I have lived in Horsham with my family for almost 20 years and my two children attended Millais, Tanbridge and Collyers schools. I am a solicitor working locally and I also volunteer each week at the Citizens Advice Bureau. I am committed to social justice and to protecting the environment. I have signed up to the South East Climate Alliance Pledge Campaign and if elected will work with other members of West Sussex County Council Labour Group to put these into effect in West Sussex.
Not only has local government been subjected to austerity funding cuts since 2010, but WSCC’s financial mismanagement, led by the Tories, has exacerbated the situation in West Sussex. WSCC services for children (for which the council has narrowly avoided being put in special measures) the elderly and disabled and others in need, as well as the provision of public services, are under threat. Budgets for schools and social services will be next. These cuts will affect many of us.
The council has a portfolio of surplus assets including a large brownfield site on land adjacent to Tesco’s in Broadbridge Heath where it has recently announced it is planning to build retail units. These retail units will compete with existing outlets nearby and in Horsham town centre. Horsham Labour Party believes there was insufficient consultation with local residents about these plans and so we set up a survey to find out your views. You can access our survey here and we published a press release with the survey results. Most of those who completed the survey do not agree with the council’s plans. Only Labour and an independent councillor objected to this use of the land.
Many of us are worried about the actions of this Council, not only due to its poor decision making but also its failure to put the interests of residents first. They are living in the past. We need more Labour councillors as it is this group that is most consistently scrutinising these cuts and whether they are essential for the best use of council funds and the running of our services.
It is time to redress the balance and if you want things to change and are thinking about voting Labour, now is the time to do it.