Residents Association Resignation

Monday, January 31st, 2011

I wish to provide clarity with regard to my recent resignation from the Kingsway Residents Association Committee, after I joined with the clear intensions of finding collective ways forward in stamping-out Anti Social Behaviour in our community – as those who have, and continued to endure serious Anti Social Behaviour…

I have waited until now as I have made every effort to persuade those responsible to investigate the circumstances which resulted in my resignation in protest toward the manner in-which Emily Jones was allowed to make socially dividing & discriminative comments during the last Residents Meeting in Nov’ 2010; comments which were supported by Barry Kirby (Chair) Kingsway Residents Association, and went unchallenged by Cllr: Wood (who was equally present at the meeting). Emily Jones considered residents used “snobbery” when reporting Anti Social Behaviour, and have no idea about the place – nor the Citizen Newspaper!

I registered a complaint with Emily Jones’ Senior Officers within Gloucester City Homes, and the Anti-Social Behaviour Team who are responsible for Project Solace (including Gloucester Police Chief Constable, Mr Tony Melville). Emily Jones was interviewed, and firmly denied ever making the comments. Evidence was later provided – and confirmed by others who recall such comments being made at the meeting (other committee members). Regardless, and thereafter acknowledging such comment was made, Emily Jones (who made the comments in public) refused to apologise in public, or stand down from her highly responsible position of trust in the community after denying she made the comments, and only acknowledged them after considerable effort was made to confirm the comments were fact!

Victoria King-Low (Senior Officer) made no further decision beyond her original interview of Emily Jones. Barry Kirby (Chair) Kingsway Residents Association, acknowledged himself that Emily Jones made the comment – and supported her words. However, he accepted that her comments be removed from the formal minutes of the meeting and rearranged via “discrete wording” in order to prevent them from being seen by the wider community. I made clear my own view of concerns which might be caused if read by the wider community. Mr Kirby stated: "However, I think the point about not necessarily including it in the minutes is fair, in terms of repeating it verbatim, but I think this can be easily achieved by some discrete wording. Her words, whilst right for the context of the meeting, would not come across the same when read cold"!

I was alarmed and totally disgusted by the alteration of the formal minutes of the Kingsway Residents Association, just to protect someone making such disgraceful socially dividing discrimination towards those in the community who suffer, and report Anti-Social Behaviour. I made clear that I wanted no part as a committee member in being involved in this improper behaviour when we are expected to be in place as representatives for – and as part of – this community. I resigned for these reasons, and currently await confirmation from those responsible in providing their final statements, in order for my request for the Local Government Ombudsman to investigate the actions of those who should act responsibly, and not make public statements of this kind or be protected when making such disgraceful statements by their senior officers.

I hope others in this community will consider my actions understandable when having factual awareness of such matters, and equally know that they were receiving selective alteration by others within the committee in order to protect individuals making such comments, instead of protecting those who suffer or need to report suffering Anti Social Behaviour with those who make remarks of this kind and are equally provided a platform by the Kingsway Residents Association, in order to voice them!


13 Responses to “Residents Association Resignation”

    Morning Clive,

    I was hoping to be in a position where I could provide an update at the meeting last night with regard to the findings of the investigation. Sadly, the hearing which took place on Monday afternoon wasn’t provided with all the documented details connected with the matter – this has resulted in their failure too comply within the remit of 12 weeks, and now the Local Government Ombudsman has been passed all details instead. Therefore, I have been advised not to discuss this any further until the LGO has concluded their findings. I will make these available as soon as I have them.

    Hi Steve,

    No problem.
    Thanks for your reply 😀

    Afternoon Clive,

    Thank you for clarifying matters.

    I was simply confirming alterations, and not suggesting any form of underhanded behaviour on your part. I have retained the original and will have this available if so required via those called upon for further investigation.

    I am aware of your Terms & Conditions with regard to how comments are released by yourself, and wouldn’t wish to create displeasure toward your very hard work with regard to the website.

