The following pledge can be signed by any PPC in the 2016 Election if they care about Justice and support Legal Aid
LEGAL AID PLEDGE For a just and fair society
The most recent You-Gov poll on access to justice found that 84% of people said legal aid and a fair trial were fundamental rights. I agree!
If elected as an MP I pledge that :-
1. I will seek to ensure that the principle of access to justice for all will be upheld and protected
2. I will ensure that the integrity of an independent justice system is maintained and promoted
3. I will not support any further cuts to the legal aid budget in the next Parliament
4. I will support a review of access to justice within the first year of a new parliament to consider the effect of cumulative cuts and changes to legal aid funding.
1 The Vote For Justice campaign was first organised by the LCCSA, for the 2015 election, and backed by Justice Campaigners and Legal Aid Supporters. It is non-Party Political, but campaigners will actively promote candidates of any party who sign (for example in Haringey at the last election, we supported Catherine West who signed the pledge, unseating incumbent Lynne Featherstone who did not)
2 See Here for covering letter inviting PPCs to sign the Justice Pledge.
I was first elected as a Councillor for Hillrise Ward in Islington in 2006, and re-elected in 2010. During my eight year tenure, Arsenal have failed to win a single trophy. These things may be connected.
Now Arsenal stand on the brink of winning the FA cup.
My course of action is clear.
To avoid another four trophy-less years, I will not re-stand.
Tribune article here.
1 In 2006 and 2010 the Conservatives were trounced in Hillrise. This year, they are fielding NO candidates! My work here is done.
2 I always said I would only serve a maximum two terms. I fulfil that promise. In fact, I think all Councillors should serve a maximum two terms. There are two many tired old faces, entrenched in the Town Hall bubble, with seemingly no life or interests outside politics. New candidates with fresh ideas are surely preferable to careerist politicians becoming increasingly dependant on their allowances, and surviving by patronage in servile demonstrations of Party loyalty.
3 I would like to pay tribute to my fellow ward Councillor Lorraine Constantinou, who has been an outstanding, hard-working Councillor.
4 I was elected as a Lib Dem Cllr, but became Islington’s only Independent Councillor after resigning from the Lib Dems over the National Party support for Secret Courts.
I would like to thank everyone who entrusted me with their vote, and particularly those who campaigned, done-knocked and delivered with me in two elections. Also to my former Hillrise colleagues Fiona Dunlop and Julia Williams, current Cllrs Lorraine and Marian and the excellent MP for Islington North, Jeremy Corbyn.
And not forgetting Donna Boffa (RIP)
I also acknowledge the massive support from Council Officers, who of course do all the hard work for which Councillors take credit.
And (yes I know this is worse than an Oscar speech) to my family, who at times I saw less of than I would have liked.
Below:-Hillrise Councillors 2006. I still had hair when I was first elected!