honesty


>Early today Andy May National Manager of the Regional Staff for the Yes Campaign, and  therefore my direct line manager posted on Liberal Conspiracy a detailed account of the failings within the yes campaign. 

Due to the issues on Blogger earlier today this was something I wanted to have posted earlier.


I’m glad that somebody at his level has said this. Often the regional organisers did feel we were coming up against a brick wall. There was a lot that we knew that we didn’t share the full details of with our volunteerss, because we had to give them confidence that we were going to win this. The fact that the Northern Irish team actually did so well is in spite off some of the things that are written below, once again I want to think everyone who came so close to getting Norn Iron to say Yes!

I’ve embedded the full article as Andy wrote it.

Yes to Fairer Votes – An Insiders View [published on Liberal Conspiracy http://bit.ly/lgw3Bk]http://www.scribd.com/embeds/55322336/content?start_page=1&view_mode=list&access_key=key-2by7r2voqjlmornsg716(function() { var scribd = document.createElement(“script”); scribd.type = “text/javascript”; scribd.async = true; scribd.src = “http://www.scribd.com/javascripts/embed_code/inject.js”; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(“script”)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(scribd, s); })();

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>Yeah it will come as shock to some people in Northern Ireland, but yes there are people living with HIV here in Northern Ireland.

You can’t tell who they are by looking at them.

You are not at risk from every day contact with them.

The HIV Support Centre in Belfast says that every week there are two people newly diagnosed with HIV. That is two more people who will be living with HIV in their bodies, two more sets of family and friends that will be living with someone they know very well having HIV.

Of course it is up to the individual in question as to whether s/he lets their family or friends know their status. There is still a stigma attached to HIV, which is almost as much of the ignorance from the 80s instead of what is known now about the disease. In fact it is possible to be in a full relationship with someone living with HIV and practice safer sex and to remain negative yourself*.

That stigma is something that is hard to overcome. It only will be broken down if more people living with HIV are courageous enough to let others know. Showing others that they can live a perfectly normal live.

My friend Michael is a trustee of The HIV Support Centre and he is adamant that the stigma of HIV is best lifted when people are aware that people living with HIV are all around them. Until recently this was even an issue with The HIV Support Centre itself, referring to itself merely as ‘The Centre’; the centre of what, one might ask. I recently witnessed him helping lift that stigma one person at a time.

He was talking to a friend he had known for some time, the conversation got round to HIV and his work as a trustee. Standing there listening I had an inkling where that conversation was going, especially once the friend seemed shocked that there people living with HIV in Northern Ireland, the friend was not someone you’d expect to be ignorant of such facts. Michael, eventually asked the question, “Do you know anyone living with HIV?”. The friend replied “No”. A hand was proffered with the words, “Hello, I’m Michael, I’m living with HIV.” It was a brave step even to a friend of some standing, and I’m glad to report he shook that hand and carried on asking more questions, over to the side I was fighting back the tear ducts**.

There is also the stigma of attending a GUM clinic. Some people think that everyone in there is carrying some STI if not HIV. But not every car that you see in a garage needs work doing, some are just being serviced and getting looked over ahead of an MOT, getting tested regularly is just like that. Far better to know what your status is, negative or otherwise at regular intervals that to find out too late that there is something wrong. Late diagnoses means that sometimes the medications may not be effective for the treatment of HIV.

Scarily 1 in 4 people living with HIV are as yet undiagnosed. Scarily of that set 39% are diagnosed so late that they need to start HIV treatment immediately, and 30% were diagnosed so late that there was a real risk of developing a potentially fatal illness. When there are apparently to 1 in 20 of the UK wide gay male population that are living with HIV that can lead to nightmares. Therefore the rule of thumb is treat every encounter the same, be safe and respect your own body. If someone refuses you because you want safer sex, don’t give in to peer pressure.

The message this year is ACT AWARE.

Are you aware of your HIV status?

If you’re not but are sleeping around whether with people of the same sex or the opposite, may I advise you to go and get tested now and regularly and be aware.

If you don’t believe how important that can be I’ll advise to wait until my next blog post.

* Of course there is no such thing as 100% safe sex, but if you love someone you decide for yourself what you want to do providing you are in full knowledge of the facts.

