2020 Liberal Vision

From Iain Donaldson, a Manchester Liberal Democrat Learn more

Local Elections in May

by Vince Cable on Fri, 15 Feb 2019

Every May, there are local elections in the UK, to elect the councillors that local after our local communities.

In the Liberal Democrats, we’re committed to making sure this year’s local elections produce the biggest gains ever, returning hard-working Liberal Democrat councillors to town halls right across England.

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Sal Speaks!

by Sal Brinton on Fri, 15 Feb 2019

It is less than a month now to Spring Conference in York. I’m sure many of you will by now have booked your trains and your accommodation to join us for all the interest that two days packed full of motions, training, fringes and meeting up with others from across the country. If you haven’t booked yet, you can do so here: libdems.org.uk/spring-conference

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Share your story

by Claire Halliwell on Fri, 15 Feb 2019

We all know the power of a good story.

Storytelling is the oldest way of passing along information, in which facts can be shared but we also know it is also one of the most powerful for sharing our messages.

That’s why we want yours.

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It's not too late. Brexit can still be stopped

by Jo Swinson on Thu, 14 Feb 2019

Tonight in Parliament, the Conservatives kicked the can down the road yet again. 

As the Brexit deadline looms ever larger, Parliament is still gridlocked - and there's no sign of anything changing soon. 

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Winning in Hull

by Mike Ross on Thu, 14 Feb 2019

In Hull last May we confounded expectations and swelled our councillor numbers on the Guildhall benches from 17 to 24 – winning seats off Labour heavy-weights right across our City.

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The Leader - vol 3

by Vince Cable on Wed, 13 Feb 2019

Brexit latest

Westminster is in a strange state of lassitude.  We know there is a massive Brexit storm ahead; but nothing much is happening.  Theresa May’s statement to the Commons yesterday was largely an exercise in repetition, including the ludicrous assertion that we might ‘accidentally’ leave the European Union without a deal.

Corbyn seems comfortable with Brexit, but a Brexit without his fingerprints on it.

In truth, the Government is ‘counting down the clock’ to March 29th in the hope that everyone will jump into line, behind the May deal, when no alternative is in prospect.  Jeremy Corbyn seems comfortable with this outcome: Brexit, but one which doesn’t have his fingerprints on it.

I took advantage of inactivity in Westminster to pay a visit to the Lake District: Tim Farron’s constituency.  He arranged for me to meet the local Chamber of Commerce which turned out in force.  I was prepared to walk carefully on eggshells in a divided community and expected Brexit fatigue.  I needn’t have worried; business was engaged, worried and angry at the Government and urging me to be (even) more militantly Remain!

At the weekend, I was committed to speak at a People’s Vote rally and march at the other end of the country in Winchester.  Any worries about flagging enthusiasm were misplaced –  turn out and commitment exceeded the expectations of even the most optimistic of the organisers.

I think the Westminster bubble may be missing something here.  As Brexit approaches, out in the country people are swinging behind Remain and demands for a referendum. Polls reinforce anecdote.

This time, Lib Dems find themselves on the right side of public opinion.  Having spent the best part of nine years battling against political headwinds we are beginning to feel the wind behind us.

In other news

I am trying to build up a political conversation around subjects other than Brexit.  I managed to obtain a long debate in Westminster Hall about Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and the funding problems it presents for local councils. 

The dilemmas are acute. There is a rapidly rising demand for special teaching provision for conditions like autism and ADHD as well as physical handicaps from parents who, quite rightly, want the best for their children and are entitled in law to demand it.

But the level of government grant funding is growing more slowly than the demand – so councils are being put in the invidious position of rationing SEND provision (which usually means parents having to go to tribunals which are expensive and exhausting) or raiding ordinary school budgets or piling up bigger and bigger deficits. 

There is no end to austerity - just a continuing battle over demand for services and too little money to deliver them

My own local council in Liberal Democrat controlled Richmond faces a financial crisis over SEND provision.  In many ways this issue illustrates the uncomfortable truths behind the Government’s proclaimed ‘end of austerity’.  There is nothing of the kind; just a continuing battle over too much demand for services we all agree are needed and too little money to deliver them.

