‘Slanderous and sometimes racist abuse’: Councillor hits back at critics

Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron
Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron
  • Councillor hits out a protest group
  • Reveals some abuse is racist in nature
  • Rainford Action Group called his appointment ‘deliberately provocative’
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St Helens’ economic development chief has hit back at criticism of his appointment, revealing that he and other councillors have been victims of “slanderous and sometimes racist” abuse.

Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron was speaking to the Reporter after the Rainford Action Group described his election to the role of cabinet member for growth as “deliberately provocative”.

I have always given the benefit of the doubt that the personal, slanderous and sometimes racist comments that Councillors and MPs have received from members of these groups in relation to the Local Plan have been a minority of people

Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron

And in what represents a new low in relations between the campaign group and the Newton ward councillor, he dismissed the statement from James Wright, chairman of the group, as “personal abuse”.

Coun Gomez-Aspron added: “The Local Plan is currently in the process of reviewing the consultation input. Based on that input, Council Policy to develop brownfield first and Government requirement to build houses, the finalised version of the Local Plan will then be produced later this year.

“It’s disappointing to see Mr Wright’s comments. I have always given the benefit of the doubt that the personal, slanderous and sometimes racist comments that Councillors and MPs have received from members of these groups in relation to the Local Plan have been a minority of people.

“I’m always happy to listen to reasonable and realistic feedback. But none of us have to listen to personal abuse.

“The public have elected a Labour Council to deliver jobs and housing for our residents. And that is what we as a council will do.”

Mr Wright criticised the decision to appoint Coun Gomez-Aspron to the economic growth role citing his work on the council’s local plan, which recommended allowing building homes on Rainford greenbelt.

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