Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Put people ahead of GDP when managing swine flu

The Green Party is calling for Labour to put people ahead of GDP in their plans for managing swine flu.

Joseph Healy, the Green Party's parliamentary candidate for Vauxhall, and the deputy chair of the London Ambulance Service Patients Forum, said:

"In a meeting with the flu planners for London -- which the London Ambulance Service Patients Forum had over two years ago -- we were told that large scale public events would not be closed down because of the economic impact. The chair of the Forum, Malcolm Alexander, and I are due to meet Dr Simon Tanner, the Regional Director of Public Health for London, later today (the 28th of July), when I will be raising more of these issues."

Full press release.

Joseph's blog.

Friday, 24 July 2009

How ethical are Lambeth pensions?

The Greens are campaigning for local authority pension funds to take an ethical stance. At a recent meeting of Lambeth’s Pension Fund Investment Panel, Councillor Rebecca Thackray described the current ethical policy as ‘brief and vague’. Instead, she urged the Panel to be a catalyst for change – by avoiding companies trading in products such as arms or tobacco, or with a poor environmental record. One Panel member responded by claiming that British Aerospace aren’t really an arms manufacturing company! But the Trade Union representative argued that the Panel should see fund managers regularly and receive adequate reports. The financial consultants Mercer were also positive, stating that ethical investments are sounder. The Chair observed that ‘we need to raise our game as a panel’ and Council Officers were asked to give more information on ethical screening in future. Officers also promised to investigate best practice in other local authorities. Lambeth Greens await developments!

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Green Party Stall at the Lambeth County Show: a stallholders view

Hurray! It didn't rain. Always a bonus at outdoor events. Though it was very windy and our table and its contents were blown over, causing us to scurry round frantically scrabbling for leaflets, desperate not to make the Green Party the biggest litterers at the show.

First up it was lovely to meet so many people and chat about the Green Party, green issues and stuff.

Highlights? Sunday afternoon when Jean Lambert - re-elected Green Party MEP for London (another hurray) - joined us so that people who voted Green (and thanks to everyone who did) could meet her.

Prompted by Jean making a wise observation that "Going to some Green Party stalls is taking a real trip down memory lane....that was a great leaflet in 1997 - but do we need it now?" (and to make sure it wasn't us she was talking about!) we had a big clearout. Our info is now hideously up to date.

And just for fun the show organisers decided to pitch us right opposite the Conservative Party stall. (Is Green the new Blue?). And jolly entertaining the Conservatives were too.

Eagerly and at every opportunity there they were, tying Tory party blue balloons (with logo) onto any buggy or pushchair that would have one. This was done, I presume, in an effort to turn unsuspecting pre-school infants trundling past on four wheels into a sort of mini-marketing machine for the Tories...

That's one way to secure the young vote.

And Labour? Oh dear. Nobody was at their stall (well not as I nipped past to the loos anyway).

So all in all it was a great event. And did I mention, it didn't rain!