Kirklees councilors share their goals for 2022
It’s been a challenging past two years (well almost two years), with the rise of COVID-19 and the impact it’s had on everyone – it’s something which we’ve all had to learn to live with. Whether it may be using online video calls for the first time or adapting to the new way of learning for our younger generation in secondary schools.
The important thing is we all pulled through and are now on the cusp of the beginning of a new year, with new hopes, although still facing our challenges but hopefully with a new vision and new resolutions.
In light of this, we caught up with local councilors to share their hopes and vision for 2022. Here’s what they had to see about entering 2022 and their resolutions.
Cllr Bill Armer – Kirkburton (Conservative)
Cllr Bill Armer expressed about 7-8 years ago he made a promise to himself to not make any more New Year resolutions as they didn’t seem to ever work! “I think we all can admit it’s something we all have experienced every year we try and make new year resolutions. He expressed how it’s the only one he’s actually ever kept!” He shared
Despite not really having any actual New Year resolutions, Cllr Bill Armer is eager to carry on putting public services to the best of their abilities. He hopes to achieve that through the support he has received and promises to work with people within the community to support one and other.
With COVID having a massive impact, Cllr Bill Armer expressed, “I’ve always been the one who goes out and tries to help and knock on the doors of people. I ask them what they’re concerns are and of course COVID has impacted that entirely”.
Still hopeful to make a change, Cllr Bill Armer explains he was able to overcome the impact of COVID by using online social media applications which people used to express their complaints and concerns and is eager to continue using social media to help resolve issues.
Cllr Cathy Scott – Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for Housing and Democracy (Labour)
Cllr Cathy Scott explained as 2022 reopens our town, she’s hoping that Dewsbury town starts to flourish again and Kirklees as a whole.
Kirklees in general has been hit hard with the pandemic, with the loss of loved ones across the region. The town itself will welcome a new scheme which will help the local economy within the area and she’s hopeful this will allow a lot of people from outside of Dewsbury to visit and help boost the local economy.
She explained how her resolutions for last year – housing within Kirklees, were to be a top priority. The major crisis with supporting development was that there isn’t any affordable homes. She expressed she and the rest of the team are on board to create their own houses within Kirklees. This was something the council would take in their own accord to help build houses for those who desperately needed them.
With over 15,000 applications pouring in, Cathy said people didn’t understand that this figure wasn’t for just people but a figure for families which is more than anyone can understand.
Cathy stressed the new year is quite promising with the new plans underway creating more homes for those who are in desperate need.
Cllr Habiban Zaman – Batley East (Labour & Co-operative member)
In terms of last year, a lot of the communities needed support with lockdown taking place and a lot of local people not knowing what to do.
A big test last year was when schools were closed due to the rapid rise of COVID-19 and how students would be supported during this break. Cllr Habiban Zaman explained the priority for her and the rest of the team was to create free school meal vouchers for students.
This year, her aim is to help with dangerous driving by working with the police to reduce the number of people driving at dangerous speeds and parking illegally. She aims to continue working within the community and showing residents the council is eager to help people within the area and make a change.
Cllr Bernard McGuin – Almondbury (Conservative)
Cllr Bernard McGuin expressed his New Year resolutions was to help as many people as he could after being re-elected. It is something he takes absolute pride in achieving and believes this is the reason why people have voted him again as the councilor.
When asked if he was able to achieve his last year resolutions despite COVID, he explained, “COVID-19 made me realise the amount of people online who use social media to express their concerns but don’t necessarily use the right protocols to express their complaint.
“I’ve seen posts on local groups from people who are angry at councilors not sorting out problems but that’s because they’re not using the right facilities to express their problems.
“One thing I have tried to do which I will continue to do is when allowed, I would go visit people and help sort out their problems. This was something which a lot of people have praised me for and admired because I go out of my own way to help and I think that’s very important”
Cllr Viv Kendrick – Heckmondwike. Cabinet Member – Children, Statutory responsibility for Children (Labour)
Cllr Viv Kendrick explained, her new year resolutions have been quite the same since because, in 2016 the children services were found quite inadequate which resulted in a lot of the members asking a change of supervision. Cllr Viv expressed, “I was given the role to try and change it around and it had but after a very long time”.
With the new changes occurring and things looking much brighter, her resolution from previous years has still been active and explained, ‘It would be a treat to have OFSTED visit and do a full inspection to see the change”.
However, COVID-19 did disrupt a lot of the things occurring within schools with not only having kids at home but certain challenges they faced due to COVID-19. In particular, the mental health of many students was impacted heavily, and this is something which Cllr Viv is eager to work with the council and provide services and funding for more children to receive treatment.
She also added, when students were forced to stay at home it was quite clear that they had nothing to do. She said: “It’s important we create facilities for the youth to take part in things and this can reduce anti-social behaviour overall”.
Well there we have it, our councilors have shared their visions for 2022, do tell us what you think of them, but also let us know your resolutions for 2022.