16/01/2018 London News


16/01/2018

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on the problems of recruiting and

retaining nurses in the NHS.

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Now

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Welcome to BBC London News.

I'm Chris Rogers.

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There could be dire

consequences for the capital

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following the collapse

of construction giant Carillion -

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one union is warning the full

impact is not yet known.

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BBC London has learnt that

a multi-million pound development

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at one of our busiest hospitals

has been hit as a result.

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And we've also discovered

that the Met police has

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contracts with the company.

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Here's our political

correspondent, Karl Mercer.

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St Helier is in need of repair.

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These parts of the Sutton hospital

are well past their sell by date.

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Which is why bosses here decided

they needed to shell out £12

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million on repairs.

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It's the biggest refurb

the hospital has ever had,

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and will see windows

and roofs replaced.

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The outer walls

strengthened and repaired.

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Only yesterday the work hit a snag.

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Its name?

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Carillion - a major

sub-contractor on this

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project, and one not living up

to its billboard promises.

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Yesterday work here stopped.

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Some workers were on site today.

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But their future too is uncertain

past the end of the week.

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The hospital chief executive was not

available per interview today, but

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he did tell me last night worker

stopped yesterday. He is in urgent

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talks with contractors to see what

happens. He is either a statement in

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which he said he was grateful to

stop still working on site despite

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the uncertainty. He said, we are

working hard to find a solution to

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enable the work to continue as

planned.

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The improvement works are very badly

needed.

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The St Helier redevopment,

like most, is done with the help

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of private contractors,

under the sort of scheme brought

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in by the Prime Minister, who first

introduced the private finance

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initiative to Britain,

and was born in this hospital.

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Local MPs today hope his scheme

will still go ahead

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on time and on budget.

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You've got the hospital at maximum

capacity because of the winter.

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Every bed used. At the same time as

you are trying to replace Windows,

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make sure there is a new roof and to

actually make sure there is no water

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getting in. It is not

straightforward. But I do have

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confidence that it will continue and

we desperately needed.

The chief

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executive is making sure something

and get sorted out. It is a worry

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that we don't want any further

delay. We want to make sure we have

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costs right as well. We have only

got a limited budget. It is

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important that we are on the case

straightaway.

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It's not just the public sector

affected by Carillion's collapse.

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This housing development

in Central London left quiet today.

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Workers simply coming back

to pick up their tools.

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And unions warning the full effects

are yet to be felt in the capital.

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It's not just Carillion. It is many

thousands of construction workers,

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small companies, medium-sized

companies, who are literally

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wondering what will happen at the

end of today, tomorrow, the end of

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this week.

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The coming days will

be difficult for many

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connected with Carillion.

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Workers - and those

who depended on its services.

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And it's emerged the

Metropolitan Police is also

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affected, with Carillion involved in

four South London police stations.

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They prepare exhibits

for court cases, provide some

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of the custody services,

processing people through

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the system, and do maintenance

and electrical work.

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They also have an even bigger

contract, which is operating

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and managing the Metropolitan

Police's specialist training

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centre in Gravesend,

where they train officers

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in public order,

how to deal with rioting,

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with seige situations - and they

have a shooting range there.

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The Met Police and Mopac -

the Mayor's Office for Policing

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and Crime - say they have

contingency plans which suggests

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the staff will stay there

for the immediate future.

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I wouldn't want people to think that

if there were to be any difficulty,

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that would cause the Met to come to

a halt. It absolutely wouldn't.

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These are important contracts for

us. The people who work in Carillion

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are concerned about their futures,

we understand that. At the moment we

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have no break in service and it is

the intention of the mayor and me to

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make sure that continues into the

future.

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A decision on a controversial

regeneration plan for south london

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is expected tonight.

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Councillors are still meeting

to consider plans to demolish

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the shopping centre

and neighbouring buildings.

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Nearly 1000 new homes are planned,

but protestors who stormed

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the council offices say

not enough of them affordable.

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Ayshea Buksh has been

at the meeting tonight.

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Any progress?

