I am running to be reselected as a Labour candidate in Willesden Green. I have seen plenty of Councillors in a number of Boroughs taking their status for granted, and I think that works out terribly for those involved. Below is the statement I will be circulating to members.
I have been honoured to serve as a Councillor since 2014, and Cabinet Member for Stronger Communities since November 2016. I would like to thank members for the support, ideas and inspiration you have given me since I was first selected. Now I hope to win your backing again.
Before becoming a member of the cabinet I worked for the mental health charity Rethink Mental Illness, where my job was to campaign against government cuts and for decent support and services for people with mental health problems. I am a socialist and an active GMB member. I now spend my week on council work, representing Willesden Green, and putting in place policies to make the whole of Brent safer.
If you support me I will fight for the following priorities:
• Against government cuts – I will be a political voice against austerity and inequality and I will fight for policies which give the most protection to our diverse community. I will continue to work with trade unions to get a fair deal for local workers.
• Hard work: I will support a campaigning ward party which involves members and uses their talents, and I will continue to take casework on for residents treated unfairly by the council or other services
• Cleaner, greener, safer: I will continue my fight against illegal dumping, irresponsible landlords, drug dealing and anti-social behaviour. I will work with local people for local regeneration with greener public space, modern public buildings, and a vibrant, high quality high street offering.
But what have I actually done?
Since first being elected in 2014 I have worked hard for members and local residents. I have taken on a number of new casework items every week, fought successfully (as promised) to get the Council resurfacing and not just filling potholes. I have improved our relationship with community groups such as the Town Team. I was part of the campaign to save the Queensbury Pub and appeared at planning to help make the case. Later I was successful in winning a new pub protection policy in our planning rules. I campaigned alongside other Councillors to get new paving in Willesden High Road. I have successfully fended off proposed cuts to children’s mental health. I have authored a scrutiny report setting out over 20 recommendations for working better with housing associations.
As a cabinet member, I have won investment to introduce a complete overhaul of CCTV this year, and have allocated money to bring 12 new Police officers under our control in Brent. I have funded work to reduce violence against women and girls. I have put in place a strategy for working with community libraries, a covenant for our work with faith groups, and will be working on new plans around gang violence and community cohesion later in the year.
I need your support more than ever. I hope that working hard has been enough to persuade you. I am a solid campaigner, and I have put in many hours in order to bring change to our community. Please help me to continue this work.