David Newman published Phélim Mac Cafferty in Select our European candidates 2019-03-25 16:01:45 +0000
We have never lived in such uncertain times.
Our region's countryside is under siege from fracking and roadbuilding companies- handed carte blanche by a Tory government obsessed with growth at all costs. The air in many of our cities is unfit to breathe. Many in the region wait longer than a week to see their GP while our precious National Health Service faces backdoor privatisation. Our region is in the grip of a housing crisis with buying too often out of reach and up to 80% of people’s income spent on rent. Tory cuts have deprived some of our most vulnerable people of the care they deserve. And, of course, we have at absolute most 11 years to deal with the climate crisis.
While Brexit may yet derail much of the social and environmental progress that Europe has secured, we can once again change the course of our region’s history and have the ambition for a brighter future.
Since 1999 the Green MEP for our region has been working hard for a fairer region and sustainable environment. They’ve shared a vision of a truly sustainable transport network, campaigned for our NHS and fought for our planet. And their replacement must be someone who has the dogged persistence to get things done. I have direct experience of the work of Green MEPs working as the Sussex regional liaison officer for Keith Taylor MEP. I have a deep understanding of the Parliament and an MEP’s work in the constituency. I believe I have strong political understanding and am empathetic and dependable which mean I can continue the powerful contribution of a south east Green MEP.
That experience is matched by 13 years’ front line experience in Brighton and Hove where I’ve worked in helping Councillors, Caroline Lucas and MEPs get elected. I’ve been elected Councillor for Brunswick and Adelaide in 2011 and in 2015 and repeatedly re-elected Convenor of the Green Group 2015-19. I’ve been directly involved in our council working on introducing a Living Wage and giving planning consent for the first council houses built in the city in a generation. I’ve been at the centre of phasing out single use plastics and calling for climate change mitigation with £1/2M investment. I’ve addressed climate strikers and spoken out against hate crimes. As Universal Credit continues to bite, I’ve campaigned for fairer council tax debt collection.
I'm in a strong place to bring the relevance of the European Union back to the south east. I'll bring the Green Party call for the necessary reform of Europe back to the Parliament too. We cannot go back to how things were and must be clear that Greens will work tirelessly to do two things: fight the climate crisis and ensure that Europe is on the side of the most marginalised.
This election must demonstrate how Green politics isn’t a lifestyle option but necessary for the future wellbeing, if not the survival itself, of our region’s environment and people.Send question
Across Europe the Greens are seen by many as the only serious party with the track record to tackle the issues facing the EU by focussing on sustainability, equality and liberty. The next election will see the Green Party across Europe increasing its representation whilst other major parties give in pulls to the left and to the right as the legitimacy of neo-liberal centrist parties dissolves.
I have a background in grass roots campaigning as well as local government. If we are to be successful we need strong innovative campaigns which will build community cohesion whilst demonstrating a clear vision for Europe and our region. I am a confident public speaker with experience in holding media attention and delivering a coherent message.
- City Councillor for St. Mary’s Ward Oxford 2008-2012
- Deputy Leader of the Green Group, Oxford City 2012
- Lead Campaigner Jericho Boatyard Campaign 2005-6
- Supporter Radley Lakes Campaign 2005
- Supporter Warneford Meadow Campaign 2005
- Stop the War Student Activist Oxford Brookes 2003
- Environmental Affairs Officer Auckland University Students Association 1994
In New Zealand I was involved in Student politics, campaigning for the environment and against student tuition fees. Through this I had my first introduction to the New Zealand Green Party and some of its leading lights such as Nándor Tánczos & Jeanette Fitzsimons (who was my environmental studies tutor). In Australia I took part in protests to protect Aboriginal land from damaging development whilst studying permaculture with Bill Mollison. In Oxford I campaigned to save Jericho Boatyard, occupying the yard and fighting eviction orders through the courts. We galvanised ther support of the local community, the city and the council. I organised fundraisers and public awareness events. I stood as a Green in 2006. In 2007 I married my wife Anna. I was elected in 2008 to the City Council as served as Councillor for St Mary’s ward until 2012. Whilst serving, I successfully put a motions asking for detailed assessment of rainwater catchment potential in the city, to make Jericho a conservation area and for the city to support the campaign to ‘End Ecocide’. I sat on numerous committees, including area planning, licencing and scrutiny.
I have immersed myself in understanding both sides of the Brexit debate whilst being firmly in favour of remaining. My time in France, in the Dordogne, has shown me numerous examples of how EU funds are applied to support local community. This is in stark contrast to the UK where the role of the EU is downplayed and derided in the media. I believe the EU is important to prevent conflict within Europe. I am not a fan of the Common Agricultural Policy. I would like the Greens across Europe work together to bring Europe within its ecological limits. The Greens are well positioned to formulate a new direction for Europe which fosters regional diversity, facilitates free movement, regulates commerce and industry to protect the environment and workers rights. The world needs a united Europe, the Green Party can hold it together.Send question
David Newman published Andrew Wainwright in Select our European candidates 2019-03-21 23:22:46 +0000
How do you react when not one but two prime ministers tell you their ideology is necessary because of now-debunked economic theories? My reaction was to stop and think. How can we find hundreds of billions to rescue banks but nothing to address climate change? I gave up my career as a CTO of software companies and went back to university. I learned how Economics can help us build a greener, fairer society and I am determined to do all I can to bring that about.
