Readers’ letters - May 5

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Online only policies are unfair to the rest of us

Have you noticed how many things can now only be done online?

Considering that I have never seen it suggested that it is illegal not to own a computer, the list is too long.

The group of people which does not have online access is becoming one of the most discriminated against and disadvantaged set of folk in the land.

A recent survey has shown that 90 per cent of the best-paying savings accounts are online only.

Need to apply for or renew a ‘blue badge’ for disabled parking?

Online only.

Completing a lifestyle questionnaire can reduce a health insurance premium – but that’s online only.

Participate in a supermarket promotion with the chance of a prize?

Online only.

National savings has introduced a new bond, much vaunted in the last budget, but – you’ve guessed it – it’s online only.

The list goes on and on.

It would only take H.M Revenue and Customs to decree that all the returns had to be online and they could send all the (mainly old) people without computers to prison for failing to submit them.

Come to think of it, there could be the seeds here of a solution to the otherwise insolvable problem of social care!

Neil Inkley

Address supplied

A good deed and health and safety

I was interested to read Angela Spar’s letter (WP Letters, May 3) regarding encouraging her two children to litter pick while on their walks in the countryside, and thus help ameliorate the effects of some inconsiderate people who think it is somebody else’s paid job to pick up their thoughtlessly discarded litter.

I thought her suggestion was an amiable idea and then I thought about her children, and maybe that was also the thought of a health and safety officer.

For example, in order to prevent accidents to her children, has Ms Spar considered that they may each need a litter picker, as well as a pair of strong gloves to pick up broken glass or sharp tin cans? Then there is the question of being a visible presence to other countryside walkers, so a hi-vis vest or jacket may be needed. Then there is the matter of reaching for those poop bags up in the branches of trees. Oh dear! Above one’s head? You’ll be needing hard hats then. As these discarded items may well contain harmful materials, there is then the question of needing full face masks, with visors added to the hard hats.

Lastly all bags must conform to EU regulation: bags, litter for the use of, confirming to tear resistance, leak resistance, etc. along with EU regulations about safe conveyance and disposal thereof of said bags into an EU approved receptacle which must also meet local council regulations and, for which, a fee for collection by the local authority may be payable, with all collected items separated prior to disposal into the approved and appropriate receptacle.

What a ridiculous way to treat a well meaning family in such a way, one may be asking. Some may even be questioning this as a real life scenario, while others may take the view that it is too far-fetched an idea to be real.

Then reality will kick in and the scenario outlined may not seem so far-fetched after all. People will be questioning what sort of world we are going to pass on to future generations and all because some people think it is almost their right to drop litter. They live in an alternative society, perhaps where everything is done for them.

At least one parent is teaching her children to be good citizens. We, as parents, should all be doing this. Sadly, some parents are setting the wrong examples as they are the culprits in all of this.

Neil Swindlehurst

via email