Chair of the Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party
This week I have sent out a message to Ward Secretaries in Brighton Hove and District saying that I intend to stand for Chair of the District Party Executive Committee.
Download my statement here or read it below.
I am standing to be the Chair of Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party (BHDLP).
Hopefully this short letter will help explain why and introduce me to you.
Currently I am a part-time researcher and student of International Law at the University of Sussex. I also chair an international organisation that supports people to get active in the United Nations.
Born in Brighton, I grew up in Sussex and now live in East Brighton. I was educated at a local comprehensive and went on to study Conflict Resolution. After leaving college I joined the Youth Service in Lewes and Peacehaven, where I also got involved in Unison. I joined the Co-operative Party and Labour Party in 2005 and have been active in Bradford, Brussels, Lewes and now BHDLP.
I have sat on the board and chaired organisations including the British Youth Council and the Woodcraft Folk. Over the last 12 years I have advised governments and worked in places as diverse as Sri Lanka, Kosovo, Mexico and Germany, and sat on advisory panels for the EU, Council of Europe and the UN. I stood twice for local council and, this summer, supported Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership campaign. I believe we must now ensure that Labour remains united and the Party grows our appeal in all directions.
I am a member of Unite and the GMB and have supported my local Trades Councils. I am a member of LGBT Labour, Labour Campaign for International Development, Labour Movement for Europe, CND, and a number of other political and campaigning organisations on the left. I am also a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts.
In 2015 with the support of LGBT Labour I was Labour’s parliamentary candidate in Lewes. As well as fighting Lewes hard, I spent a lot of time in Kemptown supporting Nancy Platts, helping with emails, leading teams of volunteers and mobilising activists. When possible I also campaigned across the city.
My vision for the next few years:
Like many of us I was bitterly disappointed that we didn’t achieve a Labour government, but our gains on the City Council and in Hove are a testament to everyone’s hard work. Now I believe that we must focus on the following areas:
At Meetings: We need a firm but fair approach to ensure that our meetings are orderly and democratic, that everyone’s voice is heard respectfully, and that we reach out to all our members, new and old.
With the Public: I want to continue the work started by Nancy as Chair and Jeremy as Leader – supporting the BHDLP executive to position ourselves as the anti-austerity party and major campaigning force locally. Austerity is a political choice, not an economic necessity, and we must stand with the public in fighting back against the Tories’ regressive policies.
Supporting our Council: I applaud our councillors for speaking out against Tory cuts while managing our council in difficult circumstances. Locally Labour must work with local unions to gather the evidence to prove that outsourcing and privatisation do not save money, and develop alternative solutions, not just lofty worded motions, that our councillors can support and take forward.
Creating a positive message: Far more than just an anti-cuts party, we must ensure we are seen as pro growth, jobs and homes. We must be a party of education, fairness, internationalism and Europe.
We can only achieve our aims with a Labour Government and a Labour Council. My aim is to ensure we keep building in Brighton, Hove and District to help form the next government in 2020 and get a majority Labour Council in 2019. I hope to see you on 16th January 2016 at City College, 10:30am – and will ask for your vote then. Please contact me beforehand if you have any questions or issues.