We are heading towards a social tipping point. More and more of us are alarmed about the coming climate catastrophe and want the world’s governments to do more. Climate records are broken all the time and disasters more and more common. Very soon now, some new climate crisis will strike which will shock everyone. When that happens, the Green Party has to be ready.
We are the only party with policies to address the issues we’re facing. Fee & Dividend, Land Value Tax and Basic Income have the power to transform our society. These policies are needed now and we have to be ready for the social tipping point which will demand their implementation.
Andrew WainwrightSend question
It’s time that people in the UK were offered a positive vision for Europe; a Europe that is a driving force in global efforts to prevent climate change, a Europe that stands up for individuals against the powerful, a Europe that offers protections for employees and consumers, a Europe that works to reduce inequality, a Europe that provides common ground for all its citizens while celebrating difference, a Europe that promotes peace, justice and democracy around the world.
We need to connect all the good things that Europe does, and the better things that a greener Europe would do, with the everyday concerns of voters. This shouldn’t be about the intricacies of Brussels politics, it’s about people who worry about their jobs, making ends meet, the children’s education and the world that they will leave to them. We can’t just blame a hostile media in the UK for negative attitudes towards the EU; the Brussels bureaucracy is often self-absorbed, self-serving and detached from the lives lived by the vast majority of us. We need a Europe that is more democratic, more responsive to the people it serves, less amenable to corporate lobbying and tougher on the continent’s emerging autocrats.
The UK has sat on Europe’s sidelines for forty years, years during which it should have been building alliances with European nations that don’t want to see a federal superstate, mandatory adoption of the Euro, or a European Central Bank that’s far too beholden to the interests of a few large states at the expense of the EU’s smaller countries. A UK with a renewed commitment to Europe should be forging just such relationships and if elected to Brussels I would work to persuade parliamentarians to stop the Brussels machine from trampling the small and the beautiful.
I joined the Green Party in 1988 because I believed these issues were the issues of our times. Thirty years on nothing has happened to change my mind. I’m a former Chair of the Green Party in the South East, I stood for Europe in 2014, I’m currently PPC for Bexhill & Battle in East Sussex, having contested the seat in 2015 and 2017.
Most of my professional life has been spent in journalism. I’ve worked for the BBC and Reuters, reported for Newsweek, NPR, the ABC, CBC, and many others, been a political reporter at Westminster and a foreign correspondent in South East Asia. These days much of my time is spent helping emerging technology companies in Europe, N. America and Asia with their communications.Send question
I’d be honoured to be chosen again for the Green list for the South East. I will be campaigning tirelessly to get more Greens elected to the European Parliament.
I am an immigration barrister. I am British/German dual national who speaks English, German and French fluently. I hold an LLM in International Human Rights Law from Essex University.
For the last 16 years I have represented UK citizens, migrants and refugees. Before that, I worked as Research Assistant to the UN Special Rapporteur on torture - my work included participating in fact finding missions, drawing Governments’ attention to serious human rights violations, and briefing civil society on how to better use UN human rights mechanisms. I was a ‘focal point for sexual orientation and gender identity’ at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, advised on resolutions, and briefed UN experts on LGBT rights. Whilst at the UN I co-founded a small voluntary NGO (International Research Centre on Social Minorities) which continued this work and held pioneering panels e.g. on LGBTQI youth, rainbow families and human rights violations faced by trans & intersex persons.
During my practice as a barrister, I continued to lobby UN bodies on issues such as refugee/migrant rights, statelessness, the right to health, child rights, stigmatisation and the rights of LGBTQI persons including in recent sessions.
I have always been interested in European politics ever since joining the German Green Party aged 16. In Germany, I was in charge of the Green Network (GNW) which organised political European Green youth camps for young Green activists from all over Europe. I have always felt extremely close to Green Party political objectives and joined my local Green Party in North Surrey in October 2018.
As a barrister, I regularly advise clients on EU law. I had the honour to contribute to Jean Lambert’s publication ‘Migration & Brexit’ and I was called to address the European Parliament on EU citizens’ rights after Brexit in 2017 & 2018 as an expert. I am often called upon by the media, including within Europe, to comment on topical cases/issues & legal developments.
I believe my expertise would assist the Green Party in the EP in important areas such as:
- the ongoing fight for the retention of European citizenship for UK nationals & EU/UK citizen rights (if Brexit proceeds)
- combatting erosion of political, civil, economic, social and cultural rights
- the urgent need to continue to advocate responsibility sharing to humanely deal with refugee movements
- the fight for gender and LGBT equality (including meaningful measures against domestic violence)
I passionately believe in the need for urgent measures to combat climate change, promote sustainable agriculture & environmental protection (fighting animal cruelty, fur farming, deforestation, fracking, single use plastics & the use of harmful pesticides).
Having seen the unprecedented damage that Brexit, negative propaganda and widespread ignorance of the EU has wrought on both EU & UK citizens, I believe stronger than ever in
- our responsibility to proactively support the European project
- bringing it and its actual purposes closer to the British public
- strenuously working towards representing the EU & EP as a voice for democratic representation and as a peace project.
Twitter: @ChambersofJDSend question
I wept, as I walked the dog around the park, every day for 3 days. My husband-to-be (a climate scientist) was wooing me with tales of climate change. Hard hitting stuff. And now, the fading away of nature becomes more evident with each bird that disappears from our garden.
