VOTE 2014: The Green Party has never had a councillor in Croydon. Here, their local co-chair SHASHA KHAN offers his party line about why they deserve your vote in tomorrow’s Town Hall elections
If you are reading this article then you already take an interest in social, current and political affairs in Croydon. Regrettably, too many in Croydon don’t keep informed on decisions that affect their lives, but you do. That is why we’re asking you to vote Green tomorrow.
The vast majority of people vote tribally in Croydon, and this “you’d better vote for our lot because the other lot might get in” approach is leaving the long-term success and stability of our borough at risk. As Will Self, the novellist and commentator, said, “There is only a width of an anorexic cigarette paper between the main three parties.” And in Croydon, Labour and the Conservatives just need to position themselves a tiny bit to the left or to the right of their counterparts to secure their core vote.
Croydon needs principled councillors who have a proven track record of standing up for what they believe in: for social justice and the environment.
Our recent flyer distributed in Croham ward caused a stir on Twitter. The main two parties must have the courage to say that if there are cuts to be made, then it should start with councillors’ remuneration. Councillors need to re-engage and connect with voters, and lead by example. That is what Greens would do.
Greens want to see high-quality public services run for people and not for profit. Our principled anti-incinerator campaign highlights what happens if parties fail to resist and reverse the privatisation of our services. The free market will always gravitate towards what is the most profitable.
When it comes to waste disposal, incineration is seen to be the most profitable solution.
Before the last local elections four years ago, I remember vividly listing the social ills that come about from unequal societies. High prison populations, high levels of depression, high levels of alcoholism, high levels of depression and high levels of crime are all associated with societies where the gap between the richest and poorest is the widest. The United States and Portugal top the unequal group, with Britain in third place, among rich countries of the world.
One year later, we had the riots. I hope readers of this article will consider why most economically developed countries don’t have economic riots, whereas Britain and the US do. Then I would ask them to consider why Croydon bore the brunt of the riots and Richmond Upon Thames and Bromley did not. Is it because from socially deprived Broad Green ward you can get on a bus heading south, and within 20 minutes, you could be in an area where millionaires are the norm? This disparity in wealth is not healthy for our borough.
A London Living Wage, which we advocate, is actually not enough. Greens would introduce a 10:1 fair pay policy to tackle this inequality, meaning that no council employee is paid more than 10 times the lowest paid workers – a policy adopted by Green-led Brighton council. We will also encourage council suppliers to implement such a policy. For more information on this, our 70 candidates and our local manifesto please go to: http://croydon.greenparty.org.uk/2014-council-candidates.html
I urge you to make a difference and vote Green in 2014.
Vote for what you believe in.
- Shasha Khan is the co-leader of the Sutton and Croydon Greens, and is a candidate in Croham ward in the local elections
Inside Croydon’s recent coverage of the local elections:
- The party line: UKIP
- The party line: LibDems
- The party line: TUSC
- The party line: Conservatives
- Policy analysis 1: The incinerator
- Policy analysis 2: Hammersfield
- Policy analysis 3: Crime
- ADDISCOMBE: Labour looking vulnerable to Barwell’s push
- Council CEO parrots Tory party line in official press releases
- Conservatives snub hustings as sham candidates exposed
- Council allowances and local politicians’ secret consensus
- The list of candidates for the May 22 local elections
Coming to Croydon
- David Lean Cinema: The Rocket, May 22
- Songs From The Ledge, Spread Eagle Theatre, May 23
- Greek Myths: stories and mask-making, May 27
- The Information Project Crystal Palace debate, May 28
- Howard Marks: Scholar, Smuggler, Prisoner, Scribe, May 29
- David Lean Cinema: Dallas Buyers Club, May 29
- Tales from Ancient Greece, Upper Norwood Library, May 29
- Upper Norwood Library Book Club, May 31
- Stitch Pitch quilting workshop, Upper Norwood Library, June 2
- Croydon Tech City “summit”, June 6
- An Improvised Murder, Spread Eagle Theatre, June 7
- Crystal Palace Transition Town annual meeting, June 11
- Lakes Playground Action Group fun day, June 14
- Elm Tree Cottage garden open day, June 15
- Norwood Society Talk: The Concrete Church, June 19
- Classic Car Show at Purley Rotary Fields, June 22
- Crystal Palace Overground Festival, June 26-29
- Warnings to the Curious, Spread Eagle Theatre, June 27
- South Norwood Allotments open day, June 28
- Fragile, Spread Eagle Theatre, July 24-26
- Elm Tree Cottage garden open day, Aug 10
- Norwood Society Talk: War Memorials, Sep 18
- Norwood Society Talk: From Fire Station to Theatre, Oct 16
- Norwood Society Talk: Lambeth’s Archives, Nov 20
Inside Croydon: Croydon’s only independent news source, based in the heart of the borough: 72,342 average monthly page views (Jan-Mar 2014)
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