"Big Society" Spanish version - Page 2

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"Big Society" Spanish version - Page 2


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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 9th July 2012, 02:10 PM
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I used this video about what was happening in Higuera in class in March! Not sure what took El País in English so long to report it!
Small Spanish villages face big budget woes - CNN.com
It's interesting 'cos you see the home for the elderly which was very poorly designed and which the village obviously didn't have the money for, reminding us of disused airport, museums and goodness knows what else.

As for picking up a broom myself, I've got no qualms about sweeping streets if it's necessary or if it's to help someone out, but it does grate when
A) I've already paid for someone else to do it
B) The money, sorry MY money has been used for something else or has literally been stolen by someone who may well be my neighbour.
C) The person that was supposedly being paid for this is now either unemployed or not getting paid, while others do the work for free.
D) If I don't do it I'm making my own situation worse as I see my own environment deteriorate.
I guess the best solution is sweep up and shut up

Ana Botella, Mayor of Madrid, wanted to launch a programme where volunteers would work in libraries under the orders of librarians. This was supposed to start in March and last for 6 months. The administration say that without volunteers the libraries might have to close. So, are these socially aware politicians trying to keep public amenities open or are they doing worthy citizens out of a job??

PS I don't know if this scheme went ahead. What I do know is that according to the press they were inundated with possible volunteers
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Old 9th July 2012, 02:14 PM
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We already sweep our own bit of street, it's what is already done. As for paying off all that the alcalde has pocketed...
But in these circumstances, what do you think? Is sweeping the street yourself going to better the situation or not?

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:18 PM
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I have been sweeping/weeding our street for the last 8 years and in all that time I have never seen anyone else with a broom in their hand. Our town hall have not swept our streets since they were elected whereas with the previous administration it was done every fortnight.
No house owner sweeps any part of the street in our urba either. The roadsweeper comes around about once a month. As for the practise of dousing the pavement/ street with bleach - no thanks! What good does that do?

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:27 PM
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No house owner sweeps any part of the street in our urba either. The roadsweeper comes around about once a month. As for the practise of dousing the pavement/ street with bleach - no thanks! What good does that do?
neither do we - the caretaker does that & we pay community fees for it

in our town in general though, there are volunteer diving groups who clean up the coastline at the end of the season & also various others who clean up the walks between all the miradores at least once a year

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:32 PM
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neither do we - the caretaker does that & we pay community fees for it

in our town in general though, there are volunteer diving groups who clean up the coastline at the end of the season & also various others who clean up the walks between all the miradores at least once a year
Well exactly. And what would you think if you paid the community fees, but the caretaker didn't get paid and then you were asked to clean them youself with the caretaker standing next to you?

Oh, and I pay the town tall to clean my street - once a month - if we're lucky.

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:34 PM
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In my village in Asturias the town hall are rather fanatical about cleaning the streets so not an issue there.

In my Hampshire village a few years back we created the litter patrol. Two full time jobs to back up road sweepers and rubbish collection. And a great job they do. So no probs there.

If I lived in that spanish village I would like to see those involved in the idiotic plan and associated corruption out cleaning the streets. And I would pay the former street cleaners to beat them with sticks to guarantee a high standard. And I'd get the money by confiscating all property for those responsible.

Clean village, example set, no job losses, less corruption

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:38 PM
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Well exactly. And what would you think if you paid the community fees, but the caretaker didn't get paid and then you were asked to clean them youself with the caretaker standing next to you?

Oh, and I pay the town tall to clean my street - once a month - if we're lucky.
I'd be pretty furious if I paid the fees & the caretaker didn't get paid, didn't do the work & watched me do it! I'd be happy enough to do my patch though if the community fees were less & we all cleaned our bit of 'street' & he looked after the pool & garden (it's a gated urb)

for some reason the port area of our town is VERY well swept - the rest of the town doesn't seem to be

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Old 9th July 2012, 02:39 PM
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But in these circumstances, what do you think? Is sweeping the street yourself going to better the situation or not?
The ayuntamiento employs a small gang of people to do various works around the village - repainting the pedestrian crossings, walls and railings, etc, sweeping public areas (park, paseo, etc).

Keeping the streets swept and clean of the usual detritus (dog poo, handbills, cigarette and sweet wrappers, etc) is something that has always been done by the householders as a matter of pride. The only thing I do object to is the old dears who will insist on getting on their hands and knees and polishing the 'sidewalk' tiles - some of them are like glass - and when it rains or they get dust on them (sahara days in particular) they are lethal.

To be fair, our local taxes are not high and I saw the heliport being used for the first time today (shifted most of the dust and sand from the last sahara blow - chopper completely disappeared from view for a couple of minutes - perhaps they are also going to use this as the way to clean the streets as well!)


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Old 9th July 2012, 02:48 PM
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I'd be pretty furious if I paid the fees & the caretaker didn't get paid, didn't do the work & watched me do it! I'd be happy enough to do my patch though if the community fees were less & we all cleaned our bit of 'street' & he looked after the pool & garden (it's a gated urb)

for some reason the port area of our town is VERY well swept - the rest of the town doesn't seem to be
Yes, and that's the situation that these people are in. That's why I say it's sweep up and shut up. Another case of you're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't. There's not much point of folding your arms and saying "I've paid my taxes and I'm not going to sweep the road" 'cos it's just going to get full of crap, isn't it? On the other hand you've got cleaners employed by the town hall, who may or may not have been paid, and you're doing their work for them...

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Old 9th July 2012, 05:52 PM
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I don't have a problem with what they are doing in Higuera, because it's an emergency situation and it's better to get out there with a broom than sit around complaining while the rubbish piles up.

There's nothing wrong with the voluntary sector doing what it does best, including services like ADANA. I don't think taxpayers' money should be spent on keeping unwanted dogs alive, especially when cuts are being made to health and social care for humans.

But volunteers shouldn't be taking the place of paid employees as a routine cost-saving exercise. It might start off as a short-term emergency measure but it could end up like the UK, where librarians who have been made redundant are now being asked to keep libraries open by working without pay.
This is a pointless debate if it is restricted to specific instances and it has rightly evolved into one of principle. So it is about citizens' responsibility as well as paying people to do jobs. After all, the thread title refers to the 'Big Society' so it is clearly intended to be about a principle.

The principle is clear and simple: people should be employed to do certain jobs in and for the community. The question as to what jobs is another matter.
Money to pay people comes from citizens in the community. Perhaps they should be consulted as to what they would be prepared to do themselves and what they would prefer to pay for.
But when there is no money for whatever reason, you pick up your broom, work in your library....or nothing is done for the community.
As for funding dog rescue....do you really think that people would be happy to see the bloated stinking carcases of dogs littering the streets?

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