Foreign aid: charity should begin at home

For months now, we have been reading about, or seeing on TV, reports of protests, demonstrations and petitions etc against cuts in the financing of many of our vital services.

In our own region, there can’t be anyone who isn’t aware of the controversial decision to end the services in the paediatric heart surgery department in Leeds, there are also threats against some departments in the hospitals in both Scarborough and Malton. Other services face the same uncertain futures - services such as the police, fire service, armed forces, to name but three. And all in the name of government cuts!

But surely, there has to be something fundamentally flawed, when, amid all the cuts which will affect many of us, our government continues to pour billions of pounds into the bottomless pit of foreign “aid”?

Some examples of their near-criminal profligacy can be seen in their pumping £2.9 billion into “climate aid” to developing countries. This includes £15 million to Columbian farmers to help solve the problem of flatulent cows, another £31 million to Turkey to help them develop wind power! There are numerous other ludicrous “causes” at which our money is so casually thrown, but there are too many to go into here.

I would ask, how many police officers would those billions of pounds paid for, how many nurses or fire fighters? Why does the government apparently find it acceptable to finance these schemes abroad yet are quite happy to see our own people suffer through cuts in services? After all, everyone is, or will be affected one way or another, whether through job losses or basic health and security issues.

Whilst stopping this appalling waste of money would not cure all of our economic ills, it would surely go quite a long way towards it?

Charity should begin at home.

Trish Scott

West Park Terrace