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About Isitfair

Who or what is Isitfair?

Isitfair was started in October 2002 by Christine and John Melsom as a local action group in Hampshire.  They were incensed about the proposed huge increase in Council Tax bills for the year 2003/04.  This was the year when the average increase was 12.9%!  Although the Government knew that this was going to happen, they did absolutely nothing to prevent it.  Instead, they blamed the local councils!
Following the first public meeting in March 2003, this website was set up and the number of supporters from all over the country grew rapidly.  A national petition was launched that called for the fair distribution of Government Grants to all Local Authorities and the replacement of Council Tax with a system based on ability to pay.
In January 2004 a march and rally was held in London.  Thousands of people attended to support this worthwhile cause.  The nationwide petition with over 100,000 signatures was handed in to No. 10 Downing Street.  A rally followed in Trafalgar Square.  Speeches were made by both Isitfair members and other like minded organisations.
To see photos of our day please click on the following link:

Council Tax Protest

and search for "Council Tax Protest"

Organisation

Christine Melsom on duty

Isitfair is a 'grassroots' campaign run on a voluntary basis by like-minded people across the nation.  Its main spokesperson is Christine Melsom.  The campaign survives on voluntary donations of both time and money.  Everything that we do or produce is entirely due to our own work and effort.  Isitfair is independent and does not belong to, nor is it part of any other organisation, despite one claim to the contrary.  Most importantly, we are non party political.  We have no allegiance to any political party.

Support

Isitfair does not have a membership list nor does it have any membership fee.  What is does have is supporters - both individuals and other like minded groups that are spread all over the country.  We do not dictate how supporters run their own campaigns or protests, and will always try to help as best we can when asked.  Supporters come from all walks of life because Council Tax cuts across the whole of society.

Campaign Aims

The aims of the campaign are twofold:

  1. The fair distribution of Government Grants to all Local Authorities
  2. Replace the present Council Tax system with one that is based on ability to pay (from disposable income)

These two aims are perfectly achievable but both require strong political will which, sadly, is lacking.  The main problem is that the present system has been so overloaded that politicians fear the consequences of reform.  The various reviews that were carried out between April 2003 and March 2007 produced no real solutions (apart from more taxes) and were shelved by Gordon Brown.

Political Engagement

Isitfair has met with all the main political parties to put forward its views on reforming the present system.  It also appeared before the ODPM Select Committee to give evidence when they were reviewing local government revenue in May 2004.  We maintain regular contact with all parties and continue to press them to bring about change.

Media

Isitfair is regularly quoted in both national and local newspapers.  We have been on several television programmes (including one in Germany) and on radio debates.  On a regular basis we issue press releases.  We are often asked to attend other groups' meetings to give speeches.

What we are not

The most common mis-perception is that Isitfair is a 'pensioner only' campaign.  This is understandable because the pensioner group of people were the first to feel the impact of the rampant rises in Council Tax bills over the last 10 years.  These were the people who first protested and continue to do so today.
However, anyone can support the campaign and take individual or group action as they see fit.  With Council Tax being so high now, working families and individuals are also feeling the effect of ever increasing bills.
We do not get involved in 'ya boo politics' in order just to try and grab a headline in the media.  We put forward serious proposals for reform and engage with the decision makers.
We do not rely on business or affluent and influential donors for support.  All donations we receive are made on a purely voluntary basis.  You won't find us sending out 'begging letters' for your money.
We do not operate from offices in any towns or cities.  Everyone who works for the campaign does so using their own resources.
Finally, we may not be the biggest or best campaign group in existence, but we are honest and sincere.

Further Information

Isitfair Leaflet

A leaflet about Isitfair and its purpose. Includes information about getting involved with the campaign. Download here...

Isitfair Handbook

This handbook contains lots of information about Isitfair, its campaign aims and details about how you can get involved.
Download A5 pdf version
Printing Instructions for A5 pdf
Download A4 Word version
Download handbook insert


 

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