Why Vote Labour in the Local Elections 2022?
In every election we are asked on the doorstep (and increasingly on social media) why local residents should vote Labour in the local elections, what do we stand for? What are our policies?
Here is a brief outline of why you should Vote Labour in the Bromley Local Elections in Orpington on 5th May.
Bromley Wide Policies.
1. Housing, high streets and jobs
Bromley and Orpington need housing. They need decent housing. They need genuinely affordable housing. Bromley Labour will support the building of new homes across the borough, but any development must be appropriate for the area in which they are proposed. Mass high-rise housing (such as those proposed for the Walnuts) are too large in size and scope and will do nothing to contribute to the shortage of genuinely affordable housing for our young people and keyworkers.
We shall also ensure that the scandal of empty properties, many that have been standing empty for years, ends. This will provide some of the much-needed housing in the area.
We shall ensure that housing associations do repairs quickly and properly and hold them to account, a key issue for many who live in some of the most deprived areas of our Borough.
To be honest, our high streets are tired. They have lacked investment from the Council for years. There are too many units that stand empty due to numerous factors such sky-high business rates and poor transport links. The regeneration of our high streets is a national priority for the Labour Party and is a policy that we hope to bring to our local area by providing £1 million in targeted support.
2. Growing up and growing old
We will invest in our young people. We will provide better services to ensure that our young people get the best possible start in life. We will do so by ensuring that your taxpayers’ money will go to helping provide those services instead of frittering it away of so called “investments” outside our borough, which lost over 35 million pounds of YOUR money.
We shall ensure that care for older and vulnerable residents is available. We shall do this by introducing revolutionary multi-generational day centres where both elderly and childcare facilities can be provided.
We wish to increase the provision of dementia friendly bus services to all out high streets and speed up access to high quality mental health care. All of this can be achieved through better use of existing budgets.
We also need to provide better facilities for children with special educational needs and ensure care plans for these children are properly funded.
3. Tackling inequalities and discrimination
We want to identify and tackle prejudice, discrimination and inequality faced by minority groups within our Borough. This prejudice, sadly, does exist and we refuse to bury our heads in the sand and deny or minimize the issues like the current Conservative administration.
We also want to assist those that are suffering from poverty and the effects of the cost-of-living crisis. We want to ensure that all those in need have a working cooker and fridge and that free school meals are extended into the school holidays, reducing the pressure on low-income families. Additionally we want to work more closely with charities and voluntary organisations to provide a route off the streets for rough sleepers.
Bromley Conservatives either don’t understand – or don’t want to understand how tough life is for so many residents. Labour would increase council tax support to 100% for 9000 families entitled to claim it.
4. Greener, cleaner, safer lives
We would take the climate crisis seriously. The Conservative’s net zero pledge is extremely misleading as it excludes all outsourced council activities (such as bin lorries) or other related activities (such as Bromley staff commuting). Labour will commit to net zero across ALL council activities by 2035.
We will also commit to more air monitoring and seek evidence-based solutions to improve air quality for ALL of our residents.
The council is currently only toying with electric car charging points. We will follow the lead of other Labour Councils and vastly increase the availability of these.
We will also offer loans to residents who wish to take responsibility themselves and switch to renewable energy sources.
- More power for residents
Too many of the Council’s decisions are taken behind closed doors and lack true public scrutiny. Labour wants to open up the decision-making processes so they can be done transparently and out in the open. We nearly got that opportunity when the Council started livestreaming meetings, but then hastily stopped doing so last year claiming that the public weren’t interested. What are they so afraid of?
We want to introduce a Bromley Young Mayor to give our young people a voice, and we will give them a budget so that they will be able to undertake projects that are meaningful to them. Above all Labour believes in our young people and we want to show it!
We will also provide a £10k grant to each council ward to spend on their own, locally decided project.
Orpington Specific Policies
1. Action on Littering and Fly-Tipping
There are parts of our Town that are filthy, especially on our estates which the council have left to rack and ruin. Litter is strewn across the streets and parts in parts of our area you never see a street sweeper. We want to ensure our streets are keep clean and tidy regardless of where we live.
Also fly-tipping in on the increase, especially on the boundaries of our rural areas. Rubbish gets dumped illegally ruining our countryside and almost no-one is caught or prosecuted. We want to restore easy collection of bulky items and make it easier for residents to dispose of such waste and more vigorously pursue and prosecute those to currently fly-tip with impunity.
2. Protecting Our Green Belt
Our Green Belt is sacrosanct. It is for the enjoyment of our residents, many of whom have depended on the green lungs of our community during the pandemic for their mental and physical wellbeing. It is not for predatory developers to eye up for (once again) inappropriate development.
We called out the plans by developers to build on the fields in St Mary Cray and we will continue to defend our environment.
3. Promoting Safer Roads
We have numerous roads where motorists drive with excessive speeds, and it only by luck that more serious accidents do not happen on our roads, and yet our Council appear to be ambivalent or even hostile to implementing simple road safety solutions that work.
Labour will fight for better and safer road crossings and traffic calming measures to ensure the safety of pedestrians and cyclists, especially at or near schools to protect our children and young people.
4. Promoting Safer Neighbourhoods Policing
Crime and anti-social behaviour blights many areas of our town. We want to work in partnership with local policing teams, especially our Safer Neighbourhoods Teams, to provide them with the resources they need to engage in proactive and problem-oriented policing which is well known to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. We fully support Labour’s national policy to provide local policing hubs for all communities to promote safer streets.
5. Protecting Vulnerable Residents
Orpington has a high proportion of elderly and vulnerable residents. Many of them have told us that services provided by Bromley Council are both hard to access and insufficient. We want to ensure that all of our vulnerable residents has access to the care and services they need. Not just from Social Services, but also housing and recreation. Our senior citizens deserve more that Bromley are willing to provide and fully support the wider Bromley Labour policies on services and care centres.
As you can see, there are many policies that we in the Labour Party want to bring to the table to make our Borough a better place for everyone. All of these are fully costed and can be achieved with little or no additional burdens to the tax payer.
We commend these policies to the people of Orpington and hope you will support us on Thursday 5th May by giving all of your votes to your Labour Candidates.