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The government needs to act on female genital mutilation

by Wera Hobhouse on Tue, 12 Feb 2019

Last week a Private Members' Bill aimed at protecting young girls from female genital mutilation was brought to the Commons.

The bill would clear up a loophole in the law. Currently, female genital mutilation doesn't count as one of the conditions for a temporary care order to be issued. This means it's harder to get at-risk girls away from families looking to mutilate their own children. 

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Two big wins 🙌🎉🎉🎉

by Wera Hobhouse on Mon, 11 Feb 2019

Tomorrow sees two parliamentary bills become law.

Two bills that the Liberal Democrats have been fighting on, to improve the lives of those living in Britain.

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Another Corbyn Brexit Betrayal

by Tom Brake on Mon, 11 Feb 2019

Despite telling Labour conference he would pursue a People's Vote if he could not secure a General Election, Jeremy Corbyn is now offering support for Theresa May's Brexit.

His support is coming at the cost of people’s jobs, our NHS and the environment - he’s just missing in action. We’ve had enough.

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Children's Mental Health Week

by Norman Lamb on Sat, 09 Feb 2019

When the Liberal Democrats were in Government, I had the privilege of being Minister of State for Care and Support at the Department of Health. As Health Minister I worked to ensure that mental health was treated with the same priority as physical health, introducing the first ever access and waiting time standards for mental health. We also secured more money for children and young people’s mental health services.

Almost half of all LGBT+ pupils still face bullying at school for being lesbian or gay or bisexual or transgender. Half have self-harmed.

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Vince Cable announces changes to top team

by Vince Cable on Thu, 07 Feb 2019

I am pleased to announce today our new spokespeople who will speak out on the most important issues we face in Britain today.

While Parliament is consumed by Brexit, we need to remember that people are also affected by a whole host of other challenges.

We will continue to speak up for them as we continue our fight for the public to have a say on the Brexit deal with a People’s Vote.

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Securing a people's vote

by Vince Cable on Wed, 06 Feb 2019

As the battle over Brexit in Parliament reaches its final stages, many people are asking me, “what has happened to the People’s Vote”?

Behind the political manoeuvring and procedural wrangles at Westminster, there is still everything to play for.  The People’s Vote is alive and well.

The next step to securing it is to narrow the options, by removing a massively disruptive ‘no deal’ from the table.

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Eradicating FGM

by Lynne Featherstone on Wed, 06 Feb 2019

Today is International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation

Back in 2013 when I was a DFID minister, together with campaigners like Nimco Ali and Efua Dorkeeno, we kicked off the original government campaign on FGM. We succeeded in securing the biggest ever spending commitment in the world of £35 million to work towards eradicating FGM worldwide. 

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Join the nature of public debate working group!

by Christian Moon on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

We are currently seeking applicants for a new policy working group on the Nature of Public Debate.

The Federal Policy Committee is setting up a new working group to develop new Liberal Democrat Policy on the Nature of Public Debate.

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World Cancer Day

by Liberal Democrats on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

Today is World Cancer Day.

Half of the people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives. 38% of those diagnoses will have been preventable.

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Local Election Action Day

by Elspeth Mccobb on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

Calling Lib Dem Campaigners

by Greg Foster on Fri, 01 Feb 2019

We send out a lot of emails.

One of the groups of people we email are Lib Dem campaigners. They receive resources for local literature, templates and bulk buy deals, local and online campaigns training and support for holding local events.

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LGBT History Month

by Lynne Featherstone on Fri, 01 Feb 2019

By-Election Summary, 1st February

by Greg Foster on Fri, 01 Feb 2019

There was just the one council by-election last night (plus one to the non-partisan City of London Corporation). Charles Lister stood for the Lib Dems in Warlingham ward, Surrey County Council and secured a solid result - closing the gap between us and the Conservatives from 27% to less than 10:

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MPs passed an amendment last night that required Theresa May to go back to the EU and try to renegotiate the backstop.
 
The EU didn't mess around - the vote result came out at 8:41pm, and by 8:47pm they'd said the backstop was there to stay. Here's 11 things that Theresa May could have done to pass the time:

Read this article on www.libdems.org →