County councillor Karen Constantine Seeing Red: Isn’t it time for positive change?

Cllr Karen Constantine

There is just so much to be concerned about. Rising prices, the cost of heating our homes, the on-going global warming crisis and effluent in our seas. (I’m being polite!)

In recent weeks thousands of Thanet people have turned out for demonstrations locally and nationally, to express their concerns about the direction the country is taking.

There have been two demonstrations outside the Manston migrant camp. Concerns have been raised about the appalling conditions – scabies, diphtheria, food shortages, the harsh living conditions created by inadequate tented accommodation, and unaccompanied asylum seeking children sleeping on floors with little or no support. We’re also heard the alarming news of a racially motivated fire bomb attack in Dover.

Most of the people fleeing in small boats across the English Channel are coming from Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, and Albania. Some are vulnerable and are being trafficked, ruthlessly exploited for financial gain. Despite knowing the scale of the challenge our local MP is failing to offer any solutions, and despite the Conservative Immigration Minister, Robert Jenerick stating: “We gripped this immediately when we appreciated the scale of the challenge at the weekend, it’s now falling very rapidly and I expect that we’ll get down to an acceptable level within about seven days.”

That was almost a week ago, but the situation at Manston remains inhumane, illegal and untenable. A clear sign that this Government has failed to deal effectively with a predictable crisis. One that is likely to be challenged through the courts, resulting no doubt, in an eye watering bill for the tax payer.

The Government needs to stop using migrants as a political football and step up asylum applications. It’s a failure of this Government, cutting staff, so that many claimants wait for so long to be processed. The Home Affairs Select Committee revealed that of all the people who arrived in the UK by boat and claimed asylum in 2021, only 4% of claims have been processed by the Home Office. That means that 96% of people who arrived in the UK by boat in 2021 have not yet received a decision from the Home Office on their asylum claims. The 2022 cohort will add pressure to an already inadequate, buckling system.

No wonder we have a big problem. This Government is failing to deal with the backlog. Infact since the previous Home Secretary Priti Patel took office, the numbers of asylum seekers waiting for claims to be dealt with for more than six months has trebled. The new Home Secretary Suella Braverman seems even less inclined to deal with the problem. She has insisted in the House of Commons that she did not block emergency accommodation for migrants awaiting processing after crossing the English Channel. She has also resorted to inflammatory language calling the influx an ‘invasion’.

Many local residents have contacted me and are very unhappy with the situation at Manston. We are a compassionate nation, and our Isles are frankly full of migrants, people who have moved here over the decades. The UK actually takes less migrants that other European countries.

I think it’s time a proper solution was found, one that doesn’t dehumanise vulnerable people, one that recognises their rights and one that, where possible, sees willing hands put to work where they are needed. A recent survey showed that more than 50% of businesses in the UK are experiencing skills shortages, and that this could be a threat to their economic growth.

Meanwhile the Bank of England has lifted interest rates from 2.25% to 3% the biggest rise since 1989. This is the Bank’s eighth hike since December and takes borrowing costs to their highest rate since 2008.

We know how rising interest rates impact us! Everything costs more. England Bank Boss Andrew Bailey has warned of a “tough road ahead” and that “the UK is facing its longest recession since records began.” Interest rates are now expected to peak at 4.5% while inflation will hit 11% before falling next year. (Let’s hope so!) The Bank of England Boss went on to say, “The poorest 10% of households will be hit hardest, because they spend twice as much of their budget as the richest 10% on utilities and food.”

The poor always shoulder the burden of economic mismanagement.

Meanwhile we are all waiting for Jeremy Hunt’s statement on 17th November where he is expected to outline tax measures and spending cuts amounting to £50bn. Are we going to be subject to ‘austerity 2.0?’

Things are looking bleaker and bleaker. I’m not surprised some Conservative MPs would like to continue to pretend the current economic crisis, which means many people are choosing between heating and eating, rising homelessness, and growing poverty, is the result of migration and not failed Tory policies.

We can do better than this. No wonder outgoing TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady says, “In the last decade, the richest have enjoyed huge increases in their wealth. The government should now look at how they can contribute more to rebuilding an economy that works for everyone.”

We can tax more fairly, we can close the Non Dom loop hole, we can run an economy that works for everybody and doesn’t contribute to global warming.

Isn’t it time for positive change?


  1. Hi cost of living is affecting all of us not just people on benefits or pip and deffo not the immagrants so how comes every single person even those that live in static vans on sites don’t receive these payments as we are struggling as well as everyone else so think about it

    • peter checksfield,
      You will have noticed that there is no commenting allowed on the post that reports on the use of the campus by scores of young single male illegal immigrants.
      I call it censorship.

