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LOCALS: ‘OUR STREETS ARE STILL NOT SAFE!’ ISSUE NO 19

8/11/2010

MONDAY 8TH NOVEMBER 2010

By Stacy-Ann Burrell

A NEW SURVEY has revealed that locals in the Handsworth Wood,and Perry Barr area STILL do not feel safe. This survey, created by officials here at the Handsworth Hub, reveals some surprising facts which contradict Government statistics of recent years. The main reason for people not feeling safe is due to fear of crime such as muggings, stabbings or shootings. According to the West Midlands police statistics, crime has been reduced in the area. Supposedly, the recorded crime rate for 2008-2009 was 1754 and is now 1614 (2009-2010). If this is the case, then why are so many people still fearful of crime occurrence and feel that crime has increased? Local Student Sabrina O’Garra, 18, stated. Of course our area isn’t safe, people get mugged all the time and there’s always gangs and big groups of people everywhere. Anti-social behaviour is definitely a problem’’.

Anti-social behaviour is at an all-time high this year in Handsworth with a recorded rate of 1171- almost twice as much as last year.

The survey also revealed that many people feel unsafe walking through the area at night due to the poor street lighting. Poor street lighting is a huge, prevalent problem in the area. Some streets haveonly one lamp post for the whole street; the rest left in darkness. A huge amount of local subways, and some in neighbouring areas have little to no lighting available. Local councillor Cleopatra Manning, 40, said ‘’ we are aware that there’s a problem but there’s only so much the council can do. Every time we fix the street lights, yobs break them again. It’s costing a lot of money to sort this out [each time] and is a drain on local resources. We have realised that the best way to solve this problem is to work with the teens; letting them see damage they are doing and supporting those that want to help correct these issues’’. Some local youngsters are trying to help the local area (as below) by doing what they can to boost the image. Even the prinary school children are trying to help by organising a local ‘spring clea’. So , what are YOU doing to help ? PULLING TOGETHER:Local oouncillor and teen

LOCAL TEENS UNITE! Akintola , Student,19 who then promoted the event via her Facebook page. Sade soon realised that a lot of her friends wanted to get involved and help and she then took this further. The teens met weekly to decide how the event would be run. They then decided on a £2 car wash, with free snacks provided at the event. The teens contacted us for help and we gave them £300 to set up equipment and make food preparations for the event. We will also be at the event THUMBS UP: Taking a break from all the or- reporting and photographing how ganisation, a relaxed Sade gives us two thumbs well our teens have done. up When asked why she wanted to do this, Sade simply stated: ‘‘I’m tired LOCAL TEENS are attempting to of reading negative things about my fight off the negative stereotype we generation in the press and I wanted have of them by organising a fundto do something to change this stereraising car wash. otype by showing we can all unite’’. The initial idea was created by Sade

Local businesses have shown their support. Dutch Pot Caribbean restaurant and Abbas chip shop have offered to cook the food for the event free of charge- providing the teens buy the supply of food. In addition, many of the staff at Havelock Road Garage, where the event is being held, have said they will definitely be getting their own cars washed to show support. Handsworth Hub staff are also joining them to do this. Local residents are touched that our teenagers are trying to do something positive. The teens are hoping these residents come out to support the event. Sade stated; ‘‘I hope everyone can come and get their cars washed. £2 isn’t much to ask for and in return you get free food and a clean car and satisfaction from helping us’’.

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STAR IN OUR EYES

MONDAY 8TH NOVEMBER 2010

By Stacy-Ann Burrell

TEENAGE SENSATION Jaime Tait, 17, has taken the local area by storm with his musical talent. The teen who uses the stage name J Dot Lyrikal, first stunned locals by storming the stage at Showtime, the well known local talent show. ‘’ I’ve always been into music but I got serious about it when I saw YOUNG STAR: J Dot Lyrikal (centre) with C.A team well known grime artists making it into the main- up one third of the grime his Constructive Artist band stream...that’s what made troop Constructive Artists mates for the taent show, he me realise maybe I could which features fellow art- was clearly the stand out star do it too’’ says the sure-to- ists Cee Jay and Scripta. The when he wowed the crowd be future grime superstar. group shot to instant popular- with his Lyrikal talent. ‘’I just want my music to ity amongst grime fans when Though he is respected by his speak positively to peo- they performed at Showtime. male peers for his passion and ple’’ he continues. J makes Though J did perform with dedication to music, J is not

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short of female attention either. Look out Tinie Tempah, a new grime star has arrived on the scene. We expect big things from him!

DOGGY DOO IS PROBLEM FOR YOU By Stacy-Ann Burrell

LOCALS ARE OUTRAGED at the amount of doggy litter that has become a prevalent site in the Handsworth area. It seems owners are failing to clean up the faeces left behind by their pets. It is causing distress and anger amongst local people, especially those who are fighting to create a better image for Handsworth. A petition is in process which will be passed on to the council. It is unsure precisely how many people have signed it, but word on the street is, this will spell trouble for the coucil. The council will have to fork out money from the local budget to pay extra money to the street cleaners. Whatever the cost, the council need to do something about the problem as it is prevalent in our community and the locals will NOT be silenced. Even local Primary Schools have identified that theres not only a problem with faeces but with litter in general in our area. Handsworth had this same problem in 2005 and the council stepped up and took charge then, clearly their actions were not good enough. The question is, what will they do now?

ANNUAL HOLY TRINITY FUN DAY

Yes folks, it’s that time again for the Holy Trinity C of E Primary School fun day. Prepare yourselves for the face painting, entertainment and tasty food which have always been provided each year and this year will certainly be no different. The event will take place at Holy Trinity Church as usual and the line up of entertainment is jam packed with new local faces and veteran performers from previous fun days. Food will be provided by parents at the School who have volunteered to help and have offered to pay for the food themselves. This event is in honour of raising money for worthwhile causes. Half the funds raised will go towards the Holy Trinity C of E School fund and the other half will be donated to NSPCC .

SCHOOLS TEAM FOR SPRING CLEAN

By Stacy-Ann Burrell

LOCAL CHILDREN ages ranging from 8-11 have teamed up and organised a spring clean for the local area. The idea originated from local Head Teacher Elaine Dunford of Holy Trinity Church Of England Primary School. ‘’I wanted the kids to gain a sense of achievement from helping their community by doing something fun!’’ Elaine explains. Elaine also welcomed pupils from other local Primary Schools, such as Sacred Heart, Westminister & St Mary’s, to take part in the event. The children will be helping to keep the local area clean by litter and leaf picking and the event will take place later this spring; hence the name spring clean. There will of course be adult supervision and parents are welcome to join. Come on folks, lets support the children and Elaine who states ‘I’m hoping this event will go well and that we could possibly make it an annual thing’.


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