So, I joined the Green Party, the only party unequivocally putting the environment at the heart of policy. I have learned so much! I did not know about the money system, (97% of our money created out of thin air for the private profiteering). Nor how a Citizen’s Income is essential to securing a happy and comfortable future for all.
In 2012, I won and administered an £88,000 government grant for Sustainable Wallingford, piloting the Green Deal, and five of us trained as domestic energy assessors. This led me to becoming a Green Deal Advisor and setting up Ecomorph.
The Coalition Government sabotaged the Green Deal. Householders should have been able to insulate their homes, put in renewables, and improve their heating at no up-front cost; repaying at the rate at which they saved money on energy bills.
But greed won out. The government set an interest rate on the debt at 7%. The scheme bristled with a massive pyramid of auditors, financiers and certification bodies; a minimum of 9 bodies between the householder and the installer; more than doubling the price of works.
Meanwhile, in 2010, the first wave of excessive house planning came through. I can’t recall if it was Labour or Cons that decided that Oxfordshire would take 50,000 new houses. In 2014, the number was doubled to 100,000. Now, the Expressway with its million homes will add a further 300,000 houses in the County, for investor profit.
We needed a clear message on housing in the Oxfordshire Green Party, We set up a new housing group and thrashed out a housing myth buster. But the relentless fight against a greedy government determined to sell up and destroy our landscape goes on.
Nimby and Proud. If we looked more carefully at our own back yard, we would see the intent to industrialise and urbanise the South East of England is just as malignant as cutting down Amazonian Forest or slicing off mountain-tops (overburden) to get at the minerals beneath.
I run South Oxfordshire Sustainability where I bring together environmentalists from across our local District.
Please vote for me, but also, before the 25th March, go to www.southoxfordshiresustainability.org.uk to object to the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 (it doesn’t matter where you live - this is for the UK and our global environment)!
There is much work to do in Europe. Were we to stay in, I’d seek to remove practices that damage our low-carbon future, like import tariffs on PV panels, and state-aid rules that prevent the nurturing of beneficial businesses. If we leave, I’d work to retain and improve rules beneficial to mitigating climate change and improving the natural world.Send question
The EU has played a significant role in maintaining peace across Europe and the prosperity and economic development of the United Kingdom since we joined in 1973. Economic benefits are not and should not be seen as the panacea of the projects achievements. Other benefits have enriched the lives of millions across the EU and the UK. Freedom of movement, improvements to environmental, Health and Safety protections have impacted and improved citizens lives far beyond simple economic prosperity.
I accept that the EU is not a perfect beast, and as such it is clear that our future relationship will only be successful if we can influence it’s direction from within.
Having campaigned to remain in the EU in 2016 I was struck by the misrepresentation and negative perceptions of the EU amongst the leave voters.
We need to listen to the leave voters and Caroline Lucas’s continued engagement with communities who voted leave in large numbers should become the norm. I firmly believe we also need to be more proactive in our support for and promotion of the achievements of the EU.
I wish to stand as a potential candidate for the 2019 European Elections in order to address this deficit and represent the all people of the South East but also take the opportunity to educate and inform the voters. The EU is far from perfect and if it is to be improved it is vital that we have a positive voice inside the European Parliament. It would be an honour to represent the region and the Green Party. As an MEP I would ensure that the impending climate breakdown is the highest priority for the EU. I have been inspired by the student strikes here in West Berkshire and across the globe.
In April 2015 I joined the Green Party. Since then I have been an active campaigner on environmental issues and those of social justice. I became the Chair of the local Party in 2016 and I am currently PPC for the Newbury constituency.
I have a public profile locally and challenge the council on social and environmental topics. I have written for LeftfootForward and Greenworld as well as appearing on TV and radio representing West Berkshire Green Party. At the party conference in 2017 I was an award wintering inspirational candidate.
As a Trade Unionist I brought the first anti fracking motion to the GMB conference in 2017. I recently forced the local council (West Berkshire) to hold a public debate on May 21st 2019 to declare a climate emergency. This was the first time ever any petition has reached the number of signatures required to force a debate. I have a wide range of life experiences including serving in the military for 20 years. I am not a traditional politician and have found during my campaigning locally I can reach out to parts of the community that are remote from and disconnected from the political landscape.
Climate change and wider environmental destruction threatens our equality and democracy. A Green Campaign for the European Elections must highlight how social justice and environmental sustainability are two sides of the same coin. This vision, combined with sufficient collective action, can and must transform our politics and radically change economics - for a better future and Europe.
I would apply my experience as a Green councillor (since 2010) and as SE Chair (since 2014) to this challenge, continuing Keith Taylor’s leadership of a strong team in Brussels and the region. I believe I have the humility and integrity, commitment and experience to be elected as an effective MEP. I have been a Green Party member since 2005. I currently serve as a Surrey County Councillor and Reigate and Banstead Borough Councillor. I previously served the Green Party nationally (as campaigns coordinator, on conferences committee, reviewing policy) and have stood in general and EU elections.
I have long campaigned for environmental and social justice (including through CND, CPRE, UKWIN and Greenpeace). I have helped start new campaigns (including #NoNewRunways and locally) and served as a Trustee for local charities (furniture reuse and local volunteering). My activism started leading a Friends of the Earth student group helping defeat the Durham bypass. I joined the Green Party after returning from working in Sudan, Vietnam and Bangladesh as a Chartered Engineer and Environmentalist where I experienced climate impacts and corruption first hand. I have had the privilege of leading a small team of green councillors in Surrey where we punch above our weight - securing budget amendments, motions and making a real difference locally.
