Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Creative publicity (LGO spin)


There was an article in the Guardian newspaper today,

http://society.guardian.co.uk/localgovt/story/0,,1775995,00.html

The article has a quote from the Ombudsman’s office stating,

"The whole idea of the remedies is that they are trying to put people back in the position they were in before something happened," a spokeswoman says. "So it is not necessarily only about money."

No mention of the fact that the councils can, and often do, ignore the ombudsman’s suggested remedy with impunity. In any event, as far as a complainant is concerned is very rarely about the money, it is about justice, the authority concerned being held accountable for the wrongs they have inflicted on a member of their community.

If Mrs Seex believes that a memorial puts the family back in the position they were before the council’s act of maladministration, God help us all.

It’s funny how the Ombudsman goes to great lengths to publicise the cases in which they find maladministration (1.6% of all cases) but fails to mention or publicise the other 98.4 % of cases.

Furthermore, what about the councils that ignore the ombudsman’s suggested remedy. Do they ever check to see that the remedy has been provided within a reasonable time, no, and neither do they care.

A neighbour and I are still waiting for a remedy the Ombudsman suggested to the council in 1998 when they found that we had suffered injustice as a result of maladministration. Even though the ombudsman is aware that the council has failed to provide the remedy they have done nothing about the ongoing injustice.

I just hope the family concerned don’t have to wait 8 years for their memorial.

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