    Hi Steve,

    Clive, after reading the inclusion herein – which begins this thread, and then reading my own printed comments in readiness of release for inclusion, both differ slightly. I have noticed that some of my own words used have been replaced, or equally other words added beyond my own original comment for release.

    All edits made were merely corrections to spelling and grammar/readability and were not intended to change the meaning of anything you said.
    If you believe any of the changes altered the meaning, please feel free to re-quote from your original post (I’m sure you have kept a copy) so that I/we can review them.

    The reason I make this known is in order for the wider community to note that some alterations have been made without my being made aware that this was being done before finally added for release, and when anyone wishes to respond thereafter.

    Thank You

    My Terms & Conditions clearly state:

    The administrators of this website reserve the right to approve and edit all user comments and posts.

    …but I always try to ensure that such edits are restricted to correcting of spelling and grammatical errors (and sometimes to improving the suggested post title).

    Cucco,

    I read your words with positivity and a welcomed smile of hope.

    Thank you for adding your comments on how we should recognise each other, and the positions we hold for – and on behalf of – the wider community, and not for our own personal benefit. There is no relevance at all in what your social position is in life – just how you act toward others in your community.

    I have worked alongside The Police, Council & Central Government for some considerable time towards addressing ASB, and or other crimes prior to, or whilst within this community; providing considerable detail which assisted addressing numerous incidents in a more positive fashion, and receiving numerous high-ranking supportive statements of grateful thanks, and their desire for my continued involvement in the future. I was hopeful toward continuing this with the (KRAC) but from the outset this was not a positive route for me to continue alongside such actions as those publicly made as it showed behaviour I preferred not to be associated with when collectively attempting to address ASB. I will continue tackling ASB, and hope to provide helpful results like those previously achieved.

    I am sure many would agree, it’s hard enough as it is when being confronted by ASB, either once or as in our case continually. That’s why we wish to stand firm when such comments are made – regardless of the preferred smothering of this matter by others in order to limit it’s possible outcome.

    Its a shame that blast2u felt so strongly about the comments and the possible rewording that he resigned from the residents committee and I am sure the energy and time since may well have been put to better use in helping those (including himself) in trying to eradicate ASB. However, I cannot blame him for resigning as he felt strongly about a point/issues.

    I have no input into these meetings but applaud the hard work of those who do on behalf of the community (including blast2u until his resignation).

    Is it relevant whether or not that someone who is accused of ASB is living in a housing association property or not, other than maybe they are breaching their tenancy agreement?

    The whole discussion is getting too personal and the point of those who have suffered with ASB seems to have been sidelined.

    The individuals who put themselves forward for the Kingsway Residents Association Committee (KRAC) and therefore are now on the committee along with any other speakers need to be aware of how certain comments can be interpreted and possibly misinterpreted and to be held accountable for any comments that may have or may cause offence in the future either through an apology or being asked to step down. The aim and outcome of KRAC is about the community not about anyone individual etc.

    Peace to all through honest communication.

    🙂

    Indeed I did write that, because I was referring to the individual word used which on it’s own could mean anything to anyone when written down. However, it is the context along with the other words she used that you and only you (as far as I’m aware) have misinterpreted. As the minutes of the meeting are a summary and not word for word, putting ‘snobbery’ (and capturing one word of a 20 minute presentation) within in them would not reflect what was said / meant.

    tonybowden and others of the current Kingsway Residents association Committee, your comments hereing are duly noted. Tony Bowden, I would like to refer to a comment made by yourself to me in an email soon after reporting this matter, and perhaps others can view an opinion for themselves with regard to your indication that I may have “taken it the wrong way I’m afraid”…

    “Ultimately though, I do agree that such a comment could fuel a fire and any divide in the community. It certainly wouldn’t be helpful if it were included within the minutes”…

    I’m sorry you’ve been the subject of ASB, I really am. It can’t be easy if you’ve been in that position. In fact my family have been in a similar situation, not in Kingsway, but where I used to live. It wasn’t nice, and so I know what you’re going through.
    Having said that, I was in the meeting that you’re referring to, and you really have taken it the wrong way I’m afraid.