I have extensive media experience, mostly as a councillor (print media, radio, some TV) and in general and European elections. I have spoken in many public meetings and rallies; including supporting Keith Taylor MEP at events on affordable housing, flooding, oil drilling, airport expansion (e.g. on how we can provide genuinely affordable housing and protect our countryside, against nuclear power, Trident, council cuts and austerity, biofuels and incineration – and on the fairer society and green jobs we must create instead, on hope and green politics and much more), and supported legal challenges.
In addition I have published and presented widely as a core member of Green House across the UK and EU (including at the Green European Foundation COP24 side-event) including on industrial strategy for a post-growth Britain on how dealing with climate change will re-localise the UK and EU economy and what Facing up to Climate Reality looks like (forthcoming).
We need a reformed and far Greener Europe. We must inspire and energise the UK in the face of tired politics, declaring a Climate Emergency, setting clear green lines to stop airport expansion and oil extraction, and realising sufficient alternatives with integrity, honesty and clarity. I would welcome the opportunity to serve as your Green MEP. Together we must Take Back Hope.Send question
I will listen to your point of view.
I endeavour to study academic articles before making a decision.
I aim to give the voters in the next century more choices than we have today.
I am to manage global temperatures in the best way possible for everyone. I never want to see London under water.
To this end I suggest that people reduce unnecessary travel to minimize CO2 emissions. If you “need” a holiday in the sun: I would point out that within Europe the order of CO2 emissions is bicycle; rail; buses; aeroplane; car. So take a train if you can.
- Trains produce approximately a quarter less CO2 than busses per passenger kilometre travelled.
- Buses are 15 times better than cars.
- Even planes are more efficient than cars.
Leave the car at home. Cars also cause over 42% of violent deaths in the UK; 1,710 people in 2017.
I want expansion of off road cycle tracks and separate foot paths to reduce the number of cyclist and pedestrian deaths: 24 & 26 deaths per billion passenger kilometres travelled.
Buses should be a public service, not commercial. I will campaign to make busses free. This is to make them even more competitive compared with cars. I thoroughly believe that none of us can afford not to use them. I plan to connect all housing estates and villages with both the local conveniences, and transportation hubs such as coach and railway stations.
Japan has aimed to increase public service rather than increase GDP for well over 10 years. Their train service is second to none, even if it is overcrowded on some journeys. Similarly, I intend to set goals to increase punctuality and service rather than profitability. With a goal to make trains more punctual and journeys shorter to make journeys: faster, cheaper and more reliable by train. To enforce these goals the trains would ideally be nationalized again.
I plan to oppose HS2 and the Oxford Cambridge express way advocating the extension of cycle tracks and rail links instead.
We must ween our society off crude oil as soon as possible, because we expect crude oil to run out in about 55 years. We need to remove it from our lives before its enforced removal. This transition is not optional and it needs to be managed.
There is not enough lithium for everyone to run cars on lithium batteries. So, I intend to fund research into to organic batteries. They will be cleaner to produce and plentiful.
I will oppose all plans for non-renewable energy generators or even plant burning generators. Renewable energy is already cheaper than any other form of power generation it also creates more jobs and it can easily produce 12 times more energy than we currently use. The sun provides in 1.5 hours more energy than humans use in a whole year.
If you commute by car, you can increase your m.p.g. with tips from the AA, RAC or: http://www.drivingefficiencies.com/Send question
I wish to represent the Green Party as a candidate on the SE list for the Euro election. Having been an active member of the party for 39 years I have considerable experience. I have been a candidate in 9 general elections, 3 European Parliament elections and for district, county and unitary council elections more than 30 times. I have a lot of experience of representing the Green Party at hustings and as National Transport Speaker.
In the 1999 Euros, when the Green Party first got MEPs elected, I was number 3 on the SE list and was also chair of GPEx at the time. I took part in several hustings events and was very involved in the campaign. I live in Milton Keynes but have previously lived in Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Brighton.
I have: participated in debates with MPs, ministers and candidates from other parties and public inquiries; written press releases; spoken on national and local TV and radio, conferences and demonstrations; had articles and letters published in national and local newspapers; dealt with NGOs and civil servants. Active on Twitter. Special interests: transport, energy, housing, electoral reform.
In 2001 I suggested that we used Green peer Lord Beaumont’s position to attempt to renationalise Railtrack. I drafted a Bill and Lord Beaumont arranged a debate. I wrote Lord Beaumont's proposing speech for the first ever debate in the UK Parliament initiated by the Green Party.
In the 2015 general election, as candidate in the Buckingham constituency, I organised a food bank to be set up outside Iain Duncan Smith’s house in the constituency to publicise the hardship caused by Tory cuts. This received widespread coverage on social media.
As well as being active in the Green Party I have also been active within many other groups in MK. These have included: Stantonbury and New Bradwell Parish Councils, MK Rail User Group; MK Bus Users Group, MK Forum (civic society), MK21 (Local Agenda 21 for MK), MK Energy Agency board, MK Cycle Users Group, MK Friends of the Earth, Rainbow Housing Cooperative, MK Co-operative Development Agency, MK Against the Cuts and the MK Transport Partnership.
