3 September 2016
2 September 2016
- New Green leaders pledge to put forward policies which redistribute power and wealth
- Co-leadership is a first in Westminster Politics
- Greens promise ‘big ideas’ in an ‘age of insecurity’.
- Bartley and Lucas to push for one off progressive pact with other parties
- Full speech (please check against delivery) available here: https://www.greenparty.org.uk/news/2016/09/02/jonathan-bartley-and-caroline-lucas-first-speech-to-conference/
The Green Party of England and Wales has elected Jonathan Bartley and Caroline Lucas as its new co-leaders. The pair - who won the overwhelming support of the party’s membership – have today promised policies that enable people to ‘take control’ of their lives.
In their first speech to the Green Party Conference, delivered today at the University of Birmingham, Bartley and Lucas said that their party is uniquely poised to bring forward proposals to tackle the ‘age of insecurity’ plaguing Britain. At the core of their plan is a ‘Green Industrial Strategy’ which, they say, would deliver ‘real security and prosperity’ by creating well paid, low carbon jobs in every part of the country, make Britain a world leader in renewable technologies and give local communities the chance to create their own energy. They also pledged to take forward work on a ‘Basic Income’ which provides everyone with a decent standard of living and helps protect against the ill effects of short term contracts, low pay and job insecurity.
In the speech, they said:
“Imagine a new plan that will meet our obligations to future generations. A plan that will create jobs in every part of the country. Imagine local communities, empowered to take control of their own energy futures. Imagine Britain as a world leader in renewable technology. Our Green Guarantee means a new industrial revolution that will work for everyone.”
Bartley and Lucas’ co-leadership of the Green Party is a first for a Westminster party.
In their speech they reinforced the Green Party’s position following the European Referendum by calling for a second referendum on the terms of exit, and proper parliamentary scrutiny of the process.
Bartley and Lucas also gave a ‘cast iron pledge to put people in control’ by rejuvenating British democracy. At the core of such a proposal is a commitment to a fair voting system for the House of Commons and a pledge for constitutional reform. They also laid out their blueprint for a new political settlement built on progressive alliances to beat the Conservatives at the next election through a form of pact with proportional representation at its core.
“Every vote needs to count. So we are resolute in wanting to explore the potential for progressive alliances with other parties that will deliver fair votes.
“We are the Party of ideas and this is a big one. So we need to have a proper conversation, starting here at conference and continuing in our local parties, in our communities.”
Amelia Womack was announced as Deputy Leader. Amelia was first elected in 2014 and at 31 is the youngest Deputy Leader of any UK political party.
Amelia led strongly in the Greens’ European Referendum campaign and set up Greens for a Better Europe. She has championed social and environmental rights across the UK visiting hundreds of local parties.
"I am thrilled and honoured to be re-elected as Deputy Leader to continue my work for the party. I look forward to working in such a formidable leadership team, and with such strong support from our membership I know that we can take the party forward.”
Next week Bartley and Lucas, as well as Amelia, will make a statement setting out plans for their first weeks as the leadership team. Proposals will include an ‘Equalities Commission’ to ensure the Green Party better represents marginalized communities, and launching a conversation within the party on progressive alliances.