    • Constantine admits that she actively protests for the migrants who have travelled here illegally and she stands shoulder to shoulder with the far left organisers who are campaigning to do away with border control. Wow, how out of touch can you be.

      Karen should go and speak the to the vast majority of the population who are now sick of the constant arrivals of illegal migrants. Standing holding placards in support of illegal immigrants is only playing into the traffickers hands and encouraging more illegal immigrants. Perhaps it’s time Karen removed herself from her far left bubble. Without borders there’s mayhem and that’s what Karen is now advocating for.
      Genuine asylum seekers are welcome but when people burn their passports and travel here illegally they are here illegally and need to be sent home or back to one of the many safe European countries they travelled through to get here.

      • And when we were in the EU, that’s exactly what happened.
        But we chose Brexit. We now have regained our Sovereignty and control of our borders. But we can’t return asylum seekers to the EU country they came from, because we’re not part of the EU any longer.

      • In case you hadn’t noticed Concerned there hasn’t been any border control for a long time, which is why record numbers of asylum seekers have been arriving this year-despite the Tory/UKIP lies about Brexit meaning the UK could take back control of said borders etc.

        • There is a massive accommodation problem throughout the UK, due to one M. Thatcher selling off council houses! By chance I found myself in Germany visiting my wife’s family, when the Berlin came down. In the following weeks tens of thousands of people came over from East Germany to the West seeking work, and I remember my German Father-in- Law saying, it won’t be any problem for Dortmund, because the council have built 20,000 too many council apartments!

          Then a short while ago, Germany took in 1 million Syrian refugees, who were welcomed by and large, as they were well educated, and Germany needed the workers! Britain has a labour/skill shortage too, and because of fiscal mismanagement by successive Tory governments, property has been allowed to out price itself, causing chaos! I have another word for the Conservatives, who like to conserv, I call them retards!

          • That should read “The Berlin Wall came down”. I watched it in Germany at the time, with my German wife. Many West Germans were not too happy later, because their income tax went up alarmingly for ten years, to re-invest in the East!

        • Steve, it doesn’t help when politicians like Karen Constantine and the far left MPs hold placards at marches saying all refugees welcome and abolish all borders. It also doesn’t help when labour groups also fund court cases trying to prevent the legitimate removal of illegal immigrants from this country.

          • I’m getting fed up pointing out the bleeding obvious, but its worth repeating for Concerned’s benefit. The migrants are coming here because they can’t be returned to the first EU country they arrived at, which they would have been if we were still in the EU. Got that Concerned? The vast majority of Migrants (92% according to the Independent newspaper 31/10/22) are granted asylum status. The remaining 8% if not granted asylum can be removed back to their country of origin. Is that clear enough Concerned? Blame the Brexiteers if you must blame someone for migrants coming here!

  2. do we have any information on the private firms to which the governmemt is outsourcing the problems of finding accommodation for those being moved from Manston
    , and the people who have financial stakes in them? Are connections of the government making a tidy profit from them?

    • You can bet that there is 🙂 you don’t get awarded ten year contracts for nothing. Need a journalist to do a bit of digging.

      • This is the government who awarded their friends the PPE contracts over the experts & which ended up being totally useless equipment to the tune of nearly 9 billion being thrown away or still sitting in containers at docks.

        A government who gave a contract for a ferry operator to a company with no ferries, no experience at running ferries & who stole their T&C from a takeaway website. So yes, it is all about who you know or how low you undercut the actual experts, rather than what you can do.

  3. Cllr Karen Constantine tells us nothing new. The Labour Party offers us no real alternative in this economic crisis.
    Just some empty guff about positive change. The same old platitudes.

  4. Hasnt Brexit really improved our lives.This country is finished.Well at least we got our Sovereignty back and can manage our country from Westminster…ha ha.The U turn party are out of touch with real life.

  5. If you want voters to vote for you you better start saying and doing want voters want. We don’t want migrants with diphtheria and criminality coming to our shores. Watch Panorama tonight it will educate you.

    • Karen Constantine is not really political nor democratic, Bill. She follows looney Left gender rubbish and “wimmin’s rights”.
      Anything regarding what ordinary folk want is beyond her. She sticks to the usual lefty clichés and hopes no one challenges her.

      • Robert your comments labelling Karen as following “looney left gender rubbish” and “ wimmins rights” sound like a right wing, dated, Daily Mail inspired cliche.

  6. Labour will state the problems but never give answers to the problems even a poor conservative government is better than a Labour one.