I led the successful campaign to stop aircraft low-flying over Milton Keynes. I have campaigned against climate change, the expansion of Milton Keynes onto the surrounding green fields, austerity cuts, nuclear weapons, rail privatisation and road building. I have been campaigning for the East West Rail Link for over 30 years and more recently against the proposed East West Expressway.
I have taken part in debates with MPs, ministers and candidates from other parties, including John Bercow (Mr Speaker), Mark Lancaster, Iain Stewart, Bill (Lord) Rodgers, Steve Norris, Edwina Currie and Glenda Jackson. As Transport Speaker I have spoken in debates, radio programmes, conferences and demonstrations. I recently spoke at a meeting of Another Europe Is Possible in Milton Keynes about the adverse impact of Brexit on the environment.
I wish to offer my experience and skills to the Euro election campaign.Send question
What is my Green superhero’s power? I am always angry.
I’m angry because too many times we have been encouraged to blame other people for the country’s shortcomings. We are told to look down on people who don’t fit into the soft-focus view that much of Britain has for itself. We have heard of the so-called “Skivers and Strivers”. The seedy corners of our print media will never miss a chance to pitch-in with attacks on a disabled person who relies on benefits to live but is now valued less than the “hard-working family”. It’s a polluting mantra of distraction and division.
Worse still is the insidious and the nativist hissing: “Look over there, it’s that immigrant’s fault. Blame him!” It makes my blood boil. Always has. But then I draw strength from that anger and look to turn negatives into positives. Looking for the positive choice and the positive outcome is core to my Green politics.
As Greens, we seem to see the World a little differently. First, last and always we work for the common good. We see the future in terms of how closer cooperation will bring greater benefits. And that strength of purpose is growing. I am a passionate European citizen, and since the EU Referendum result I have been fighting the for the UK’s corner to Remain in the EU. Given that we are engaged in preparations to elect MEPs I clearly believe that Brexit can still be stopped.
I’m also angry because, for the past three years or more, Brexit has been an almost complete block on any real public discussion over Climate Change. So, although David Attenborough’s comments from COP in Poland briefly broke into the news for a couple of reports, since then there has still been no serious or determined action being taken. Indeed the recent parliamentary debate, attended by only 40 MPs, saw the government’s spokesperson celebrating the UK’s “success” in CO2 emissions, failing to understand the realities and the challenges. Rays of hope have been breaking through – like the bold examples we have seen from Greta Thunberg and the #FridaysForFuture school strike movement, and further the brave and creative civil disobedience of Extinction Rebellion – show that our message is getting through and that we can and will bring about the change we must see for the planet.
I am seeking your nomination as a Green MEP candidate knowing that I follow in the footsteps of giants. You can seen my General Election and professional experience elsewhere – yes, I am someone who has always worked outside politics but I am someone who always worked on my politics – through my career in the news, I am well-informed. As such I aim to be an overnight success that has been 50 years in the making. Click through to visit my website at www.alan4mep.uk – please can get in touch. And follow me on Twitter at @Green4Chilterns.
ALAN BOOTHSend question
Parliamentary candidate GE 2017 and reselected, Chesham & Amersham
Never in the last two decades of UK Green MEPs have we needed to send more Greens to the European Parliament; and yet at this moment of constitutional and climate crisis, we face the isolation of Brexit.
The planet is burning: every day we see more news of extreme weather events – floods and winds and droughts. And the people are beginning to rise up: on the streets with groups such as Extinction Rebellion, and in living rooms thanks to the testimony of David Attenborough. The scientists and the United Nations are clear: we have 12 years left to save the earth. As councils across the country declare a Climate Emergency, the EU Elections in 2019 should be returning a record number of UK MEPs to continue the inspiring work of Jean Lambert, Caroline Lucas, Keith Taylor and Molly Scott Cato. It’s difficult to reconcile the desperate need of our planet for Green voices, with the drawbridge pulling up of Brexit. But maybe, just maybe, a delay will allow for MEP elections, and as a party we have to be prepared.
It would be an incredible opportunity to build on the courageous work of our wonderful MEPs, and I believe I have the skills and experience to do so. On the Isle of Wight, I have stood up for environmental and social equality in two elections to be the Island’s MP and we have grown the vote significantly from 900 to almost 13,000 votes. I have campaigned against fracking, fox hunting and public service cuts, and for peace, refugees, migrants and the LGBTIQA+ community. As a party spokesperson on Education since 2016, I have appeared on national TV, radio and in the press to fight to put on the agenda those issues which other parties ignore: child-centred learning, publicly accountable schools, and prioritising well-being as the way forward for children and adults alike.
On the continent, like many I have been enthused by the spirit and resolve of Greta Thunberg. I was recently in Brussels when young people marched with her through the city and she addressed the politicians, telling them to ‘just listen to the scientists’! I’m also inspired by the civil liberties work of Dutch Green MEP Judith Sargentini and her report to the European Parliament to trigger Article 7 against Viktor Orban’s Hungarian government’s breaches of EU core values. Although the EU is far from perfect, for many years I have been encouraged by the determination of MEPs to speak truth to power and to build a better Europe. I have learnt from the best!
Our challenges of the future - economic disadvantage, political extremism, social inequality and the crisis of climate change – can only be tackled effectively on a global and continental basis. We have no time to waste. The EU is not perfect, but it provides opportunities for beneficial and lasting solutions: I would relish being a part of it as a Green MEP for the South East of England.