Chris, the future of

the elephant and Castle shopping

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centre has been on the table through

many years. This is the third scheme

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that the council has considered in

the last 20 years. The current plans

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are to demolish the centre and the

surrounding areas, and to replace it

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with new homes, shops and leisure

facilities. Before the meeting

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started there was a protest which

started at the elephant and Castle

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roundabout. They marched through the

London Bridge area onto the offices

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here. The meeting was ticketed. Some

of the protestors, frustrated at not

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being able to get in, stormed the

building. Earlier I spoke to some of

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the demonstrators on the march and

asked why they are so against this

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scheme.

We can't afford luxury flats. It is

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pushing poor people out of their

local area, their communities.

It

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will be destroyed. The traders,

people.

Around 100 businesses run by

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Latin American traders with their

families are being affected.

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As I left the meeting, councillors

were quizzing the developers over

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various issues. There are plans for

nearly a thousand new homes. All

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will be privately rented. Some of

the objections that were voiced by

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different people at the meeting were

over the lack of affordable homes

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and light blocking existing

residencies. The Latin American

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community have many shops and

restaurants within the centre. The

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council say this is a long-held

ambition and aspiration to redevelop

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the centre. They want to make it a

good place to live for a new and

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existing residents.

Thank you.

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Jewish and Muslim families

in North London say their elderly

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relatives are moving away,

because they're worried

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about what will happen

if they die living in the area.

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They say the local coroner

won't honour their traditions

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of burying people immediately.

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Victoria Cook has more.

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Helen Langberg lost two

relatives in the same year.

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It's Jewish custom to bury

the deceased immediately.

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But they were left waiting for days

for the coroner to release the body.

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Every day, every minute, every hour

was more anxious. We were fretting

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and worrying. We didn't know when it

was going to be.

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And they aren't the only family

in North London affected.

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Many elderly people want to move

away from the area because they are

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frightened of dying, their loved

ones, their children shouldn't

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suffer, that they can't be buried at

the right time. It is important for

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us.

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Jewish and Muslim families

say their religious beliefs aren't

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being considered by the coroner.

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I've had many families

from Jewish and Muslim

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families in tears, not able

to bury their loved ones.

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For nonreligious people, they may

say that everybody should be treated

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fairly in order. What do you say to

that?

This is not about jumping the

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queue. I would not advocate that.

Everybody should be treated on an

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equal basis. Equality means also

understanding people's religions.

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Britain is a diverse country. There

are no specific laws about burial

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timings but the Ministry of Justice

hats to set guidelines. They say a

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coroner should, where possible, take

into consideration religious beliefs

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and traditions.

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A solicitor representing

people from the Jewish

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community says the coroner

is in breach of human rights laws.

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He's now applying

for a judicial review.

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Most people in Britain really don't

care, they are not in a rush. Burial

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takes place a week or more after

death. Some faiths, Muslims and

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Jewish people, need to bury

immediately. It is part of their

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faith. Therefore, being able to do

so wouldn't in any way harmed those

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who simply are not in a rush.

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The coroner for Inner North

London wouldn't comment.

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But in a letter to the community

she says...

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There are now calls

for the coroner to step down or be

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moved away.

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The introduction of what is believe

to be the Uk's first ever buffer

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zone to stop protestors

from gathering outside

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an abortion clinic, has come

a step closer tonight.

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Campaigners have welcomed a vote

by ealing council to begin a public

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consultation into the plans to stop

anti-abortion demonstrations

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outside a Marie Stopes

clinic in the borough.

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That's it for now from me.

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But let's find out

what the weather's up

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to with Stav Danaos.

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It has been very cold today. Plenty

of sunshine. We had some wintry

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showers in southern areas,

particularly across the Downs. For

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most it would be a dry, clear and

chilly night. Watch out for some icy

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patches. It would be a cold night.

Tomorrow, a fine day again for our

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region. It will be sunny, cold and

windy. It will be windy through the

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morning. The odd passing shower

could be possible. Lots of sunshine

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into the afternoon. Wrap up if you

are heading out. Then we see a spell

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of wet and windy weather spreading

across the region over a Wednesday

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night. Very briefly milder with this

spell of gales and rain. It will

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turn cold on Thursday morning. A

windy start to Thursday. A few

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showers around. Plenty of sunny

spells. Temperatures between eight

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and 9 degrees. Things calm down

towards the end of the week.

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