  7. There are over 200 million people of British ancestry all over the Wotld.Maybe we should ask them to return home. .We would be over crowded then.Are British people the only people in the World allowed to emigrate to enjoy or improve their lives.Seems like it.

    • The difference is there are two main sorts of migration,

      A) you move to another place, with skills a bit of capital and the intention of paying your own way from day one , respecting the country you move to and integrating or earning enough to live as you please.
      B) Rocking up unannounced, expecting everything to be laid at your feet, expecting to behave as you did in your homeland , having no wish to integrate unless it suits you.

      Very different ways of seeking a new life.

      • LC.
        Spot on! Couldn’t have put it better myself.
        Those like Dave do not open their eyes, engage their brains, and see reality.

    • Dave, the land mass of the UK is tiny compared to the rest of the European Union. We are one of the most over populated countries in the Western world. Our farmland , green spaces and wildlife habitats are disappearing at an increasing and frightening rate to build housing stock for our over burgeoning population.We simply haven’t got the resources or land mass the for uncontrolled mass migration that Karen Constantine and the far Left in the Labour Party support and actively encourage.
      Perhaps illegal immigration could be solved if the Labour Party actively engaged with the conservatives instead of blocking every policy designed to halt illegal mass migration by taking the government to the courts.
      As for you claims about 200 million people of English ancestry living abroad, please remember that they migrated legally and didn’t sneak in the back door, it’s also worth noting that most of the countries they have migrated to work on a points based system where you have to prove you have enough finances to pay for yourself, already have a job, speak the language to a sufficient standard and you can’t automatically sign on to the welfare state.

    • Seeing as most white people have a significant amount of African DNA & most Africans have significant levels of white DNA we should swap places?

  8. If your worried about criminality wasnt it the British who sent thousands of criminals to Australia. Thats where the trend started.Oh and gangs sending slaves to the Americas for our own benefits, dicnt that start here too.Now its on the other foot.

  9. If migrants want to be processed faster , then arrivng with some verifiable documentation for ID and backstory would help their case no end. They seem to manage to arrive with their phones.
    As for the conditions they are kept in, unfortunately it’s the downside of the choices they’ve made. And it’s hardly going last an eternity.
    Living costs are rising for everybody , i’d guess that only the rather well off don’t notice. I’ve no doubt that just about every household that works full time is going to be worse off via taxation a year hence.
    The “ poor” will have to tighten their belts as well.
    Interest rates hitting 3% is hardly a surprise, there had to be a return to some sort of normality eventually.
    As for the uni campus, tdc dilly dallied too long and lost out, whether it was ideal or not for families i’m pretty sure they could have filled it with local people more than happy to live there.
    At least cliftonville isn’t going to be a dumping ground for the unwanted , which makes a change. So long as the migrants moved to the uni behave themselves , they’ll not be a problem , if they don’t then that’s why we have a criminal justice system.
    Labour currently have the luxury of being able to sit back and just criticise , if they to be taken seriously , lets have some proper policies set out in an understandable manner with a promise of no deviation if they are elected on the basis of their policies.
    As for water quality , the north foreland treatment plant went on line around 1989, how many more households does it deal with now compared to then, how many tonnes of inappropriate waste are flushed into the system. The only thing that will make them do better is legislation , which will inevitably mean the customers pay more, if everyone accepts that , things could easily move forward.
    The nation / planet have reached a tipping point in financial terms , it’s time to actually live within our means , won’t be popular.

  10. its high time we started putting our own people first , and started looking after thier health and financial needs ,we are not the global superpower some people think , we are a little island that cannot afford to worry about the rest of the worlds detritus

  11. Apparently the current arrivals are far less than 20 years ago, and the government seemed to manage then. I’m surprised that a government that brought in Brexit, cannot control its borders, I though that was what it was for.

  12. The biggest causes of inflation is Brexit absolute fact. It cost more to do the paper work to import and export goods so they are more expensive.
    Migrants used to have to register in the first European country that they arrived in if the application for asylum was accepted then they could travel anywhere within the European Union however since Brexit that does not apply to the UK so they risk their lives to come across the channel illegally to try and get into the UK the number of civil servants as recently reported have been reduced by the government so therefore it takes longer to process so anyone who supported Johnson / Mogg / Farage lies then you only have yourself to blame.