Within the European Union, Britain is better able to resolve some of the intractable challenges of our time - to build a secure, prosperous and sustainable future in a world awakening to the harsh reality of climate change.
Britain has a long-standing reputation as a creative hub. My own background, and doctoral research, is in creativity and cognition – the analysis of how we form new ideas. I have lectured in ‘Creativity, Innovation and Invention’ at Imperial College, London working with young scientists to build their skills and confidence in risk-taking, problem-solving and innovation. These are the skills we need to help Britain redefine itself in the wake of Brexit turmoil in order to build a new dynamic relationship with our nearest neighbours.
It is hard to say whether I was brave or foolhardy, but my first encounter with frontline politics was as the Green Party candidate in the 2015 General Election opposing Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt MP. The experience was both delightful and shocking. Delightful - spending time with my fellow progressives, and shocking – to see facts distorted and monetary value placed above social wellbeing.
Energised by this experience I co-founded, and now chair, South West Surrey Compass - a group of progressives comprising Greens, Labour, Liberal Democrats, National Health Action party and Independents. We are part of the movement to change our electoral system from ‘first-past-the-post’ to proportional representation. An interim stage in this process is to build progressive alliances on the ground in which local progressive parties agree not to compete against each other, to avoid splitting the vote. We are demonstrating that this can be a positive and productive process. In 2018 we published our book, A New Way of Doing Politics: working together to challenge a ‘safe’ Tory seat, and this year we are publishing a political newspaper.
In 2017 we set up a new local group - the Guildford and Waverley Green Party. We have over two hundred members and a vibrant and growing team of activists. This year we are fielding 15 candidates in the local elections and are confident that radical change can happen even in traditional blue territory. My experience of standing in Parliamentary, County, Borough and Town elections is that we can change the debates, we can shift opinions, and we are good mediators. Currently, I am a Parish Councillor - and take pride and joy in working at grass-roots level.
Asked recently by a student about freedom of speech – my thought was ‘whose freedom?’. We need our MEPs to advocate for the many moderates and under-represented communities currently drowned out in the rage of Brexit. As your Green MEP, I am committing to listening to all communities, learning from all sources, and seeking audacious solutions to the political, economic, social and environmental stresses that challenge our future well-being.
Dr Susan RylandSend question
I’ve been a Green Party member for 15 years and a City Councillor for eight years, with much of that time in a senior role. My reasons for putting myself forward for Green candidate in the European elections stem from a passion for Europe as a progressive political entity and from my political experience as a Councillor.
I was born in Germany and have lived most of my life in the UK. My politics has been formed by an activist upbringing, an academic background in natural environmental sciences to MSc level, and travel. Between the late 1980s and 2000s I travelled in and learned from most of Europe, Pakistan, the US, Central America and west and southern Africa. I spent two years as a volunteer science teacher in Guinea-Bissau, teaching in Portuguese. I worked for 8 years on Angola towards the end of the proxy cold war and maintain involvement with organisations there working on rural climate change adaptation. I joined the Greens soon after moving to Brighton and Hove and campaigned in the 2005 general election (GE), the 2007 locals, 2010 GE when Caroline won, the 2011 locals and thereafter.
Brighton and Hove elected the first Green Council administration in 2011, to the background of Coalition austerity. It was a difficult time but also a time of notable achievements, possibly driven by a sense of urgency as Greens lack the sense of entitlement to power that other parties have. But we have an unequalled passion for change. So in our city we’ve achieved a lot, even in opposition. As Group Finance Lead I recently led our amendments to Labour’s 2019-20 Council budget, putting almost £13m back into services without creating additional cuts. I’m hugely motivated by what has been achieved by Greens locally and would love to put that experience to use at a European level.
The Green Party position on Europe has been clear and prescient. Greens’ longstanding messaging on the environment resonates widely. We now clearly need to fight for a better European Union that addresses governance concerns that may have contributed to elements of the current populist backlash. But we also need to fight for the European Union itself, as with all its flaws it represents a critical bulwark for progressive environmental and social policies. As a natural scientist I identify particularly closely with EU environmental Directives on water, protected species and habitats, waste and environmental impact assessment. I have seen how effective these regulatory frameworks can be; but also how dependent they are on adequately resourced member state enforcement agencies.
With the mainstream UK parties in tatters over Europe, this is a huge opportunity for Greens to gain more seats in the European Parliament to strengthen the critical Green voice. The profile I have developed locally will help build the Green vote. My tenure as a Councillor ends in May 2019 and after that I will be able to devote all my spare time to campaigning for the elections. I hope you can support me.Send question
David Newman published Leslie Groves Williams in Select our European candidates 2019-03-20 20:08:59 +0000
Our climate emergency will not be resolved by the goodwill of individual governments. We require urgent EU-wide action. We must work together to find solutions to a crisis already causing abnormal weather patterns, human migration and biodiversity loss. The European Union has its limitations and challenges but also a unique potential to solve these truly international problems. The Green Party needs skilled MEPs able to build and lead a more visible movement for change- not just within the EU but also to influence those outside of the EU to join the movement.
As your candidate, I would bring fresh energy and a modern vision for an EU where all people can live in dignity, in peace and within the limits of our planet. I bring a lifetime of commitment to the EU project, and 25 years’ experience working on social and climate justice and in peacekeeping, democratisation and humanitarian sectors across the European region.
