I was quite suprised (to put it mildly) to find Clive Betts there.
Turns out he was out campaigning on behalf of the labour party in the local elections (1st of May is voting day).
He asked my if I had any local issues he could help with or any questions.
Knowing J would kill me if I didn't, I moaned about the local bus service, how it was stupid that there were only two buses an hour at peak time, and no way to get to the local shopping center without using a car. He sympathised and talked about the up coming act going through parliment that would allow local councils to force bus companies to travel certain routes.
He then asked my if I would be voting Labour?
I laughed and told him that I would not, and when he asked why I told him.
I don't think he was expecting somebody living in an ex-council house, who'd written to him in 2000 before the RIP Act was passed, expressing concerns about the act and the way it would be used. I then raised my concerns that it was now being used by local councils to spy on parents claiming school places.
He then asked if I thought that parents should be allowed to claim school places they weren't entitled to?
I said of course not. But I didn't think that an act of parliment that was written to give the security services powers to spy on suspected terrorists should be used by local councils to spy on ordinary people for non-criminal acts.
He made his excuses and left.
I think I'll write to him again, and ask him if he thinks it's valid that councils are using the RIP Act to spy on people who aren't suspected of any crime, and if he'd be happy for it to happen if a party like the BNP were in power.
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