Work together on the future

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Voluntary redundancies and unfilled vacancies make up a further 460 posts.

But that situation is a world away from the figure of 2,000 which had been suggested by the unions when it was first announced that the council must cut £219 million from its budget.

These are difficult and challenging times for all and it is simply irresponsible to believe that the public sector could or should be shielded from the effects of the recession.

This is no time for scoring political points, particularly when no concrete alternatives have been put forward by anyone else on how to reach the financial targets imposed on the council.

Indeed, we are told that if the council had given in to union pressure to preserve staff incremental pay rises, the situation would be drastically worse, with possibly a further 300 job losses.

As the council now moves to the final stage of this unhappy exercise, we would appeal to all to put aside differences and hide-bound ideologies and work together.

Your result is quite simply amazing

SIMPLY amazing!

That is the only conclusion we can draw as we see a new ward for cystic fibrosis sufferers finally take shape at the Northern General Hospital.

In less than a year, the Cystic Fibrosis Appeal, backed by The Star and its readers, has brought in £850,000 towards its £1 million target and the unit is already up and running.

People with this debilitating condition are exclusively young and it was felt inappropriate for them to spend their often lengthy periods in hospital, on general wards, where most patients tend to be elderly.

Now a purpose-built ward, offering a home from and all the comforts expected there, has been create with help from Star readers. And we mean it when we say this result is simply amazing!

No need to suffer

FOR centuries stammerers have suffered with their condition and from the reaction of those around them.

Ridiculed and bullied they have had to make the best of their lot but the Oscar-nominated film The King’s Speech has brought back memories for many of King George VI’s problem and raised the stammering issue for the first time for millions of others.

Today’s speech therapy techniques mean that children with a stammer can be helped to overcome the problem and adults are being trained to control it.

No-one needs to suffer the way the current Queen’s father did 70 years ago.