Labour candidate rages at council’s ‘degrading’ response to pavement complaints

A man was stunned to see politics brought into a pavement repair dispute after his local council disparaged him from making a complaint.

Finlay Gordon-McCusker, 20, filed a complaint with Stoke-on-Trent City Council after falling down on a local road.

The Labour candidate for next year's elections not only waited months from a response but when he did, was shocked to discover the tone in which the council responded with.

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The response stated: "The footways aren’t in great condition and would be better if they can be resurfaced/reconstructed rather than small repairs.

“Mr Gordon-McCusker would be better served trying to get us more funding from the government so that we can do a better and proper job instead of inundating an already overloaded system with more complaints.”

Finlay raged at the council's response, admitting he was "so angry".

“I was really, really disappointed because whoever wrote it has 100 per cent brought politics into it by saying that about getting funding.

“At the end of the day, this isn’t about politics. This is about people in the area who have awful pavements – they can't go out and walk their dogs, some people have told me, because they're frightened of going out."

The 20-year-old said the council don't seem to care about the people they're affecting with their lack of action as people can't ride their mobility scooters due to the poor state of the pavements and stated his political leaning should not decide whether the council take a matter seriously or not.

“There shouldn’t be something where just because I wear a red rosette, what I report doesn’t get taken seriously. People frankly deserve better.

“Anyone who reports something to the council is trying to do their bit to make the place a little bit better.

“If I wasn’t standing to be a councillor, and I’d just seen something on my street, and I had received that response, I’d never want to report anything again.

“And that’s how we get to this state of things not getting picked up and the city just becoming a worse place to live.”

A council spokesman apologised to Finlay and said the council will look to ensure that this never happens again.

The spokesman added: “We always welcome reports of highways defects from anyone living inside or outside the city and expect our employees to respond with the upmost professionalism.”

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