** Yeah I tend to well up quite a lot.

They want to appear to be the ‘honest’ party of British Politics, after all that does seem to be their latest mantra to throw into every sound bite.

They want to appear to be fully behind the NHS after Daniel Hannan MEP saying the the NHS was a ’60 year mistake’.

They want openness and honest about their members second jobs, even as in the case of John Lamont seeking his second mandate after they have used such two-jobbing as a tool to attack.

Yet it has emerged that Shadow Health Minister Lord Ian McColl hasn’t been open about his conflict of interests. The ignoble Lord is a paid consultant for Endeavour Health a private health care company, offering a private GP and Dental network to the best while beating NHS queue. They have also been quick to turn a profit out of fear from the potential Swine Flu pandemic.

Apparently the news that Lord McColl was a paid consultant to Endeavour Health was news to David Cameron, whose office said he was unaware of the Minister’s role with the GP network. The Shadow Health Secretary Andrew Lansley was also out of the loop saying that his colleague had never raised the issue with the health team of which he has been part of since 1997.
Cameron has so far been treading a line of non-action (no surprise there from these Tories) over the NHS. No action has been taken against Hannan. However, what stance will he take over deceit and failing to disclose an interest, not merely in one speech or question on a subject, but on the entire portfolio Lord McColl is supposed to be shadowing.

UPDATE: I see that Mr Dale has waded into the defence of Lord McColl but is broadly missing the point on a few scores.

It is not the fact that he has a second job that is the major concern but that the fact that it has direct conflict with running the Government funded NHS. A position he has been shadowing for 12 years so how a former Tory PPC can fail to know part of their health team astounds me.

Also Iain shows part of the Tory dilemma he points out that in attendance allowance the Lord would have earned £27,840, saying “unless you have private means, you have to have outside work”. I guess me and millions of other still have a lot to aspire to, and a lot more work to do to even get to a level to think about having an outside job then as well, to make ends meet.

But of course bravo to Iain for using his private health insurance to free up a spot on the NHS waiting list. At least he can afford to unlike many others, either here or in the USA, who would/are not be able to get the health care they need with a national health care provision that is free at the point of entry.

>

They want to appear to be the ‘honest’ party of British Politics, after all that does seem to be their latest mantra to throw into every sound bite.

They want to appear to be fully behind the NHS after Daniel Hannan MEP saying the the NHS was a ’60 year mistake’.

They want openness and honest about their members second jobs, even as in the case of John Lamont seeking his second mandate after they have used such two-jobbing as a tool to attack.

Yet it has emerged that Shadow Health Minister Lord Ian McColl hasn’t been open about his conflict of interests. The ignoble Lord is a paid consultant for Endeavour Health a private health care company, offering a private GP and Dental network to the best while beating NHS queue. They have also been quick to turn a profit out of fear from the potential Swine Flu pandemic.

Apparently the news that Lord McColl was a paid consultant to Endeavour Health was news to David Cameron, whose office said he was unaware of the Minister’s role with the GP network. The Shadow Health Secretary Andrew Lansley was also out of the loop saying that his colleague had never raised the issue with the health team of which he has been part of since 1997.
Cameron has so far been treading a line of non-action (no surprise there from these Tories) over the NHS. No action has been taken against Hannan. However, what stance will he take over deceit and failing to disclose an interest, not merely in one speech or question on a subject, but on the entire portfolio Lord McColl is supposed to be shadowing.

UPDATE: I see that Mr Dale has waded into the defence of Lord McColl but is broadly missing the point on a few scores.

It is not the fact that he has a second job that is the major concern but that the fact that it has direct conflict with running the Government funded NHS. A position he has been shadowing for 12 years so how a former Tory PPC can fail to know part of their health team astounds me.

Also Iain shows part of the Tory dilemma he points out that in attendance allowance the Lord would have earned £27,840, saying “unless you have private means, you have to have outside work”. I guess me and millions of other still have a lot to aspire to, and a lot more work to do to even get to a level to think about having an outside job then as well, to make ends meet.

But of course bravo to Iain for using his private health insurance to free up a spot on the NHS waiting list. At least he can afford to unlike many others, either here or in the USA, who would/are not be able to get the health care they need with a national health care provision that is free at the point of entry.