Government is failing on benefits and booze

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AS a pensioner, what really surprised me about last week’s Budget were not only the unfair “granny taxes” but two glaring omissions.

Firstly, more than five million of the UK population of working age live on benefits.

No economy can afford this.

And so it is absolutely appalling there seems no effective strategy or absolute priority to get people off benefits and into worthwhile work.

National service, whether it is in a military setting or is civil and community-based, would be better than depriving people of the opportunity to contribute to society.

Secondly, we do not pay our taxes to fund the huge costs of alcohol abuse or for the National Health Service and our police forces to deal with abusive drunken behaviour.

The imposition of a minimum 40p per unit of alcohol is unlikely to solve this problem.

People indulging in such behaviour apparently have funds to pay for large amounts of alcohol.

In that case, then, why should they not repay the costs of their behaviour in full to the taxpayer?

Name and address supplied

Get dementia on public’s radar

There are 800,000 people living with dementia in the UK.

And yet a new report by the Alzheimer’s Society shows three-quarters of us don’t feel the country is geared up to deal with dementia.

The Dementia 2012 report has found almost half a million people with the condition are battling depression, loneliness or anxiety.

Not only do they face a struggle for a diagnosis and support from the health and social care system, but everyday things we all take for granted – such as getting to the shops, spending time with friends and family, getting money from the bank, going on holiday or just taking a walk – are made difficult by the lack of understanding in our communities.

We must face up to the fact that people with dementia and their carers are being failed.

In the 1950s, attitudes to cancer changed.

And in the 1980s, society also changed its attitude to Aids.

Now is the time to begin a movement which leads to the same for dementia.

From Plymouth to Preston and from the boardroom to bus drivers, we all need to respond to the dementia challenge.

Roseleen Smalley, via email

It’s a uniform reaction

I am appalled at Stella McCartney’s design for the new British Olympic athlete’s uniform, and appalled at the people who chose it.

Where is the red Cross of St George and the Cross of St David?

This is yet another assault on our Britishness and the traditions that our forefathers fought for.

There are people in this country who have no sense of respect for their own homeland.

This can be laid firmly at the door of multiculturism engendered by our membership of the EU, and immoral liberal policies.

You do not need a degree in sociology to observe the destruction.

However the worst crime is apathy. We all need to speak out.

Jack Lewis, via email