Turning jobs away like a death wish

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HAS Sheffield Council got a death wish?

Following wealth and jobs lost over the airport debacle, then the glee that greeted Network Rail’s aborted plan to build a prestigious National Engineering Centre, losing us 160 engineering jobs and apprenticeships – they now turn Next, Sytners and IKEA away from Meadowhall.

Our huge retail success story, bringing jobs for our people and rates for the council coppers is held back to appease Hammersons.

At the same time Sheffield grandly declares itself to be a City of Sanctuary.

Recently, The Star hailed a new school planned at Firvale and quoted a Mr Hussein saying it was needed, because the latest wave of immigrants, from Slovakia, couldn’t get their children into schools they wanted.

A friend who works for the council confirms that being a City of Sanctuary is not meaningless, as were previous grand gestures – remember the Socialist Republic, anti-military bands and nuclear-free zone. Slovakians are just the latest wave – half a million Romanians and Bulgarians could head to the UK at the end of 2013.

These people, apart from the odd criminal or two, are not seeking sanctuary from a police state, they simply seek a better life.

Ports such as Dover and many London boroughs found their services, NHS and schools overwhelmed, so appreciate our gesture.

It means that Slovakians, at Dover, can be given rail tickets to Peterborough or Sheffield, to ease the pressure on the south.

But, how on earth can the council justify this, while turning away so much employment, especially when their own staff are due to lose their jobs?

Don Alexander, Knab Road, S7