So we are tending to see less about clubs as more and more councils have made their decisions about if the new regulations should be applied so I will be a little quieter than in the past until such time as something is worth reporting. Typing to boost my own ego is not something that I want to do but when the need occurs then obviously I will respond.
So Birmingham, a city of over 1 million people has decided that a limit of 8 at the present time is what they should have with councillor Sam Burden wanted to reduce the number more but they have taken note of the issues in Leeds in trying to reduce the number of clubs and have taken some advice from their legal services about grandfather rights. Now the consultation for this massive and diverse population had a total of 52 responses, this including from "stakeholders" who still seem to think that after all the work and results of Pentameter I and II that clubs are havens of trafficking. If only stupidity could be used to rule out responses rather than the council just answering the issues in the report.
So the 52 response had a comment field and apart from the reference to trafficking which the council pointed out the police had no issues with we also saw the tired claim that clubs promote sexual violence and I want to put here in the blog the council response "West Midlands Police have been included in this consultation and have, as yet not provided any evidence to suggest SEV premises contribute to the number of sexual assaults." Bit of an OMG moment that the police having seen the death of Lilith and no doubt with the ability for people to ask for FoIs have decided honesty is the best policy. So 52 people responded and yet only 23 comments were made. Interesting to note the Violence Against Women and Children Steering Group have offered to help gather information and evidence to prove that clubs are bad it seems.
Having read the documents associated with the meeting which was broadcast on the council website (thanks to SEV Licensing for the link here) I have to say there are some very "moralistic" statements being made in the comments fields along with some awful attempts to make claims of things that have no foundation in the real world. If a club is shown to be causing problems then this blog is not here to cover up issues but to encourage best practice. But when the stupid and the misinformed can influence decisions based on"facts" which have no value then the consultation process seems just a little flawed. I did find it amusing that the consultation has not been closed by the council so you have to wonder just how accurate the data was given how few people responded.
Something you see the blog regularly comment on is the fact that so few people actually complain, the response of 52 to the consultation including three people elected to represent the people of Birmingham yet the people of Birmingham seem to not be bothered to limit clubs. The opposite position could also be held to be true but with the Stigma of responding and being required to enter your name in that response the worry of being "outed" as a supporter of clubs would weigh heavily, perhaps a disclaimer that no names would every be disclosed would have garnered more responses. Certainly a response of 0.005% of the population can hardly be considered an opinion, it is little more than a blip on a deviation curve.
Finally readers of this blog would have seem on the last blog piece a link in the comment field to pictures of Object campaigning against XBiz. Now remember the challenge to them to stop people misusing the term rape, the pictures (here) do show that rhetoric, hate speech and misjudged abuse are the tools of people whose arguments hold no value. Still be and shouty with no regard for the law is I guess one of the best things we can now expect from Object as they are disorganised and desperate to raise their profile to the heady heights of being called a hate group.