Agenda item - Petitions for Council Debate

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Agenda item

Petitions for Council Debate

Petitions to be debated at Council.  Reports of the Monitoring Officer:

 

(1)      No Confidence in Brighton & Hove Council. Lead petitioner Katie Brotherton.

(2)      Close Brighton and Hove Greyhound Stadium. Lead petitioner Sarah Whitehead.

(3)      Reduce the Costs of Secondary Uniforms in Brighton & Hove. Lead petitioner Emma Daniel.

Minutes:

66.1      The Mayor stated that where a petition secured 1,250 or more signatures it could be debated at the council meeting.  He had been made aware of three such petitions and would take each in turn. However, he also noted that first petition, concerning no confidence in Brighton & Hove Council had been withdrawn due to the petitioner being unable to take part in the meeting at the present time.

 

66.2      The Mayor then invited Sarah Whitehead to present the petition concerning the need for the Hove Greyhound Stadium to be closed.

 

66.3      Sarah Whitehead thanked the Mayor and stated that the petition which had been signed by nearly 7,000 people was aimed at stopping the exploitation of greyhounds and puppies that don’t make the grade. She noted that the majority of dogs that ended their careers either lost their life or were sent abroad and that rescue centres were packed with dogs that had finished their running lives. She hoped that the council would support her and those that had signed the petition and would call on the owners of the stadium to stop this cruel sport and close the stadium.

 

66.4      Councillor Hills thanked Sarah for the petition and stated that she would like to see the end of such exploitation and that it had no place in a caring city. However, it was not in the remit of the council to be able to do anything other than to recognise the level of support that existed for the petition.

 

66.5      Councillors Brown and O’Quinn spoke on the petition and noted that charity events were held at the stadium and that the actual sport was not illegal or unregulated. It was also recognised that the protests had an impact on residents and if the stadium closed it would have impact on jobs.

 

66.6      The Mayor thanked Sarah Whitehead for presenting the petition and then sought the Council’s agreement to put the recommendation to the vote which was agreed. He therefore called on each of the Group Leaders to confirm their position as well as the Groups in turn and each of the Independent Members.

 

66.7      Councillor Mac Cafferty stated that the Green Group were in favour of the recommendation to note the petition and this was confirmed by the Green Group Members;

 

66.8      Councillor Platts stated that the Labour Group were in favour of the recommendation to note the petition and this was confirmed by the Labour Group Members;

 

66.9      Councillor Bell stated that the Conservative were against the recommendation to note the petition and this was confirmed by the Conservative Group Members;

 

66.10   Councillor Brennan confirmed that she was voting in favour of the recommendation to note the petition;

 

66.11   Councillor Fishleigh confirmed that she wished to abstain from voting on the recommendation;

 

66.12   Councillor Janio confirmed that he was voting against the recommendation to note the petition;

 

66.13   Councillor Knight confirmed that she was voting in favour of the recommendation to note the petition.

 

66.14   The Mayor then invited Emma Daniel to present the petition concerning the costs of secondary school uniform in Brighton and Hove.

 

66.15   Emma Daniel thanked the Mayor and stated that there was  need to encourage schools to review the costs of uniforms and the number of items that were required to make-up a uniform that were branded and only available from a restricted number of suppliers. She also felt that there should be an upper cost limit for uniforms and hoped that the Council would work with the petitioners to get an agreed change across the city’s schools.

 

66.16   Councillor Clare thanked Emma for her petition and noted that the final responsibility for determining the costs of uniforms and their supply lay with the various schools and their governing bodies. She acknowledged the work of her predecessor and that of Councillor Knight as the previous Deputy Chair of the CYPS Committee in seeking to poverty-proof the school day and encourage schools to address the costs of school uniforms. She also noted that the pandemic had impacted om the situation and hoped that different options such as having second-hand uniform available through the schools could be taken forward.

 

66.17   Councillor Allcock moved an amendment on behalf of the Labour Group which sought to reassure the community that the Council wanted to work with Secondary Heads to help parents and to address the high cost of uniforms.

 

66.18   Councillor Hamilton formally seconded the amendment and noted that more parents were now governors of schools and hoped that they could also help to influence change across the city.

 

66.19   Councillors Bell, Knight and Hills spoke on the petition and the amendment and agreed that the matter needed to be looked at with a view to reaching a uniform cost for school uniform across the schools in the city.

 

66.20   The Mayor thanked Ms. Daniel for joining the meeting and presenting the petition and noted that an amendment had been moved.

 

66.21   The Mayor then sought the Council’s agreement to put the recommendations as amended to the vote which was agreed and he therefore called on each of the Group Leaders to confirm their position as well as the Groups in turn and each of the Independent Members.

 

66.22   Councillor Mac Cafferty stated that the Green Group were in favour of the recommendations as amended and this was confirmed by the Green Group Members;

 

66.23   Councillor Platts stated that the Labour Group were in favour of the recommendations as amended and this was confirmed by the Labour Group Members;

 

66.24   Councillor Bell stated that the Conservative were against the recommendations as amended and this was confirmed by the Conservative Group Members;

 

66.25   Councillor Brennan confirmed that she was voting in favour of the recommendations as amended;

 

66.26   Councillor Fishleigh confirmed that she was voting in favour of the recommendations as amended;

 

66.27   Councillor Janio confirmed that he was voting in favour of the recommendations as amended;

 

66.28   Councillor Knight confirmed that she was voting in favour of the recommendations as amended.

 

66.29   The Mayor confirmed that the recommendations as amended had been carried.

 

66.30   RESOLVED:

 

(1)    That the petition be noted and referred to the Children, Young People & Skills Committee for consideration; and

 

(2)    That officers prepare a report for the Children, Young People & Skills Committee in March 2021 that:

·     details the uniform policy and associated costs for a child in each local authority secondary school, voluntary sector secondary school and secondary academy in our city;

·     describes the support currently available for any families experiencing economic hardship and struggling to ensure compliance with the uniform policy for their school; and

·     provides options to further reduce the financial burden of school uniform requirements on disadvantaged families (to be explored in partnership with school head teachers and governors).

Supporting documents:

 


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