Politics needs values. I stand for compassion, public service and equality. Values then need to be converted into action. These are my policy priorities:
Supporting Families in Tough Times. Nothing is more important than investing in children and their families.
These are difficult times to raise children. The Government should help by ensuring affordable childcare for all and by investing in our network of fantastic Sure Start Children’s Centres. The Early Years should be recognised as the most important stage in the whole education system and Early Intervention services should be offered to all families facing acute problems.
Reward for Hard Work. Unemployment destroys lives and communities. The Government must do more to create jobs – and a day’s work deserves proper pay.
Unemployment is corrosive; it undermines self-esteem and family life. Youth unemployment and intergenerational unemployment are particular evils. The Government needs to lead a national investment programme to kickstart the economy. But if there is one thing worse than unemployment, it is in-work poverty. Hard work should be properly rewarded – not subsidised through benefits. We need a Living Wage and affordable childcare for all.
Working Together not Privatising Public Services. I passionately support co-operatives to put customers and employees at the heart of public services.
Public services should be based on public service – not on profiteering and privatisation. We need to reinvigorate the public service ethos by empowering the great people who deliver our services. Private companies should not be running public services for profit. But public sector silos and empires need to be reformed too. I am a proud member of the Co-operative Party and want to see employees trusted to work with customers to improve our public services.