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Bullying report viewed with some scepticism

A RECENT report based on interviews with children and young people in the borough, allegedly identified bullying, social media, school pressures and home or family life as being among the leading factors in mental health problems.

The report also said: “If mental health problems are not tackled early there is the risk of failing the next generation. Mental health support in schools can make a significant difference in a child/young person’s life.”

This report was written by Barnardo’s, a charity which is now more of a lobbying organisation than the one we can remember from many years back.

Strangely, some may say, Barnardos is also the chosen provider commissioned by Swindon CCG to introduce a new £3.2 million scheme to provide mental health professionals in Swindon schools; which might suggest the report they produced is hardly free of some bias.

After all if you are applying for £3.2 million you are hardly likely to say “everything is okay”.

I must confess that whenever I read a report I always look to see who wrote it and how it was funded. In this case I my inbuilt scepticism comes to the fore.

In the 21st century it is a matter of concern that so many young people are allegedly suffering mental health problems; but the cynic in me does ask the question whether or not the problem is exacerbated and exaggerated by an industry which appears to treat sadness and disappointment as mental health issues.

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Food recycling scheme will bring problems

While I agree recycling of plastic and paper and food tins to be good practice in order to help the environment we all live in, I think that the council introducing, for a test period in certain areas, these waste food collection tubs really is taking things a bit far.

It’s not really the fact they want to collect it, it’s the logistics of the thing that’s my concern.

The bins are going to be collected every week, they say? Well, if, for example, your collection day is Friday and on the Friday evening you start putting your food waste in how is the stench going to be by the following Thursday evening?

They say these bins can be stored in the kitchen? Well I would say that most people probably wouldn’t want a bin of rotting waste food in the kitchen, building up and building up with cooked and raw food in it.

What about each time you open the container to add food? After a few days the pong will be unbearable. With hot conditions people have windows open a lot more so these boxes will no doubt attract flies to people’s kitchens?

If people store the containers outside this will attract the bigger vermin, rats, foxes and the like?

We only have to look at the condition of the present recycling boxes we use, these when emptied mostly get chucked around by the council staff and the lids get cracked and broken so it’s a probability that within a few weeks of use the food tubs could be in a similar state.

Finally, how about once it’s been emptied, the cleaning of the tubs?

Most people wouldn’t want to be stood over an open food waste bin cleaning off the remains of week-old, rotting, smelly food.

I suppose the answer is to pay and have a waste disposal unit fitted. But of course many couldn’t necessarily afford such a luxury item.

I can see nothing but problems arising from this new idea.

Steven Blanchard, Coleview, Swindon

Working guide dogs were popular at festival

Thank you to everyone who came to visit our stall at Stratton Festival on Saturday.

Through your generosity we managed to raise an excellent £503.

Our working guide dogs that attended the event were very well behaved and met lots of people.

Thank you once again.

Alan Fletcher, Swindon Guide Dogs

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