As part of our 2018 Local Election coverage, we have contacted each candidate standing in 16 wards across South West Birmingham, asking them to contribute to this election’s ’500 Words’ series.
Each candidate has been invited to describe themselves and their campaigns in their own words. Their submissions will be published – without editing – in the order that they are received. Should they be longer than 500 words, they will be cropped.
With the formation of new wards across the city, this is an all-out election, with every seat up for grabs. Some wards have one seat and some have two. Learn more about the ward changes and your candidates.
Our latest submission comes from Liberal Democrat candidate for Druids Heath and Monyhull ward, where one seat is being decided: Emily Cox
Birmingham is a vibrant city and home to so many communities, yet it risks becoming a city of grime, crime and traffic congestion if it does not make significant changes. Liberal Democrats believe the people of Birmingham deserve better than successive Labour council leaders who dig their heads into the sand and put ideology before people and vanity schemes before common sense. People deserve basic services such as having their bins emptied, warm safe housing, clean streets and decent public transport. Our manifesto sets out what needs to change in Birmingham City Council after years of chaos and mismanagement.
The Liberal Democrats have set out comprehensive proposals to sort out refuse collections and recycling and to tackle fly tipping and street cleanliness.
There are also radical plans to galvanise communities and improve community safety.
We have also set out ways to restore neighbourhood policing – calling for police community support officers to be given new enhanced roles and for an end to the programme of police station closures.
The Liberal Democrats have listed “14 to Fix” key policy areas setting out how they will make the necessary changes to the City Council.
Among new proposals in the manifesto are:
· Targets for prosecution of fly tippers – they are blighting our streets and stronger action must be taken. We also need to consider how we can make access to bulky collections more efficient for those who want to use it.
· Proposals to revamp the road maintenance contract with Amey – too many of our roads are falling into disrepair while the city centre is an obstacle course of endless road works.
· Proposals for helping those facing homelessness and tackling rogue and exploitative landlords and to help rough sleepers. We need earlier intervention when homelessness is threatened, and we need to take steps to ensure everyone has the chance to live in a safe and secure home.
· Proposals for a Brummie bus ticket to mirror those offered in other parts of the region – why should Brummies subsidise the wider West Midlands every time they buy a day saver or monthly pass? Bus travel is becoming prohibitively expensive for too many.
· Support for child health through measures such as holiday meals clubs and encouraging walking to school. No child should ever be left hungry because their parent cannot afford to feed them for whatever reason.
Our ideas are strong and practical ones to keep the city clean and green, keep services running, and empower local communities.
At present the council has no credible plan to sort out these problems. We do in the Liberal Democrats. We have fresh ideas, the energy to implement them and strong campaigns being run by candidates across the city.
We want a city that is happier, healthier and genuinely proud to call itself this country’s second city.
You can find out more about our plans at: