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Concerned Barnet residents debate Barnet Borough Council's One Barnet programme at Phoenix Cinema in East Finchley
The people of Barnet were given the chance to express their concerns about Barnet Borough Council’s policies at a debate last night.
Following the screening of new Barnet documentary, Barnet – The Billion Pound Gamble, at the Phoenix Cinema in East Finchley, a debate ensued.
The discussion gave the 200 audience members and a panel, made up of local bloggers, the chance to debate the council’s controversial policy of outsourcing.
While a range of comments were made, the overwhelming consensus was that people are worried about the policy.
John Dix, who is also known as blogger Mr Reasonable, said: “I have done outsourcing for the last 25 years. I understand this process and I applaud it.
“What I have an issue with is the way the council has done it.
“All the steps they have done have built risk into it.
“Services are being outsourced for the wrong reasons.
“I looked at the business case and the evidence was extremely flimsy.”
The overall conclusion of the debate was that Barnet residents need to seize the opportunity to oppose the policy before it is too late.
However, it was also agreed that a serious problem is many residents’ lack of knowledge and understanding about the One Barnet policy.
Audience member, John Parker, said: “When we talk about One Barnet every citizen is affected in one way or another.
“How do we reach out to ordinary, everyday folk who are really not involved at the moment?
“A massive education movement is required.”
Barnet – The Billion Pound Gamble is a 30 minute documentary about Barnet life.
It is directed by Charles Honderick and produced by Roger Tichbourne as a follow on to their earlier film, the Tale of Two Barnets.
Both films feature a series of interviews with people who live and work in Barnet.