Tag Archives: york liberal democrats

Working together to end homelessness and rough sleeping in York

Earlier in April I was pleased to join the national Kerslake Commission on Homelessness and Rough Sleeping alongside representatives from local government, housing, health and homelessness bodies, to examine and learn the lessons from the emergency response which supported people sleeping rough during the Covid-19 pandemic.

At the start of the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020, the Government launched the Everyone In initiative, which sought to ensure that anyone who was sleeping on the streets was immediately provided with safe and secure accommodation.

This involved unprecedented collaboration between government at central, regional and local levels, alongside work between health and local authority housing colleagues to identify health and housing options for clients in real time. This resulted in immediate assessment of their health needs and positive moves for many clients. In many areas this work has continued with a coordinated approach to vaccinations and GP registrations.

Councils across the country are determined to build on the success of the Everyone In initiative, which has demonstrated what can be achieved when all parts of the public and voluntary sector work together to get people sleeping rough off the streets and into safe accommodation.

In joining the commission I will work to share learning from local government, from Liberal Democrat led councils and on York’s approach to tackling homelessness and rough sleeping. In York, intensive and personalised work by City of York Council and partners continues to offer support to rough sleepers and homeless families. The work is underpinned by the Council’s Homelessness Strategy, focusing on prevention, early intervention and local integrated services that step in when things go wrong. Beds are being offered in a wider variety of accommodation, supporting people to stay in their accommodation and to manage often complex needs that contribute to rough sleeping. This has been supported by over £433k funding secured from the Rough Sleeping Initiative as well as the extra capacity offered by James House, York’s newest purpose-built temporary accommodation, which opened last summer.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments

Our achievements in York

Since 2015 and the formation of City of York Council’s Joint Administration, York has continued to develop as a leading city in the UK, receiving much praise and attention along the way.

However, it is important to reflect on what we as Liberal Democrats have achieved for local residents and for the City.

In 2015, in a difficult set of elections for the party nationally, we gained four councillors in York. This was a great achievement and in this article, I outline seven of our major achievements to date, both in administration and in serving our local communities. I also outline our Fair Deal campaign for the future. 

  1. Frontline investment: 

Frontline services have been our number one priority in administration. Despite the massive cuts to the Council’s budget by the Conservative Government, we have launched an ambitious £20 million investment programme in our roads, footpaths and public spaces, as well as ensuring that residents continue to receive their first green garden waste bin at no cost. More recently, in June 2018, we committed a further £1 million investment in waste and recycling, green spaces and support for our local high streets.

  1. Clean Air Zone:

In 2017, York became the first city in the UK to have a fully electric Park & Ride fleet, thanks to a £3.3 million investment. Building on this, City of York Council is now well on its way to delivering the UK’s first Clean Air Zone, thanks to the efforts of Liberal Democrat Councillors. The Clean Air Zone will aim to introduce Ultra Low Emission standards as a minimum requirement for all buses on busy routes.

  1. Community Stadium:

Construction is well underway on the new Community Stadium and Leisure Complex, which will be a great facility for football, rugby league and leisure in York. Steel frames are now in place to construct the leisure site and stadium stands. This achievement builds on our record with leisure and swimming, having saved the Edwardian Yearsley Swimming Pool from closure in 2015.

  1. Local Plan: 

After decades without one, we have submitted a Local Plan for York to the Planning Inspector, avoiding the risk of Government intervention in York’s future. Our Local Plan, if passed by the Government, will deliver the housing we need in the city, whilst protecting York’s unique character.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Welcome back to York and join us campaigning!

As the countdown to party conference continues, I would like to say how pleased I am to be welcoming Spring Conference back to York.

Visit York estimate that the weekend will boost the city’s economy by more than £600,000. And I know that pubs, hotels, B&Bs, guest houses, and restaurants will be reporting soaring demand. Added to the short-term economic boost is the long-term impact that the continued national exposure will bring. It is a showcase for York as a destination for conferences and events. York is a beautiful, well-connected city with the potential to hold many more big political and business conferences.

It is also a chance for our members in York to meet our MPs and peers as well as councillors and campaigners from across the country. And as we all know, a chance for local party members to actually debate and decide national party policy.

In York, our councillors and members have been working hard since we formed a joint administration in May 2015 to run City of York Council.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Progress in York – our report back after 12 months in joint administration

A little over twelve months ago, the Lib Dems in York entered into a joint administration on City of York Council. It wasn’t an easy decision to take, but we knew that having increased our representation by a third despite the disappointing national picture, we had a real opportunity to deliver on our manifesto commitments to the people of York.

I am very grateful to many colleagues in the city, including fellow Executive Members, Councillors, local party activists (and our very new members this week!) for their ongoing work.  A year on, we thought we’d let you know how we’re getting on.

Greenest City in the North

We promised to take steps towards York becoming the Greenest City in the North, including working with residents to reverse the decline in recycling rates and developing a plan to cut the Council’s carbon emissions. Additionally, we committed to reintroduce additional winter Green Bin collections and rule out cuts to the frequency of Grey Bin collections.

This was confirmed just two months after the election, as our Emergency Budget in July last year financed the reintroduction of 2 Winter Green Bin collections and scrapped Labour’s proposal for extra Green Bin charges. Our increased investment has funded a new recycling campaign and we have re-established a Green Jobs Task Group.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Bosnia’s Nasa Stranka visits York

Nasa Stranka in YorkOne of the highlights of this year’s Spring Conference for us as a Local Party, led by our deputy group leader Cllr Ann Reid, was hosting some representatives of our Bosnian sister party, Nasa Stranka.

Nationally links between our two parties are already well-established, with joint working around campaigns, training and promoting women in politics. But for anyone who doesn’t follow Bosnian politics as closely as we do….

Nasa Stranka (‘Our Party’ in Bosnian) was founded in 2008 to offer an alternative to the dominant nationalist parties, and over the past six years has established itself as the leading socially liberal and progressive voice in Bosnian politics. Nasa Stranka is also a shining example of achieving gender equality, with 46% female representation at the local level.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 1 Comment
Advert



Recent Comments

  • David Raw
    Always interesting to get expert opinion about my native bit of West Yorkshire from our friends in South London (Simon McGrath in Merton) and Alex Macfie (I bel...
  • Joe Bourke
    Peter Martin, It has already been explained numerous times what quantitative easing is. The BofE is not lending to the Treasury or to corporates when it buys...
  • Alex Macfie
    David Raw: George Galloway has been mentioned because he is on 6% on the only opinion poll for the by-election. This is double the Lib Dem share. LIke it or not...
  • John Marriott
    You know when you’ve been tangoed!...
  • Rebecca Taylor
    In response to someone here (can't find now, sorry) asking how do we know our vote leans Tory in B&S? We know it in the wards where we have Cllrs (Cleckheat...