No public appetite for making policing partisan

Martin regularly speaks to residents on the doorsteps across Norwich and Norfolk
Martin regularly speaks to residents on the doorsteps across Norwich and Norfolk

I am very concerned that turnout will not be much higher than last time and I think much of the blame for this must go to the government who introduced this extra layer of bureaucracy. In my experience on the doorstep, There is simply no public appetite for making policing party-political in this way. Residents want the police force to be accountable, not partisan.

After speaking with many residents about this, most people do not know what this role entails. Even though the Electoral Commission, in its report on the elections, stated that the low turnout was “a concern for anyone who cares about democracy“, the lessons do not seem to have been learnt. Continue reading “No public appetite for making policing partisan”

Tackling flytipping in Norwich

Earlier this week I was at the manifesto launch of the Green Party. I was proud to be able to contribute to the drafting of this document.

Flytipping and waste collection is a major problem in many areas of Norwich - something which Martin has been taking action on
Flytipping and waste collection is a major problem in many areas of Norwich – something which Martin has been taking action on

Helping small businesses and tackling rogue landlords were two of the pledges made by the Green Party in Norwich in its manifesto for this year’s local elections. By offering the use of shops and office space at a greatly subsidised rate, the Greens want to encourage new businesses to start up in the city. Continue reading “Tackling flytipping in Norwich”

Why I want to become Norfolk’s next PCC

As a local councillor in Norwich and the deputy leader of the largest group of Green councillors in the UK, I constantly engage with residents and understand what it means to be accountable to the public. As Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk, I would act as an efficient conduit between local residents and the constabulary, and would seek to involve communities more in decision-making.GPLogoWithStrapGREEN72dpi

I have lived in Norfolk since 1994 and have a good understanding of the issues facing the county. I oppose government austerity and cuts to police services; however, I would work hard within existing budget constraints to protect the services that most directly affect communities. I would work to introduce a “late night levy” for licensed premises to fund the additional policing required in areas such as Prince of Wales Road in Norwich. Continue reading “Why I want to become Norfolk’s next PCC”

Why it was important the Green Party stood at this election

pcc ballot paper
This is roughly what the ballot paper in Norfolk will look like on 5th May

I am only one of seven Green Party Police and Crime Commissioner candidates at the next set of elections in May and I think it is vital that the Green Party did have some presence in these elections, not only because it ensures that Green members/ supporters can vote for a party they believe in, but mainly as it allows the Green Party to promote its progressive vision on issues, such as crime and justice.

If the Green Party were not to have stood across the UK, the party would have been denied any voice in these debates and here in Norfolk (a traditionally very conservative county), the debate would likely focus on quite reactionary policies and proposals. Instead, I am able to promote views about greater transparency in the police force, tackling issues surrounding the late night economy zone, prioritising unreported or under-reported crimes, such as domestic violence and rural thefts, dealing with mental health related issues and a host of other policies. Continue reading “Why it was important the Green Party stood at this election”

Park runs should remain free!

Not really to do with policing, crime or justice, but still an important issue:

My reaction to the decision of some local councils to charge runners in parks…

Martin is a keen runner, pictured on the right after completing the Norwich half marathon
Martin is a keen runner, pictured on the right after completing the Norwich half marathon in November 2015

“I was appalled at the suggestion that local authorities might charge runners for using paths in parks for their runs. This activity is good for public health and should be encouraged by councils, rather than hindered, even though local authorities are struggling financially, given the scale of the spending cuts implemented by the national government. Continue reading “Park runs should remain free!”