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Tuesday, 18 November 2014
First with the news

Calls continue for failed councillor resignation

After government inspectors took-over her Children's Services responsibilities, Labour-run Slough Council continue to pay redundant Cllr Pavitar Mann but critics say she should not be paid for putting children at risk

Report and photographs: Slough Times staff
Cllr Miss Pavitar Mann (Labour, Britwell)

A former political leader of Slough Council is leading calls for the resignation of the under-performing executive councillor for Children & Families matters, after the councillor privatised half her responsibilities and the remaining half was taken-away by the UK government following years of council incompetence and neglect.

The resignation calls have prompted a Slough Party spokesman to ask the council's Cabinet member for Children's Services, Pavitar Mann:-

  • Whether she has any personal regrets about the national government taking away from Slough Council the control and organisation of Children's Services because of the council's record of 3 years of sub-standard performance putting vulnerable children at risk.
  • Whether the Slough Cabinet member has any intention of relinquishing all or any part of her Cabinet responsibility payment because her role and work is now done by a Central Government appointee (Eleanor Brazil).
  • Whether the Cabinet member will resign from her, effectively redundant, Cabinet position and/or from Slough Council.

Labour-lead Slough Council allow only one question from each member of the public. Only the first 5 submitted questions will be answered at next week's council meeting on Tuesday 25 November, starting at 19:00 in The Centre, Farnham Road, Slough.

The Slough Party is a group of residents unhappy with the performance and attitude of Slough Unitary Authority (the official name of Slough Borough Council since 1998). Slough Party thinks the council should serve the public instead of councillors and senior officials serving themselves to the public's money.

Rob Anderson (Leader), James Swindlehurst (Deputy Leader), Roger Davis (councillor)

Cllr Rob Anderson dismissed his loyal Labour Cabinet member Fiza Matloob on 22 December 2011 (reported in the Slough Observer on 7 January 2012) because he wanted to create a vacancy for a Fiona MacTaggart MP helper, police sergeant's daughter Pavitar Mann. It was a wonderful Christmas present for Pav as she is affectionately known. Mr Matloob thought it was a stab in the back in the murky world of Slough Labour politics.

On 4 January 2013, Rob Anderson appointed Pavitar Mann as the executive councillor for all Slough Council's Children & Families services. (source: Slough Conservatives). Labour, because of their many connections to the former Communist Party, call their executive councillors Commissioners.

The responsibility appears to have been too much for young Pavitar, who Labour sources say is much more interested in her daytime job as an Account Executive and now Account Director.

9 months after taking over the borough's Children & Families responsibilities Pavitar privatised half of them - education. Giving away essential public services to a commercial company lifted a considerable burden from her delicate and frail shoulders. Pavitar was reported on the BBC web site saying:-

... working with our schools to bring in a provider to deliver our education services will mean we have greater capacity for improvement and broader access to a range of specialist expertise.

We will continue to be a strong champion for educational standards in the borough and by taking on a more strategic, commissioning role, we will also be able to be flexible and respond to future changes in policy and funding.

Now free of children's educational responsibilities Pavitar failed to devote sufficient time, energy and resources to improving Slough's dreadful Children and Families Social Services.

Despite the damning 2011 OFSTED criticism, Pavitar failed in her duties as an Executive Councillor to produce the urgently needed reforms.

Eventually, after two damning 2013 OFSTED reports, published in 2014, the UK government was forced to take action to ensure the well-being of Slough's vulnerable children.

Former council Leader speaks out

Retired former council Leader, Richard Stokes, with 27 years experience as a Slough councillor, said:-

It is not surprising that the public lose faith in politicians when standards intended to protect the public are abandoned.

There was a time when a politician who had failed in their public duties would have done the honourable thing and resigned.

Slough Council has one of the worse records in the country. During the last 6 years it has failed to protect our most vulnerable children, yet not a single councillor or senior council officer has resigned. Inadequate senior officers have been given generous 'golden handshakes' as a reward for their serious lapses, excellent references and then, with total impunity, allowed to fail again elsewhere.

I call on Cllr Pavitar Mann and the rest of the Slough Council Cabinet to resign accompanied by all the responsible senior officers. They have failed to make any beneficial contribution to children or to their families. All they have done is to preside over a dreadful service whilst taking the public's money. The public really does deserve a lot better.

Campaigning Langley Mum joins-in

Langley mother Sharon O'Reilly said:-

Slough's Children & Families services are supposed to provide a good professional service supporting children and families in times of crisis and need.

