Going green

The Green Party is aiming to win its first seat at Waltham Forest Town Hall

Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party

Waltham Forest and Redbridge Green Party

As Green Party councillors we would give a voice to residents, provide fresh ideas for the borough, and hold Labour to account – as our London Assembly members Sian Berry and Caroline Russell have done with Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.

We are caught up in a property-fuelled social crisis which must be urgently addressed. While the council have piloted admirable schemes, opened the new Walthamstow Wetlands nature reserve, and won the bid to be Borough of Culture 2019, a gap has developed between the haves and the have-nots, leaving many long-term residents and young people alike facing an uncertain future.

Waltham Forest, formerly top of the London boroughs’ spending league on youth services, has now slashed these by 67 percent. We’d seek to reverse these cuts and help projects apply for new funding from the Mayor to support young people.

Our promises on housing

  • Continue to oppose developments such as the proposed Walthamstow Town Square plan;
  • Demand a minimum affordable housing target of 65 percent;
  • ‘Affordable’ should mean social rented or London Living Rent, rather than the astronomical 80 percent of the market rate;
  • Give residents a stronger voice in decisions on regeneration schemes and a vote in all such schemes, making this a planning condition;
  • New developments to have lease conditions ensuring buyers purchase homes to live in, rather than investment opportunities;
  • The council to run its own home-building projects and use private companies only as contractors, not developers squeezing profits from our plans.

Our promises on public spaces

  • Public spaces to be open, not run by private developers and security guards;
  • Stop using Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs) to criminalise things like busking, begging and rough sleeping;
  • Remove all anti-homeless infrastructure and street furniture.

Our promises on air quality and transport

  • Demand an Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) for all vehicles is London-wide and brought in before 2020;
  • Trials of traffic reduction schemes, as a better approach to consultation;
  • Workplace Parking Levy, to reduce the number of commuters from outside the borough driving through our streets;
  • Enforce all 20mph speed limits in the borough;
  • Use local transport funding from the Mayor to target the most hostile junctions and streets, using ‘Healthy Streets’ principles.

Our promises on Mini Holland and cycling

  • If congestion continues, use of main roads to be reviewed;
  • Copenhagen crossings to be improved for people with visual impairments, and to be included in children’s road safety education;
  • Address the needs of pedestrians, for example by improving pavements, easier road crossings where needed, and controlling vehicles at the top of Walthamstow High Street.

Our promises on the NHS and Whipps Cross Hospital

  • We would press for redevelopment of Whipps Cross University Hospital with the necessary funding;
  • We would invite local residents’ input concerning the anticipated height of the new hospital buildings and of the height and affordability of the hundreds of new homes planned for the site.

This is the second article in a series focusing on the political parties standing for election to Waltham Forest Council on Thursday 3rd May 2018. For more information and a full list of candidates:

Visit walthamforest.gov.uk/content/local-elections-2018