Last Wednesday in the North London borough of Barnet, a woman apparently driven to desperation by her situation set herself alight in the housing office of Tory-run Barnet council. She was last reported in critical but stable condition in hospital and an update on her condition is awaited from the Metropolitan Police.
Other people in the building were hurriedly evacuated and video of gathered emergency vehicles subsequently emerged.
The mainstream media ignored the incident.
But the SKWAWKBOX has uncovered further details that show the tragedy could have been far worse – and which reveal, according to local sources, a ‘shambolic’ management situation at the council with outsourced health and safety arrangements that failed.
This blog has learned that when the incident took place, the fire alarms on the affected floor of the council office failed to work, exacerbating the situation – eyewitnesses had already reported that they only knew about the fire when someone came into the interview room they were using and told them they needed to leave immediately. To get out of the building, they had to pass the poor victim in flames.
The SKWAWKBOX has also discovered that the victim had brought in a liquid accelerant concealed in a soft drink bottle which she poured over herself – and that this was not spotted during security checks already in place because of earlier attempted suicides in the building.
The council had not, as of last night, confirmed that other fire alarms in the building had been checked and were working.
Capita, the outsourced safety provider, was asked for comment but deferred to Barnet council’s press office response.
Barnet council, which refused to comment last week, eventually responded with this:
We can confirm that an incident took place at Barnet House on Wednesday, 15 August. The Metropolitan Police Service is currently investigating this matter and it would be therefore inappropriate to comment any further.
None of those the SKWAWKBOX has spoken to – Met Police, Barnet Council or Capita – have disputed that the incident was a self-immolation.
Barnet council has implemented outsourced security measures because other desperate people have attempted suicide in its offices before. Those measures failed last Wednesday.
The mainstream media are not reporting this horrific depiction of the desperation inflicted on the vulnerable in our society – even though it is only the latest in a string of attempted suicides.
Cuts. Callousness. Desperation so bad multiple people have tried to kill themselves at the office of a council. Media complicity.
Tory Britain in 2018.
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