    • Ann, your argument is seriously flawed. The whole of Europe and America are suffering from runaway inflation and all the major economies are substantially putting up interest rates to try to control inflation. If anything the Americans wanted us to put interest rates up higher and earlier.
      Inflation and interest rates are rising because of many things including the invasion of Ukraine, the continuing fallout from Covid, a world that’s spending at an unsustainable rate, energy price inflation due to energy cartels having a monopoly, food inflation due to a population explosion and many other reasons beyond the control of the UK government. Blaming the conservatives for something that is out of their control and a worldwide phenomenon is simply idiot at best.

    • Karen states the obvious without any solutions and just loves a protest. Always on picket lines, and making a fuss about the poor going hungry or cold. I am sure Karen will not suffer from the cold and a little less food may be a benefit , and leave more room for protesters on the picket line

  13. When you were talking about the “effluent in the sea”,I thought you were referring to the illegal economic migrants invading our shores.This dire situation has long gotten out of hand and all you and you like can say is,they are welcome.

  14. So much criticism – on this page, outside Manston, Just Stop Oil protesters on M25 today – but no solutions offered by anyone, including Karen Constantine. And that’s because there is no easy solution to any of these problems.

    Ann – yes, immigrants should register in the first EU country in which they arrive but that has not been happening for years. So the fact we are no longer in the EU doesn’t change this and is not reason for the constant influx of people onto our shores.

    Agree with LC’s comments.

    • Re the M25 protesters. Let the traffic keep going, if one of the idiots gets run over , it’s misadventure, give the unfortunate driver that hits them a million quid for their distress. It’ll be way cheaper than the cost of shutting major roads. And might make protesters think about the risk they’re taking ( currently they’re not) If that solution is deemed unacceptable , then it’s a 12 month minimum sentence and fined for every penny they have.
      Expect many have seen the hysterical wailing of the loon on the gantry today, she needs sectioning and plenty of counselling.

      • The problem is that World governments pay lip service to climate change, but don’t actually do anything. Remember Kyoto? Rio? Decades ago, promises were made, and broken.
        We are on the brink of a climate catastrophe, but nothing is being done. For example, 17,000 new houses are being built in Thanet. All with gas boilers. None with heat pumps or solar panels. Aviation is on the increase. We are encouraged to buy electric cars .. but the infrastructure to support them is non existent. The government is making noises about fracking and gas and oil exploration licences. It cuts fuel duty for private cars, and puts rail fares up.
        Some people feel that if emailing your MP (a climate change denier) and writing to the paper have no effect, then some sort of direct action is needed. Remember the Suffragettes and women’s votes?

        • Climate change very likely, the result of mans activities , far from a certainty. Co2 levels have varied wildly through out the worlds history, as have temperatures. Ice core samples show all sorts of long term variations, the climate change lobbyist’s are fond of presenting graphs with varied scales as opposed to the long term trends.
          The hysterical wailings of mentally weak protestors is more of a threat to the countries well being than carbon emmissions, we missed the low carbon boat when the anti nuclear campaigners killed off reliable long term energy supply in the 80’s. Modern life is what’s unsustainable, far too many resources are expended allowing people to be in pefficient and lazy, whats the carbon footprint of the nations fat/obese/unfit with all the services they consume as a result of their gluttony? With all the advantages we have in modern life we still have parents totallyincapable of raising their children, we accept blatant welfare fraud because it’s convenient, the nhs and public services have wholeheartedly embraced work from home ( otherwise known as duvet, facebook,laundry, online shopping days) no oversight on their productivity and mangers that assign them less work socas to make it look like everything is being done as fast as possible and tha they need more staff to do more ( simultaneously making their little empire larger) it’s why the nhs , councils etc are so inefficient.
          Inefficiency wastes energy and resources, many ways to skin a cat. Paupering ourselves in pusuit of net zero ifor a country of 70 million in a world of 70 billion is just pure madness.

  15. Sorry but UK inflation is the highest in the G20 other than Russia.France inflation is 5%,more than half of UK.I speak fluent French and work there on occassions.Also we have HS1 and are stooling over HS2.France has 36 High Speed trains which travel considerably faster than our 1.Also you dont wait 2 years for an operation its normally 6 to 8 weeks.There roads are pot hole free and even some motorways have soundproof tarmac.They work less hours and are more productive.They also blame us for all the immigrants running around Pas de Calais.The reason being because what takes them weeks takes us years to process and determine what an illegal immigrant is.Sorry but you old Englanders need to get real.

    • If we processed them more rapidly, would France take them back just as quickly? No, thought not.
      Stop listening to the EU propaganda and admit that the French way of accommodating ‘refugees’ (most of them are not by definition) is far more inhumane than anything that happens when they leave the safe country of France and arrive here with no paperwork. I wonder why they are so keen to leave?
      PS. This overcrowded island is FULL UP!

