Sunday, September 28, 2008

Asbestos in Schools: Foolish Rowen Backs Up Cyril



Paul Rowen has switched by way of screeeching U-Turn from a "benefit of hindsight", from "not excusing the inexcusable", from praising the 1982 Yorkshire TV Alice documentary kinda fella, albeit highly confused about the safety and desirability of redeveloping the TBA Killing Fields of the Spodden Valley, to a bit of an excuser.


Meanwhile there is this fairly useless piece of mortality statistic propaganda. It's not where people die you statistically illiterate invertebrates of Rochdale Observer, it's where they lived and how much Turner product they inhaled! It's not like dying at the Manchester Royal, The Christie, North Manchester, Bury or Oldham General shouldn't be chalked up as a Cyril Smith/TBA death now is it? Leigh Carlisle (27) did not die within the PCT behind these figures. And mesothelioma itself is in any case only expected to be responsible for about half of the still-to-come 180,000 worldwide asbestos-caused deaths. Be fair.


And the local Saturday Postbag in the Rochdale Observer continues to fall evenly for and against Saint Cyril. Whereas the midweek version runs six or seven to one against the disgusting creep. But that sells far less copies.

What are the Rochdale Observer up to? Why are they running with the Lib Dem pack? Surely the Cllr Elwyn Watkins brother-in-law influence does not extend to whitewashing Cyril (and Hennigan and Rowen) from all evil?

The Leigh Carlisle story they distort was told four weeks ago by The New Statesman of course here, on the web. And that other Observer in London are certainly not buying into the conspiracy to talk down the problem:

* Andrew Russell and Caroline Davies The Observer, Aug 30, 2008

Did asbestos at school kill this woman?

Teachers' leaders warn of a 'ticking time-bomb' after primary classroom link to premature death

For two years Leigh Carlisle courageously battled the killer disease mesothelioma, which is almost always caused by asbestos, and searched for the reason why she might have contracted it at the age of 26. She was believed to be the UK's youngest recorded victim of a disease normally associated with older people. To have developed it at such a young age, she must have been exposed as a child. But how and where?

Leigh, from Failsworth, Oldham, never got her answer. She died on Wednesday, aged 28, at a hospital in north Manchester, with her boyfriend by her side.

Not long before her death, her lawyers began to investigate the possibility that she could have contracted the disease at her primary school. As her family and boyfriend paid tribute to her fight, solicitor Geraldine Coombes of Irwin Mitchell, a firm specialising in industrial diseases, said they were awaiting a response to a Freedom of Information request about the buildings in which Leigh was taught as a youngster.

'We had been working with Leigh and her family to establish how she was exposed to asbestos. We know that she must have been exposed to it as a child,' said Coombes, adding: 'We know that asbestos in schools in a real problem.'

Leigh's boyfriend, Michael Price, said: 'Leigh had so much courage and strength - she was an inspiration to me and to others.' Instead of flowers at her funeral, he said she wanted donations to the Oldham Cancer Support centre in Failsworth. 'Leigh would have liked to think that she helped the cancer centre to support other people.'

Her parents, Sheila and Mark, sister Sarah and niece Bella said in a statement: 'Leigh is still very much part of our family, always a treasured daughter, sister and auntie. Everyone is so proud of her.'

Leigh, who completed an MA degree in marketing last year, was eventually diagnosed after suffering abdominal pains. The disease, which attacks a thin membrane coating the lungs and abdomen, is one of the most aggressive forms of cancer, but usually takes more than 20 years to develop.

Leigh once speculated that she could have been exposed to it while taking a regular shortcut to her primary school through a builder's yard.

Although the precise cause of her illness is not yet known, her story has highlighted the cases of around 200 school workers who have died or are suffering serious illness as a result of asbestos being used in schools. The National Union of Teachers has described the issue as a 'ticking time bomb'. Research and campaigning work by Michael Lees, whose teacher wife died from mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos in the school where she worked, had made the public aware of the extent of the problem, said Coombes. 'We hope the government will act to protect teachers and schoolchildren,' she added.

It is estimated that today around 13,000 schools contain asbestos. It was widely used in school building projects during the second half of the 20th century.

It is claimed in an investigation in the New Statesman this week that even though the Department of Education and Science became concerned about its use as early as 1967, pressure from the asbestos industry meant that it continued to be used.

Around 2,000 people die from mesothelioma in Britain each year, a figure which has doubled since 1992 and looks set to rise further. Professor Julian Peto of Cancer Research UK has called the use of asbestos in Britain an 'extraordinary industrial error'. He believes that 90,000 more people will die from mesothelioma in Britain and that a further 90,000 will die from other lung diseases related to asbestos exposure.

'Leigh will be greatly missed by everyone who knew her,' said her solicitor. 'She was always friendly and kind to others, no matter how bad things were with her health. She was an exceptional young woman, spending time raising money for charity and raising awareness among younger people about cancer.'

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Rowen is foolish if the quotes in the Rochdale Observer did come from him. If Hennigan made them that is more understandable as they defend Saint Spanker and make the current MP look stupid.

Cyril's hand can be seen in the odd letter from the cap doffing mill girl in the letter's page. Thanking Cyril for their job. A touch too obvious but then again Cyril doesn't do subtle.

The Rochdale Fib Dem propaganda outfit has that tinge of germanic efficiency about it. Say a lie loud enough and often enough and it should stick in the minds of folk. Now who else said something similar?

Sir Cyril, 'our kid' Norman Smith MBE, Cllr Jean Jeanie, nee Bevan and now Paul Rowen MP - the White Knights of asbestos. All very illiberal.

