Letter: Exposure not in the public interest

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The Independent Online
Sir: So the Secretary of State for Health is supposed to have been an unmarried teenage mother (Diary, 10 July). It must be doubtful whether that experience makes her any better or worse at her job.

Did she have to care for her baby in some tiny bedsit, with only a meagre level of benefit to live on, without support from either her family or the father of her baby over that short period of unmarried motherhood? The experience of being a single parent varies widely, though it is seldom an easy one.

If first-hand experience were of vital importance, then the Home Secretary should be an old lag, and the Secretary of State for Education would infallibly have all the right answers, having once been a pupil at school.

This appears to be not always the case. Yes, experience is a great asset but even more important are wisdom and compassion. Not all politicians appear to be blessed with these in abundance.

Yours sincerely,

GEOFFREY HOWELL

Team Vicar

Tenbury Wells,

Worcestershire

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