It was good to meet you all at Top Of Town on Saturday and talk about the Labour Pledges.
After a week where the planet was actually on fire with fires in Siberia, the Amazon and Africa, it was good to see that the Environment was high on people's agendas. It was good to talk about Labour's Green New Deal and Green Industrial Revolution. It's my view that we will only tackle climate crisis when The Government fully commits and takes the lead and local Government and ourselves can be supported and led by their policies. Unless we work this way we will never tackle climate crisis. It's no good local councils committing to be carbon neutral by 2030 if there is not more support form the Government. We can give up plastic or not use our cars but these sacrifices will be in vain if the Government is making deals with the Brazilian Government who are setting fire to the Amazon rainforest that provides 20 per cent of the world's oxygen and keeps carbon in the ground. We will have to make sacrifices in our lives if we are to save the planet for our children and only a committed government will guarantee this. The Green Industrial Revolution will kick start a new green industry making wind turbines, eco friendly trains and cars. It may seem a dream but it's started on our own doorstep with trains being powered by solar panels made by a local co-operative.
The other pledges went down well, especially the commitment to the NHS and to pensioners. I also heard a great deal about worker's contracts and hours been changed by employers and the challenges of zero hours contracts. Also the lack of affordable homes.
With many class sizes above average in Basingstoke our pledge to reduce lower primary class sizes went down well too. We also had some interesting discussions on Brexit respecting our decisions made in 2016 but looking at what is on the table now and how we move forward. The latter will have an effect on our children's future.