The bunker at Fib Dem HQ has the feel of April 1945 about it.

Denial and downfall.

Chris Paul said...

Almost time for someone to Youtube a Downfall spoof up I suppose? Yawn.

Anonymous said...

Rochdale MP Paul Rowen has accused the local Labour Party of "dumping Gordon Brown"!

Rochdale and District Labour Party had a photo of Gordon Brown on their website that has recently been replaced with a photo of David Miliband!

Paul Rowen said: "Everybody knows that Labour is disillusioned with Gordon Brown but this is an amazing snub. This lack of loyalty says everything about the local Labour Party. Only last year, Simon Danczuk was happily posing with Gordon Brown at a pre-arranged photo shoot claiming he was discussing all sorts about Rochdale. It's now clear that because he is not the flavour of the month, he has abandoned Gordon Brown. I await the pre-arranged, synthetic snap of Simon Danczuk shaking hands with David Miliband! This smacks of opportunism, there is absolutely no need to use a picture of an MP from South Shields - unless they know something we don't!"

The Labour Party refutes the claim saying the website has been "hacked"!

Paul Rowen's agent, David Hennigan posted on the Rochdale Online message board: "We received a call from the Daily Express today regarding a press release I'd written. Basically the Labour Party in Rochdale had replaced a picture of Gordon Brown with David Miliband. Whoever they contacted claimed that I had 'hacked' into the site and replaced the picture. Now anyone who knows me will know that I can't do that."

Public servant said...

This is a serious issue that has been misrepresented in the Rochdale Observer.

The reassurances given in the article are baseless. They appear to be words of comfort, probably made for good reasons, but they are unsubstantiated.

Phrases such as being "absolutely certain that none of young people is in any danger" is unscientific and cannot be defended without much more information -including a substantial data set of reliable air monitoring records and analysis.

The sad case of Leigh Carlisle is not represented accurately in the Rochdale Observer article. Though why the local newspaper has reported it in such a biased manner with no mention of her widely reported potential childhood school exposure is a matter for the Editor's perogative and conscience.

The quotes from the local authority officer are also selective. Knowing how public bodies operate, this was probably because of Rochdale Council's Press office or the way the newspaper decided to report it. Either way it adds little to a responsible debate about an important matter.

Asbestos in public buildings, especialy schools, and the potential for respirable fibre release should never be dismissed or 'swept under the carpet' with glib comments and bland but comforting assurances.

Just why this article has been presented to Rochdale Observer readers in this manner remains a mystery.

Balanced, fair reporting using responsible facts and substantiated authoratitive comment is required.

Anonymous said...

200 school workers dead from mesotheliomia yet Paul Rowen is confident that Rochdale school pupils and teachers are absolutely not at risk?

What is going on with Master Rowen? Big Cyril must really have something over him.

Obviously "leading experts" such as Dick Badmani have clearly shown that as soon as asbestos crosses the border into Lancashire then the cancer causing fibres turn into harmless goose down.

Is it the sort of goose that lays golden eggs?

Anonymous said...

Cyril got something over Paul Rowen.
You bet.
Years of it going back to when Young Paul was a fawning young Liberal.
When Paul was a thrusting young councillor, Cyril was meddling in the background knifing good people in the back and general muck raking.

Nasty devious politiking that has helped make Rochdale a backbiting, lame shithole and home to epic dodgy deals.

Cyril the kingmaker and chief financier. A so-called man of the people who abused his townsfolk. The hidden hand of shifty capitialism wrapped up in a big orange flag.

Mr Rochdale:
he abused it, robbed it, poisoned it, made it a laughing stock yet demanded absolute loyalty in a perverted personality cult.

The damage is still being done, all to protect this fat fool.

Chris Paul said...

Is it possible that individuals at the R Observer have been threatened? Are there dodgy dossiers there too? It must be said that several of the staff in South Manchester may be susceptible to pressure ...

Anonymous said...

The Rochdale Observer used to be an Old Boy's Club. Freemason's and Rotarians rife. That's how things were back then. It was just a touch more cosy than in other places.

A lot of the old guard have now gone. Lots of young impressionable and over worked staffers now there no doubt. Editors of local rags nowadays just follow the line of least resistance. Combine that with the Guardian Media big wigs still having warm feelings of regard for Cyril plus the fact he and his minions are never off the 'phone to them.

That is the recipe for piss poor local journalism and cover up.

It will change.

They are not that stupid. Surely?

Anonymous said...

1. Rochdale DLP open website hacked into and a put of Milliband posted? At as time when Rochdale Lib Dems were in trouble wit claims about Cyril Smith? Fist posted on as Lib Dem blog but soonafter Dave Hennigan boasting about his victory of getting the story in the Daily Express?

2. Adam Power claiming that he had spoken to Tony Lloyd MP's and had information to kill an embarressing article about Cyril Smith? Adam Getting caught out telling lies about it and now a denial that he even works for paul Rowen MP's Lib Dem Rochdale office?

3. Dave Hennigan getting very shirty publicly after getting found out recyling very old stories about a Cyril Smith portrait being donated to the National Liberal Club by the Ogden Trust? This happened in March 08, reported again by the Ogden Trust in Aug 08 for Cyril's 80th pie and DeLorean bash, and now hitting the headlines again in the week that a Parliamentary EDM has been tabled calling for Cyril to be stripped of his knighthood.

These pathetic attempts at spinning follow a clear pattern.

All paid for by taxpayer's money too?

Time for an audit and investigation of Rochdale Liberal Democrat Accounting Unit?