  16. Andrew, From 2015 onwards while participating in the Dublin regulations and still part of the EU we imported more illegal immigrants from other EU countries than we exported . (It’s in the official government figures, if you don’t believe me look it up yourself)

      • Andrew is perfectly correct. In this world, nothing ever seems to be done while we slowly slip towards Amageddon, militarily and climatically.
        You can not rely on politicians to do the right thing so taking up the cudgels and rising up in revolt is the only option.
        Left or Right, you have failed us and will not change for the better. Enough of your empty promises

      • It’s not my mantra: it’s fact.
        Whilst part of the EU, we had the choice, should we choose, to remove asylum seekers to the EU country of origin.
        Now we’ve left the EU, we no longer have that choice.
        As to there being a net influx of migrants since 2015, you’ll need to look at the policies of the government in power at the time.

  17. Oh is KC asking for an early general election. KC recently phoned into LBC radio the subject was manston migrants but KC bombed into the conversation that we need a general election. So far off topic of discussion.
    Yes our lovely country is going through a difficult time, doubt labour party will be any better.There not even good at opposing.
    Think the tories are repairing the roof, labour party would demolish the roof and use it for firewood. Chancellor’s Autumn Statement is due soon it will be harsh and some more belt tightening will see us gradually improve.
    Vote labour absolutely not. !

  18. really out of interest i ask does that labour councillor pay sponsored fees to be on this site. if not why not ?
    Kind of love iotn but often article comments are not responded and were left in the same view that they actually dont care resulting in voting for others.
    Doubt labour will win votes from undecided locals with the current activist way of doing things.
    So disappointed, its not the labour party i supported back in the day.

    • No, it is not the Labour Party we used to know. Then it was a socialist party now regarded as a dirty word among the Starmerites. Karen Constantine does not espouse socialism nor the interests of the English working class. It is Wokeism, the gender benders and foreigners illegally invading our shores. They are her priorities and no one should be fooled by her bogus concern for ordinary folk. It is an odious form of Marxism, even though she has probably never read Das Kapital.
      Note her absence in discussion on here where she would be flummoxed.

  19. I have, have you? If you want a critique of mid victorian society its a belter. You would be better off reading Seebohm Rowntree’s study of the urban poor in York in 1900, because that’s where we are.In fact some people are living in conditions that are worse than those found in York.
    Think about it, here we are in the 21st century, the 5th or 6th richest state on earth, and people are living in the streets in poorly maintained housing, eaking out an existence, and you tell me that’s progress?
    When you talk balderdash, at least bother to stay within some normality.
    You are frothing at the mouth and losing control of your senses because of what’s happened in the last 12 years.
    There is no such thing as ‘Starmerism’.What is the Labour party we used to know? As for the working class they ceased to be in the majority long ago. Most of the population is in various regions of the middle class, but because these terms have ceased to have much relevance they are inadequate descriptions of the social stratas of society.
    Wokeism what that’s then?
    No you are wound up, because finally the lunatics got hold of the asylum and burnt it down in September and October, and you cannot blame anyone else apart from the tory party who gifted Liz Truss to the top job and allowed Boris to blag his way through loads of cash.
    Labour may not be exiting and full of ideas,but at least they know what not to do.
    The wind of change may be turning, I hope so. The americans may be again voting in a bunch of loonies, but at least we don’t have to.

    • George Nokes, you always mention that England is the fifth richest nation in the world but you then fail to mention that The UK national debt is over 2 TRILLION pounds. It’s not racist to want to limit our population, it’s common sense, we simply can’t afford an open border policy.

  20. George Nokes, this country is still riddled with class differences. The working class is among them and identified by background, poor education, way of life and impoverishment.
    Starmer refers to working people instead of the old Labour Party mass support the post-industriial working class. He is repelled by any reference to class, because of its socialist link. Starmerism is the internal reaction to good honest Jeremy Corbin. The two-faced rotters stabbed him in the back.
    What does being the 5th richest state in the world mean? It certainly is not industrial power since our industrial base was destroyed by British governments. The City of London is the main base for “wealth” meaning international banking, scams like insurance and the buying and selling of debt. Most of the wealth remains in the hands of a privilege minority while the vast majority struggle from day to day.

  21. The plain truth is that the boat people risk their lives to get to our coast and then ditch their phones , passports and identity documents. If they were legally eligible to stay in GB I am certain they would not pay criminal gangsters to gain them access to our shores. They ought to be repatriated asap. Karen gives it large but I bet she would not give them beds to sleep in at her home for one day let alone stay here indefinitely.

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