I speak fluent French and Spanish and have worked in Portuguese. I have a Degree in European Law and Languages (1st Class), receiving an award for my study on the EU equal pay directive. I have spent ten years supporting the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe. In Europe, I have worked in Austria, the Balkans, France, Ireland, Holland, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Switzerland, Sweden, and the UK. I therefore bring a deep knowledge of issues affecting the European region.
I run a successful consultancy business, working to improve performance and accountability in relation to gender, equalities and human rights in 32 countries across the world. I have significant experience of working with multilateral organisations (EC, UN, OSCE), government (UK and Sweden) as well as international and national NGOs. I would therefore bring a strong understanding of the drivers and mechanics of policy making and organisational change, both from the grassroots and the government perspective.
My experience means I am extremely comfortable and highly skilled in working in a multi-cultural environment. I am an experienced negotiator and facilitator and would use these skills to establish a network of other change agents to ensure that we have a visible platform in which to deliver a coherent, visionary yet practical call for action, based on Green values.
I am a committed Green Party activist- local party leader for 3 years, leading numerous campaigns and events, including as part of the Remain campaign. I am currently a vice chair. I have been a local and parliamentary candidate and am currently the parliamentary candidate for East Worthing and Shoreham. I will be able to stand up to the scrutiny and challenge that being a candidate entails. I am very comfortable with public speaking- from hustings, to local community groups to high level government officials.
I believe that I am well placed to stand as a strong MEP for the Green Party and would put all my experience and passion into this role to ensure that we have a loud, strong and effective Green voice. For our Common Good.Send question
Better is possible, Better is necessary
The word ‘crisis’ is often overused. Not this time. The planet is overheating; the political leaders are failing; the owners of the world’s resources are winning short term profits at the expense of the world and most of its people. This is not new; the shift of wealth and income from the majority to the richest has been underway for 40 years. For 40 years we have known about the impact of carbon burning; we have had Green Parties for 40 years. What is new, of course, is that the consequences are rushing towards us. Anger is rising and, as usual, is being directed towards the others: immigrants, minorities, Moslems, Jews, black people, foreigners, uppity women, etc. Far-right parties are growing, massacres, increasing, Brexit voted for, Trump victorious… None of this is inevitable. We could have a society which makes much better use of our abilities and energy and would allow a decent life for all of us.
This is the context of the UK MEP elections which may or may not take place and in which I would like to be a Green Party candidate.
Waging a powerful campaign:
I have an unfair advantage, which I would like to exploit for the advantage of our party. My brother, Bernie Sanders, has won the attention of very large numbers of British people. I have been identified by the UK media as a person of interest, and they frequently invite me to their programmes. I will have a head start in getting our message before the electorate. We know that our policies are popular but often ignored by the media. I won’t be ignored.
We need to address those elements of policy which are specifically in the province of the European Parliament, but we can ask for votes to allow us to affect UK policy and a strong showing in the European elections will have a major impact on the national scene.
The key message I will be offering is that we can create a new and sustainable energy system, and at the same time create millions of good paying stable jobs. Our slogan can be: Zero carbon, zero poverty. Where we need resources to kickstart the energy investment we can take back some of the wealth, income and taxation which have been redistributed to the famous 1%. This fits well with the gains made by the European Parliament, often with the leadership of our own Green MEPs, making it harder for the rich to evade their taxes. We will oppose the regressive VAT required by the EU. We will argue for the effective use by the European Central Bank and the Bank of England of Green Quantitative Easing, which would support the Health, Social Care and Education we need.
Being an Effective MEP:
I was an Oxfordshire County Councillor and Leader of the Green Group for 8 years. I Hold a JD from Harvard Law School and have worked in private industry, local government, the voluntary sector and academia over 50 years.Send question
The world is changing very quickly, leading not only to unprecedented environmental challenges but also to many people feeling afraid, disenfranchised and angry – fertile ground for populist politics. Whether it’s ‘America First’, a significant vote for the far right in many European countries, or Brexit – we see people torn between the imagined security of popular conservatism – ‘roll back the clock’, ‘build a wall’, ‘pull up the drawbridge’ – or the courage of pushing forward into a new and uncertain world. There has never been a greater need for the voice of radical, hopeful, progressive politics.
The 2019 European elections, if they go ahead, will be dominated by uncertainty and by strong feelings from both progressives and conservatives.
Nevertheless the campaign affords us an opportunity to promote vital and radical Green Party messages of building sustainability and equity into the heart of a new politics, and to highlight the urgent need for transformative policies to keep global warming below 1.5°C.
If Brexit is delayed and British MEPs take their seats, we will have an opportunity to ensure that a post-Brexit UK maintains the greatest possible cohesion with the EU on issues of environmental protection, sustainability and equity. We can also use our influence in the UK to campaign for a People’s Vote and for our continued membership of the EU.
The challenges we face are now global; our solutions must also be global.
I have spent my life working for sustainable development and the protection of our natural world. I’ve lived in Africa and Asia, working on development and conservation projects. I’ve worked on climate change for WWF, on tiger conservation for the Zoological Society of London, and perhaps most pertinently on European wildlife conservation for the European Union. I’ve been a schoolteacher and, a long time ago, a lion keeper at London Zoo.
Through all of this time I’ve been an expert observer and advocate of UK and European political policy, particularly on environment and sustainability issues. But just over two years ago the twin shocks of the Brexit referendum and the US presidential election convinced me to switch from engaged observer to activist, and I joined the Green Party.