    I don’t believe Emily was making light of the situation and was certainly not ridiculing those that have been affected by it.

    I am rather concerned that you feel this way and have gone to such lengths to make it difficult for her as well as other members of this community.

    Emily and her team are doing something positive for our village and I’d urge you to reconsider your position and recent actions. I suggest you perhaps work with her and the rest of the community to help stamp out ASB that you and others in our village have been affected by.

    In considering the above paragraph, consider what you’re hoping to achieve by taking your current action. Whatever your hopes, and whatever may come of your actions, you’re certainly not helping to stamp out the ASB that you have experienced in our village. I’d agree with Jacob that your efforts, which appear to have been considerable, would have been far better suited to stamp ASB out by doing something far more constructive and positive.

    Once again, I’m sorry you feel the way you do, and hope you can resolve the matter in a positive way.

    Clive, after reading the inclusion herein – which begins this thread, and then reading my own printed comments in readiness of release for inclusion, both differ slightly. I have noticed that some of my own words used have been replaced, or equally other words added beyond my own original comment for release.

    The reason I make this known is in order for the wider community to note that some alterations have been made without my being made aware that this was being done before finally added for release, and when anyone wishes to respond thereafter.

    Thank You

    Your respective comments are duly noted. Clive, when I spoke with you regarding this matter soon after the event, your response was very different from now! Emails have been retained, and will be used for further investigation. Barry has suggested I have entered into a committee meeting in order to disguss this at length… the only meeting I attended was that during which the comments were made. The intended meeting soon thereafter was never attended by me as I resigned just before it took place. I did however enter into brief selective email communications with some committee members.

    Surely, any minutes of that meeting would have been noted as comments were actually being made at the time (shorthand or otherwise) and recognised by others in the manner described – writing them up thereafter for release was, as Barry made clearly known would be carried-out with “discrete wording” instead of the comments themselves.

    If I am wrong or have reported my serious concerns without justification from those comments made in public toward those in this community when reporting ASB, then the investigation will clearly make it’s findings known and a copy will be provided for clarity.

    With regard to the final paragraph of Jacob’s comment:
    We have made every effort in attempting to have the serious ASB we suffer – almost daily – addressed. The distress, strain & damage it causes has taken it’s toll on ourselves. Regardless, we will not allow ourselves to be constant victims, and I only hope others don’t have to endure the same as we have – and continue to; it’s for those reasons that we took offence toward such a comment regarding such a serious concern as ASB.

    I have to totally disagree with both your comments / thought process in relation to this matter.

    You have clearly taken her comments out of context. As far as I am aware, no-one has supported or agreed with the way you interpreted the comments made by Emily. Surely this fact alone would make you question your own interpretation?

    As Clive rightly points out, if the minutes were not written at that point, then how could they be removed? Furthermore, the minutes would be a summary and wouldn’t have contained any specific comments anyway.

    I only wish the amount of effort you’ve put into your ‘campaign’ against her was put to something far more positive and constructive for the community.

    Hi Steve,

    You say:

    “I was alarmed and totally disgusted by the alteration of the formal minutes of the Kingsway Residents Association”…

    …but the minutes weren’t created until some time after you made your views known; so they were never altered! (In addition, it is common practice for minutes to contain a summary of presentations).

    To be honest, I believe you may have taken her comment slightly out of context, as you said:

    Emily Jones considered residents used “snobbery” when reporting Anti Social Behaviour

    …whereas my recollection is that she reported that many residents made vague (and perhaps snobbish) comments regarding social housing tenants being the root cause of ASB problems in general, during the Have Your Say Day survey; (an attitude which has been evident from comments made on this website, so didn’t come as a great suprise to me, and an allegation that has been firmly refuted by statistics)!

    Personally I am sorry that this has caused your resignation at such an early stage as I believe you have much to offer the local community.

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