Help city rise to challenge

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Have your say

THE Cities Outlook 2012 report is an important document which our county’s four councils will find an essential tool for mapping out the future.

For the report, by independent think-tank Centre For Cities, not only provides a vital snapshot of economic health and development in these areas, it also offers valuable advice on what is needed to prosper.

Sheffield, in particular, is exposed to further economic problems as it relies heavily on public sector employment. The report stresses that cities which have relied on public sector jobs are now ‘more vulnerable to external economic conditions’. It also says that cities such as Sheffield will find it more difficult to cut unemployment without ‘additional support’.

Sheffield has risen to the challenge of developing jobs in the public sector at the behest of central government. Surely it is the Government’s place to help cities when problems darken our horizon.

Make a noise for unsung heroes

THEY shun the spotlight and get on with their work uncomplainingly.

But the army of domestic workers who keep Sheffield’s hospitals up and running deserve their turn in the spotlight. They clean, they cook and do the laundry - services which are vital to make the city’s health service tick.

It doesn’t sound very grand, but putting meals onto trays and making a round of tea are essential tasks in the good running of a hospital. So we are delighted to salute Peggy Brownell and Lisa Raines for the valuable work they do. Take a bow ladies, you deserve it.

Fair treatment

COMMENTS coming from Sheffield Town Hall about children missing lessons have bordered on the strident, with some tough warnings that parents will be taken to task and fined.

And we have agreed with every word. Our children’s school days are too precious to be wasted by them needlessly missing time. And that is why we fail to understand the apparently softly-softly approach adopted by authorities in the case of almost 400 pupils who took no less than a month off school during a school academic year.

Why was this? What was different in these cases compared to the 500 instances where parents were taken to court over a five-year period due to children’s absence from class? The council has a duty to be even-handed in all cases and not offer special treatment when it suits them.