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Labour Party Annual Conference – Brighton 22-25 September 2013

By cecilewright, Jan 13 2014 04:24PM

Like many party members, I attended this year’sparty conference in Brighton.

I spoke at the fringe event sponsored by ‘Kids Count’- entitled “Police and Crime Commissioners- what role can communities and young people play? Other speakers included, Paddy Tipping Police and Crime Commissioner; Vernon Cocker MP and Dawn Butler, former Labour MP for Brent.

Ed Miliband’s keynote speech to the conference delivered policy announcements in relation to what the next Labour Government would strive to achieve:

• Freezing energy prices until 2017- saving a typical household £1120 and an average business £1800.

• Abolishing the bedroom tax

• Building more houses

• A job guarantee for young people out of work for over a year-paid for by taxation on bankers.

• Extending free childcare for 3& 4 year olds from 15 to 25 hours a week for working parents, paid by a bank levy. Also, guaranteed childcare before and after school for primary school children.

• A cut in business rates for small business in 2015 and 2016 in place of the Government’s plans for tax cuts for the largest companies.

• Requiring companies recruiting skilled workers from outside the European Union to recruit apprentices and fund training in the UK.

• Repeal the NHS privatisation legislation.

• Address zero hours contacts.

There were other key policy areas omitted from the speech such as Education, access to Higher Education and affordable student fees.

The announcements offer a clear message regarding living standards and interests of workers and voters- hence a good platform to campaign on.

As Ed Miliband said: “Britain can do better than this. Are you satisfied with a country where people are working for longer for less, year after year? Are you satisfied with a country divided, losing touch with the things we value the most?

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