Poor management prevents social workers doing their jobs properly. It causes many social workers to resign.

The council has shown a blatant disregard by overloading social workers so much that staff have difficulties coping. Stressed-out social workers are afraid to speak-out because of the council's culture of fear, bullying and intimidation. Meanwhile the needs of children have been ignored.

Offering payments of £500, disguised as good will gestures, to persuade families to discontinue complaints is not in the best interest of vulnerable children.

Children and Families panels should include independent lay people to ensure a proper and beneficial service will be delivered to all those who need help.

The question to Cllr Miss Pavitar Mann

Anti-corruption campaigner Paul Janik said:-

I welcome the government's intervention to improve children's services in Slough. It is shocking that Slough Council have carelessly put children's safety at risk. They just do not seem to care about anything.

A properly run alternative to the council's badly failing Children's service will, I hope, prevent many dubious practises ever happening again including the seizing of newly born babies from their mothers' arms - something that upset a senior High Court judge.

Paul Janik's question for next week's council meeting is:-

Has the SUA Commissioner for Children's Services, Miss Mann (Labour, Britwell), any personal regrets that Central Government has had to take-over the services, in the form of the proposed external organisation which SUA thinks will then take 3 years before the service might change from bad or dreadful to 'good', and have those regrets, if any, made her reduce the money she receives from SUA for her Children's responsibilities - aware that Central Government's appointee Mrs Brazil is effectively doing Miss Mann's Cabinet job for her - and has Miss Mann sufficient regret and remorse to resign for her fundamental failures to provide to the children of Slough a 'good service' or is this just another dismal Slough Council failure just like Doncaster and similar failing Labour Party local government administrations ?

It was an impossible task for young Pavitar. It takes a different personality to aggressively force through improvements and to kick-out sub-standard council staff who think the public owes them a living.

We question whether Pavitar was more interested in her personal appearance that in the children's welfare. If the former, why did she accept public payment for giving her make-up priority ? If the later, where oh where is the proof ?

Slough Council has always been a failing council lacking firm political control, lacking competent staff and lacking a desire to excel in serving the public.

Pavitar is mistaken when she arrogantly and dismissively assumes - despite her acknowledged intelligence - that everything 'Labour' is perfect. She also lacks the concerns of normal people and failed to get the street light at the end of her road fixed - probably too accustomed to council neglect and council disinterest throughout Slough.

Where were Pavitar's skills during the Children's crisis ?

On the American web site Linked-In Pavitar boasts of her skills:-

Skills

  1. Political Campaigns
  2. Public Affairs
  3. Politics
  4. Public Policy
  5. Political Communication
  6. Stakeholder Engagement
  7. Strategic Communications
  8. Local Government
  9. Media Relations
  10. Policy Analysis
  11. Grassroots Organizing
  12. Community Engagement
  13. Reputation Management
  14. Speech Writing
  15. Public Relations
  16. Policy
  17. Crisis Communications
  18. Government
  19. Press Releases
  20. Community Development
  21. Internal Communications
  22. Public Speaking

Residents of her Britwell ward told the Slough Times their local councillor Miss Pavitar Mann does not return their telephone calls. They also claim never to see her in the streets.

If Pavitar wishes to give her version we will consider it for publication. If her police sergeant father starts his threatening behaviour in a public place again, we will not hesitate in dialling 112 and then formerly complaining to the IPCC (Independent Police Complaints Commission).

Perhaps if Miss Mann returns as a councillor in 20 years, after experiencing more of normal life and gaining some genuine compassion for the less affluent and having brought-up her own children, she could be an impressive performer.

Rob Anderson is regarded by the Slough Times as a hands-off council Leader. Some elderly Labour Party supporters claim he is not hands-off but feet-up. The evidence is all over Slough but Labour has no shame, no concern and no pride - they want the public's vote but not public responsibility.



  1. Interested in what Richard Stokes had to say, as well as the comment on Anderston's Leadership style.
  2. Why does Rob Anderson look like Ed Millipede? His teeth are like the cartoon caricature of hapless Ed!
  3. Nice pics !!!!!
  4. Very good, it seems you are the only one trying to embarrass the Council into action. Alas from what I have read you will not succeed, as they all seem corrupt, not necessarily in the form of monetary gain but in the form of power.

    I sincerely hope you succeed as it seems the people of Slough need a champion.

    Good luck, Best regards,
  5. Brilliant! Congratulations!
  6. well done