Conference early bird discount runs out soon

Don’t miss out on your chance to register for our new shiny virtual conference at the early bird discounted rate of £30. The deadline is this Thursday and after that you will have to pay more.

Federal Conference Committee were given a demo of the finalised version of the software this week and even the most normal cynical were, I understand, impressed.

Scotland held a one day trial of the Hopin platform last month and, despite a few inevitable teething troubles, it worked well.

The best advice I can give you is to make sure that you play around with it and watch the demos in advance – and read the guidance sent to you by the party. You might need to set up a different browser so that is worth doing in advance, not five minutes before you are due to speak.

It’s a packed agenda, with interviews (rather than keynote speeches) with our new leader, our Scottish and Welsh leaders Willie Rennie and Jane Dodds, policy discussions on, among other things, a federal UK, mental health, the Covid pandemic and Universal Basic Income.

You can read the motions here and, if you think they could be better, you can, with support from 9 others or a local, state, regional party or an SAO such as the Lib Dems Campaign for Racial Equality, submit an amendment. The Federal Conference will even give advice on drafting it until 31st August and they have to be sent in by 1pm on 14th September.

The online conference gives many members the opportunity to get involved. Many people can’t afford to take themselves to the seaside for a week, or they may not be able to get time off work. In a party that prides itself in its internal democracy, that has to be a good thing. The challenge will be how to maintain it in the future.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Op-eds.


  • Adrian Mark Sanders 16th Aug '20 - 10:40am

    I know this is the wrong place to raise this, but I noticed the description ‘universal citizens income’. Why are we calling it that? Universal Credit has been much maligned – wrongly in principle, rightly in practice, but its name is damaged and has a negative association. Our citizens income policy needs to drop the word universal. It would just be the citizens income, or if there’s a need for a prefix, how about unrestricted citizens income. Lets not tie one hand behind our backs when selling this policy. Perhaps the powers that be can answer here, or signpost me to where the important people who decide these things reside. Thanks.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 16th Aug '20 - 12:36pm

    Here’s two comments and an extra.

    one the conference should be free, its online, a missed chance to be truly inclusive.

    Second, I disagree with a bit of the comment here from Adrian. It should not be citizens income. It should be basic income. UBI, gets rid of citizenship, it ought to be for all permanent residents of, say a decade or more standing. Do if needed, ditch the description, universal, but also, ditch the citizens. I prefer to say, keep the universal, basic income, and in that, admit universal credit is rubbish, not because it is universal, because it most certainly isn’t!

    The extra comment, thanks Caron for that info.

  • Adrian & Lorenzo: Labels can obviously be confusing and/or misleading – but, as Caron stated, policy motion F8 clearly refers to ‘Universal Basic Income’. As to the drafting of the actual policy proposed, and its general lack of specific details or likely costings, others with greater expertise than me on such matters will no doubt have plenty of comments and potential amendments.

  • Lord Roger Roberts 16th Aug '20 - 10:48pm

    Could we have an explanation please of whether our registration fees for York count in our favour ?

  • Laurence Cox 19th Aug '20 - 6:56pm

    For anyone, like me, who has been around since before the merger and orginally joined the SDP, be aware that the online registration form doesn’t like leading zeroes in the membership number field. It took several tries with two different browsers, getting the error message “Could not find an existing member matching those details” before I realised what the problem was.

    I hope that when the Party does get its CTO that he or she knocks some heads together over validating data input.

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