Mayor's Oral Update

MQT on 2014-10-22
Session date: 
October 22, 2014
Question By: 
Roger Evans
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Roger Evans AM (Chairman):  Now it is time for the Mayor to provide an oral update of up to five minutes.  Mr Mayor, I understand that we have asked you to talk about preparations for Ebola.

Supplementary Questions: 


Answer for Mayor's Oral Update

Answer for Mayor's Oral Update

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Boris Johnson (Mayor of London):  Thank you very much. That is right.  There was only one request for an oral update from the Assembly, Roger.  However, very quickly, loads of things are happening since we have last met.  Obviously, we had the Africa on the Square Festival just recently and we are looking forward to Diwali.  Sorry, we have had Diwali.  We have had a parade of kids already to mark Diwali and we are looking forward to further such celebrations. 

On 10 October we had a launch of more cash for the grassroots sports scheme.  This, as you know, has about 250,000 people doing all manner of physical jerks across London since the Olympics and it is being taken up actively across the city. 

We are seeing loads of homes built across London, as everybody can see from the skyline.

One thing that is worth pointing out that is of real interest and importance to our city is the decline in the number of people not in education, employment or training (NEETs) with absolutely extraordinary figures.  We are seeing the lowest rate of NEETs of any region in the United Kingdom (UK).  It is now 11.7% compared to 18.2%, for instance, in the North East and that is a considerable fall in the number of people not in education, employment or training.  There was also a huge fall in people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA).  There are very encouraging things happening in the London economy. 

You have asked for an update on Ebola, Andrew [Andrew Boff, AM], and all I can say is that the situation is pretty much unchanged since we last had a meeting of the advisory group on 9 October.  We had a meeting yesterday, as you may know, with all the emergency services and London Resilience and so forth.  My view is still pretty much that it remains a very serious threat and there is a likelihood that at some stage this country will see some cases.  I cannot say how many.  I do not think it is likely to be very many.  However, at the moment we are continuing to prove fortunate.  The countries that are doing outstandingly well, obviously, at the moment are Nigeria and Senegal, which have declared themselves Ebola-free recently.  That is a great credit to them and it shows what you can do with effective healthcare management. 

That concludes my report, Roger.