(25 May 2020) This is an open letter from local spokepeople Mark Gitsham and Sue Wixley to the leader of Wandsworth Council, Cllr Ravi Govindia.
(22 May 2020) The Wandsworth Liberal Democrats are calling for EU citizens to be given the automatic right to stay in the UK, as new official figures show 19,580 EU nationals living in Wandsworth have not been granted permanent Settled Status to remain in the UK.
Pointing to the contribution of EU nationals working in the NHS during the Covid-19 crisis, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Christine Jardine urged the Government to “show its own support for the people’s heroes by extending the right to remain to all EU and foreign nationals, many of whom are fighting for our lives."
The Liberal Democrat Mayoral Candidate, Siobhan Benita, has launched her campaign for the Mayoral elections in May with the slogan: Love London Better.
Born in Merton, to an Anglo-Indian mother and Cornish father, Siobhan epitomises London’s unique diversity.
“My mum was born in India but after her dad tragically died at a very early age, my grandmother brought her and her two siblings to start a new life in London. They arrived with very few possessions but local people rallied round, including the butcher and milkman who used to give my grandmother leftover food. That’s the London that I still love today – kind, open and welcoming.”
Vital public services
Years working in the civil service has given Siobhan vital experience which will enable her to hit the ground running as Mayor. “I worked in all the government departments that the Mayor of London and City Hall work with, including transport, local government and the environment.”
"This is not a political game for me. London is the best city on Earth but it pains me that so many things are not working. Knife crime is out of control; rough sleeping is at its highest level in years; there is toxic air pollution; and commuters are suffering every day due to the fares freeze and Crossrail delay.
A greener, safer, kinder London
Sue Wixley is the Liberal Democrat's local London Assembly candidate for Merton & Wandsworth. "We all love London, but it must be better. From knife crime to toxic air to homelessness, our capital needs bold leadership and a greater sense of urgency. Siobhan Benita has the experience working at the heart of government to create a greener, safer and kinder London."
The Liberal Democrat candidate for Putney, Southfields & Roehampton, Sue Wixley, has been selected by More United members along with 35 candidates from key marginal seats including Luciana Berger, Liberal Democrat candidate for Finchley & Golders Green.
Sue Wixley said: "I am really proud to be endorsed by More United, a cross-party movement making politics less extreme and less tribal. If we want to heal a divided Britain, politicians must work across party lines to come together beyond the election and put the national interest first to move the country forward."
The tactical voting guide released by the pro-Remain group Best For Britain has also recommended voting for the LibDem candidate, Sue Wixley. Based on the most sophisticated polling available, Best For Britain has concluded that Wixley and the LibDems are best placed to stop the Tories from driving the UK out of the EU at any cost.
Putney’s outgoing MP, Tory Justine Greening, will not support the Tory candidate in the election.
“It’s a great advantage to be the only candidate in the field whose party has a clear position on the greatest issue facing the country and a position that is aligned with the very sensible views of the great majority of Putney’s voters,” says Wixley
The Wandsworth Liberal Democrats are raring to go! Find out more about our candidates for Battersea, Putney and Tooting below.
Olly is standing for Parliament because he passionately believes that the Liberal Democrat plan to stop Brexit, tackle the climate emergency, and transform public services and social care is what Tooting needs. He joined the Liberal Democrats in 2016, prompted by his concern about Brexit’s impact on our community, economy and international influence
He lives in Balham. Born to a Polish mother and a British father, he cherishes and understands the benefits that immigration and openness have brought to Tooting and our country, and the threat posed by Brexit. As a tenant, he personally experiences the impact of high rents and the lack of affordable housing.
Wandsworth Liberal Democrats have expressed fierce opposition to Heathrow expansion in their written response to the Heathrow Airport Expansion Consultation, which closed last week.
Mark Gitsham, Sue Wixley and Olly Glover, the prospective Parliamentary Candidates for Battersea, Putney and Tooting, argued in their joint submission to Heathrow that the environmental costs of Heathrow expansion and the negative impacts on local communities will far outweigh any potential economic benefits.
“The Lib Dems have been fiercely opposed to Heathrow expansion for decades and we will continue to speak out against this unworkable folly. It is by no means a done deal,” they said.
In their letter, they explained that their opposition is founded on their determination to confront the grave and growing threat of the climate emergency. “If the Government is serious about meeting the challenges of climate change, it will stop Heathrow expansion. The UK has committed to zero carbon emissions by 2050 – an obligation secured in part by Liberal Democrat cabinet ministers in the coalition government. We know from recent research that an expanded Heathrow Airport, with extra flights and more traffic, will make this emission target almost impossible to achieve.”
The local party has seen a 30% surge in membership since late May when the Liberal Democrats won the European elections in Wandsworth, with 37% (36,012 votes) – more than double the Labour vote (15,487) and four times the Conservative vote (9,395).
Wandsworth Liberal Democrats now have a record number of members (1,340) and the party welcomed 300+ new joiners in the last few months. Nationally, the party’s membership now tops 115,000. Each of the three constituencies in the Wandsworth borough party – Battersea, Putney and Tooting – have benefited from this surge.
Josh Bloom, a new member in Putney said:
"After years of feeling politically homeless, with no party willing to make a stand on what was best for the country, I joined the Lib Dems. They are the only party putting up a credible fight to Brexit and are committed to centrist, progressive policies - principles all other political parties appear to have abandoned."
The Lib Dems’ Prospective Parliamentary Candidate, Sue Wixley said:
“I couldn’t be more excited to welcome our new members. More and more Remainers are becoming Lib Dem voters, supporters and members because they realise that Brexit is simply not viable. Voters in Putney are having sleepless nights about the political chaos led by Boris Johnson in No. 10 and supported by Jeremy Corbyn. Like me, our new members feel that the Liberal Democrats are the only party that represents their hopes and values."
Sue Wixley has lived with her husband in Southfields for more than a decade and stood in the ward for Wandsworth Council elections last year. Sue has been a director of several organisations working on healthcare and social issues and has served on the board of several others. She co-founded and led the South African Campaign Against Landmines, part of the global campaign that was awarded the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize.
Liberal Democrat members in Putney have selected Sue Wixley to be their Prospective Parliamentary Candidate (PPC). Sue, who has lived with her husband in Southfields for more than a decade, was selected at a members’ meeting on Tuesday 2 July that was attended by 90 people.
She is the first woman ever selected by the Liberal Democrats as a candidate in Putney since the party’s founding in 1988.
In her hustings speech, Sue said:
“I’ve been fighting for Liberal Democrat values since I became an anti-apartheid activist as a student in South Africa, where I grew up. After participating in that epic, history-making struggle, I co-founded and led the campaign to ban landmines in South Africa, part of a successful global campaign that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.”
Sue has been a director of several organisations working on healthcare and social issues and has served on the board of several others. She was recently selected as the Lib Dems’ candidate for the 2020 London Assembly campaign with mayoral candidate Siobhan Benita and in 2018 stood in the Southfields ward for Wandsworth Council elections.
Jon Irwin is fighting for a better future for everyone in Furzedown. Jon and the Lib Dems are asking residents to use this election as their chance to demand better from our Conservative-run council and Labour London Mayor.