In the third part of the Echo‘s coverage of General Election 2017, the four candidates for Walthamstow make their pitch to voters
Dear Walthamstow voters
Walthamstow’s my passion. I’m determined to fight so everyone here gets the opportunity to achieve their potential. That’s your choice at this election – someone who’ll fight for everyone in Walthamstow to succeed, or someone who’ll be another stooge for Theresa May.
If she is re-elected as prime minister, May will do nothing to help our community. Her plans for a ‘hard Brexit’ would leave us poorer. They’d close the door to investment, jobs and talent, when we should be co-operating with our European neighbours, staying in the single market and protecting the rights of EU citizens. I voted against the Article 50 legislation because Britain needs co-operation with our neighbours, not conflict.
This election is not just about Brexit. Instead of helping Britain face the modern world, May would rather focus on grammar schools and bringing back fox hunting. I’ll fight for what’s important – our houses, hospitals, schools and colleges, the police on our streets. I’ll work with local businesses so we can make Walthamstow the best place to live and work in the country. Only Labour will support these ambitions for our area and put the work in to making them a reality.
My track record as an MP shows I put Walthamstow first – and I know how to make change happen. However hard times get, I will never stop working for our community and our country. So I ask for your vote. Send a message that the people of Walthamstow want a different future.
Labour and Co-operative Party
Dear Walthamstow voters
Having grown up in Walthamstow, I share many local concerns; on housing, air quality, cuts to local services, and education. I see how this manifest as anger and frustration – towards the council, towards immigration and towards well-meaning schemes like Mini Holland.
I have personal childhood experience of social housing, and the importance of local services to low-income families. Now a private renter with a young family, I’m conscious of the impact on people in the area; renters forced to move due to ever-increasing rents, or landlords selling buy-to-let properties. Social housing tenants are being moved on because of the lack of affordable local accommodation, often forced well beyond Waltham Forest and away from local ties. Accusations of social cleansing and gentrification are getting more common.
Although I share some common policies with other candidates on the NHS, the EU, and education, there are also fundamental differences; for example, Greens put the environment first.
Whoever wins in Walthamstow, a Green vote in 2017 is not a wasted one. Our growing support will send out a clear message about the future you want. Just as UKIP pushed the Conservatives and Labour to talk about immigration and the EU, a Green vote can encourage conversation about climate change and ideas like ‘basic incomes’. We are the only party that publicly states our vision of the future, not just environmentally, but economically and socially. Our bold long-term thinking is much needed in a political world dominated by short-term expediency.
Dear Walthamstow voters
Walthamstow is my home, and I love it. I believe in a liberal society where everyone has opportunities and where diverse and creative places like Walthamstow can thrive.
I voted to remain in Europe along with 66.5percent of Walthamstow’s residents. Leaving the EU is already harming our economy, our unity, and the cost is too high. I will stand up and oppose Brexit. Labour voted with UKIP and the Tories to start Brexit with absolutely no challenge – except for the challenge from the Lib Dems. We should not tolerate an opposition that is incapable of opposing. The residents of Walthamstow deserve an MP from a unified party who can get things done.
I am not a career politician and having worked in the NHS, I will fight for it. The Liberal Democrats are the only party with an honest plan to invest £28million in Walthamstow NHS services.
I promise a review on Mini Holland in Walthamstow to get the balance right, and I will also demand more affordable housing. A health educator by training, I am furious about the further £4.3million Tory education cuts planned for Walthamstow. The Liberal Democrats more than double Labour’s education pledge – we pledge a fully costed £7billion because we believe that education is the bedrock of a fair society.
All of this makes me proud to stand as a Liberal Democrat. If you are tired of the same disappointments, vote Liberal Democrat on 8th June. I will serve the residents of Walthamstow with everything I have.
Liberal Democrat Party
Also standing in Walthamstow is Molly Samuel, the Conservative Party’s parliamentary candidate. Unfortunately she did not send her election pitch to the Echo.
The deadline to register to vote in the 2017 General Election is Monday 22nd May at 11.59pm: