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The death of 63-year old Musa Sevimli at a Stoke Newington bus stop in 2019 shook the community. 

How could such a thing happen in a humane, affluent society? Now a report into the death by Professor Michael Preston-Shoot (see the story on page 1) sheds some light on what went wrong. 

It is encouraging to see that the council is heeding the report’s findings and taking steps to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again. But for the report to make a real difference, it would make sense for the Town Hall to use it as an opportunity to foster public learning about vulnerable people in our midst.

Instead it occasioned only a handful of tweets by the mayor, a few lines from the cabinet member for health and an oblique reference in a council meeting. 

Written with a view to learning lessons rather than attributing blame, the analysis nevertheless raises some worrying questions about the council’s adult safeguarding work. 

Given the severity of homelessness and the importance of taking care of all those who make Hackney their home, this issue needs to be more widely discussed by the community as a whole. Would that we were offered greater opportunity by the council to reflect collectively on this tragic episode and to take on board the lessons of this report

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