In 2017 I stood for the Green Party in the County elections, and I then ran part of the general election campaign to elect Dr Louise Irvine as a ‘progressive alliance’ candidate in South West Surrey. I’m an active member of the Green Party, and last year I was one of the authors of a book (‘A New Way Of Doing Politics’) that set out a new and positive path for progressive politics.
I hope very much to be a candidate for the Green Party in the forthcoming elections; I believe my skills and experience make me a good representative for our Party.Send question
I would like to be selected to represent the South East in the European Parliament elections to be a voice for all young people everywhere. Young people seem to be forgotten about when it comes to politics, which is incredibly frustrating when it is our futures that are being gambled away and dictated for us. We are seen as lazy, disconnected, and uncaring towards politics – this is far from the truth. I have witnessed some of the most intense passion, motivation, drive and love from young people, especially within the Young Greens. From marches, to protests, speeches, and statements... young people truly are the future and I am so excited to see what is in store for the incredible activists we have in the party. It would be incredible to be a support to them, to motivate them and ultimately to represent them and the values we stand for. I am inspired by those around me, including everyone I have met within my time in the party.
I aim to tackle the biggest issue this generation faces – climate change. I am incredibly passionate about reducing carbon emissions from fossil fuels, and instead investing in renewable energy sources such as offshore wind farms, biomass and solar energy. We need to do more to save the planet that we currently live on, not only to make it habitable, but to make it a happy, healthy and safe place for not only us but future generations to come.
I am constantly striving towards a more equal society. We should not only accept, but embrace other cultures and how beautiful the world is. We can resolve conflict through communication and respect & I believe I have the patience to do this.
To have a more equal society, we must tackle a few issues: it is vital that we end gender inequality and tackle some of the challenges women face everyday. From the pay gap, to the sexualisation of women's bodies, I would like to work towards ensuring women are given the same opportunities as men and are able to choose their own path in life. I would like to be an ally to the LGBTQIA+ community and continue to fight for their rights. Everyone deserves to love who they love, and be who they believe themselves to be – and we should all respect that. As a white woman, I understand my privileges in life – and I would like to use this privilege to ensure that we are constantly fighting for the rights of POC. To my POC & LGBTQIA+ friends, I will never stand in front of you in the fight for your right to exist. I will however gladly stand next to, or behind you, and be who you need me to be.
I would like to do my bit to ensure we are making the world a better place, through tackling climate change, promoting youth engagement, and ensuring we live in a fair and equal society.Send question
I’d like to be a candidate with a view to strengthening our ties to the EU, and also to work towards reform of the internal processes that have been the subject of so much criticism during the Brexit debate.
I would also seek to increase engagement with UK voters and the EU parliament for similar reasons. I feel the disconnection between the EU and UK electorate has been at the heart of the whole Brexit ‘adventure’ and we need to see a better and more fulfilling relationship.
Moreover we need to be making it clearer to UK residents the positive aspects of our membership of the EU, not just in financial terms but also as part of a global co-operative society. If we are to remain in the EU in the long term, we need to be building a more consensual and trusting relationship within the UK to show people here that they do benefit from membership. We also need to dispel the myths and encourage positive democratic involvement with the EU parliamentary process.
As a fervent internationalist I want to see a coming together of all countries, not just in the EU, but all nations as part of an international network that looks forward to a more stable planet on economic, environmental and social levels.
Of course as a Green MEP I’d want to work towards greater international co-operation on measures to deal with climate change, reverse our reliance on fossil fuels and achieve a carbon neutral position. I’d also be looking to challenge the received wisdom on continual economic growth and whilst encouraging more sustainable forms of ethical entrepreneurism and small businesses. I’d also look to be an advocate for increased animal and human rights and social justice.
I’d like to work with other progressive parties within the EU parliament to place Europe at the centre of a global unification campaign. With so much political and religious division around the world and increasing levels of political polarisation and extremism, we need a united nations of Europe in both a notional and actual sense.
Huge socio-economic forces such as China, the USA and India are poised to become dominant without a cohesive European model of co-operation and leadership. Other states such as Russia and some of the middle eastern countries are potential sources of disruption that we will need to be wary of for the immediate future.
On a more positive note I’d like to be a part of an EU that encourages dialogue between nations and ensures that there is universal access to important human rights such as health, education and a safe place to live and work.
After the upheavals of Brexit and the associated undercurrents of discontent that seem to be emanating from some other member states, I think we should be moving the EU toward a position of a global exemplar of democratic progressiveness and an arbiter of justice and peace., carving out a pivotal political role for the organisation on the world stage.
Ian MiddletonSend question
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for North Oxfordshire
SE Green Party Webmaster
I was the Campaign Manager for the South East Green Party, working on the campaign for the European elections on 22 May 2014. I am also the Elections Co-ordinator for the Oxfordshire Green Party. I was part of the team that set up this new web site, segreens.com.
I have been a member of the Green Party for over 40 years, after returning to the UK from Kenya, where I had worked in an Appropriate Technology Centre on energy-efficient charcoal cooking stoves, such as the Kenya Ceramic Jiko.
I am convinced that we cannot continue to destroy our children's future by over-exploiting the planet's resources to meet the needs of the rich. This requires both technical and political change.
Here is a film I made at the Film Oxford Video Production course: The Watcher.