2 May 2014


I am a democratic socialist, which means I believe:
  1. We need an equal society in which everyone has a chance to get on in life and prosper. Youth unemployment is a scandal that requires immediate concerted action by local authorities and national government. The coalition government has done nothing.
  2. We must ensure that pensioners are properly looked after. They have worked and paid taxes all their lives – and they must not be let down now by government cuts. The Tories who run Suffolk county council have shamelessly sold off all the old folks’ homes to profit-making companies who provide the bare minimum service.
  3. The shortage of affordable housing is a scandal. Labour will do nothing to devalue your home if you are an owner – but plenty to stop the scourge of rack-renting. Young people are forced to rent, often by unscrupulous landlords that rip them off shamelessly, and have little hope of buying a home. Action against rip-off landlords is a Labour priority.
  4. There are many services and industries apart from old folks’ homes where public or co-operative ownership is better than private ownership and control: the National Health Service, the Royal Mail, energy, pensions, buses, trains. That doesn’t mean nationalising the corner shop – but we need to move away from fly-by-night spiv companies providing the basics of life, which is what the Tories, the Lib Dems and UKIP stand for. Ipswich Buses, still owned by us, the citizens of our town, is a great example of how that can work.
  5. We have an obligation to take care of the environment in which we live. At the local level that means controlling housing development on the heathlands, improving recycling and supporting public transport and bikes. Ipswich under Labour has a good record on this, but it could be better still. Would you trust the Tories or UKIP to do anything to conserve our quality of life?
  6. We should have no truck with scares about immigration. More than one-tenth of work-creating businesses in the UK are set up by migrants to the country. Nearly all the east Europeans who have come to the UK in the past 10 years are hard-working youngsters who pay their taxes and never sign on. And most of them are really lovely people. Do you really want to kick them out? Who will do your garden or clean your windows? Do you want the Brits kicked out from Spain? Because that’s what you get with leaving the EU.

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