Dear Yvette Cooper,
Thank you for asking me what I think we need to do to put Labour back in the driving seat.
For me it is all about engagement with the electorate and building a movement where Labour values are the common sense values of our age.
To do that, we need to demonstrate our ideas in practice. These can be in small and local ways and big national ways. It certainly ought to mean a focus on the regeneration of our economy and of our communities.
Some ideas :- We need to create well paid jobs; jobs paying a Living wage and more. We have a housing crisis, a school place crisis and a NHS crisis. Let’s invest to save. Let’s have a building programme to provide those houses, those schools, those hospitals and clinics. Let’s create jobs and apprenticeships in Construction, in Local Government, in Medicine and Education and Green Technologies.
We need an anti – poverty strategy that all the key players sign up to. This means Employers, the Banks, the Credit Unions, the Energy Companies, Landlords, Local Authorities, Universities, Schools and the NHS. Let’s create jobs in Social Work, Advice and Benefit services, Careers Information and Guidance for young people, Children’s Centres, Community Development, the Voluntary Sector.
We need a foreign policy that supports global development to ensure people are safe and happy at home. This will reduce the numbers having to flee persecution or poverty. We need a global campaign against People Trafficking, Child Exploitation and the Commodification of Women. Let’s create jobs in the Police, Community Organisations, Child Protection Services, and Border Controls. Let’s stop those organised gangs that capitalise on the misery of others and who add to the misery.
We need a policy for youth and votes at 16. The last Labour government implemented Citizenship studies, School Councils, Youth forums, and Youth focus groups. Let’s empower our young people and give them a real stake in our society.
We need an infrastructure of public transport, cycle tracks, buses, rail and roads to meet present day needs. Let’s invest in Green Technologies and energy efficient forms of travel. Let’s get haulage off our roads and on to rail.
And then there are schools. It is a national disgrace that Education in this country has become a political football. Stop the privatisation of schools and hand Education back to the profession with local accountability.
As a local Labour Councillor I will do all I can to help.
All Best Wishes
Cllr. Danielle Stone.