Elect Respect Lee Jasper Part 1 Lee Jasper decided to stand for Election in the Borough of Croydon North on 3rd November 2012. The Respect Party launch, was held at Crystals Night Spot, South Norwood, November 11th, and was attended by George Galloway, English Frank and Vas Blackwood.
Elect Respect Part 2 Lee Jasper decided to stand for Election in the Borough of Croydon North on 3rd November 2012. The Respect Party launch, was held at Crystals Night Spot, South Norwood, November 11th, and was attended by George Galloway, English Frank, Vas Blackwood.
Lee Jasper decided to stand for Election for the Respect Party in the Borough of Croydon North on 3rd November 2012. He attended the local mosque with George Galloway and supporters for Jumar prayer, to canvass and to assess the level of the muslim support in the area.
standing as I believe I can truly make a difference to the lives of the people
in Croydon North’.
election I am by far the most broadly experienced candidate. I am far from your
average politician, who has no experience of the real world. I have a unique
combination of knowledge at the highest levels of local Government, and at the
very grassroots of local activism.
dedicated my life to challenging discrimination and injustice wherever I have
found it and will use the same tenacity and meet the needs of Croydon North. I have a vision of a Croydon North that fully
engages and delivers for its residents. The mainstream parties continuously
fail to produce and implement successful policies and repeatedly go
back on their promises.
‘As your MP I intend to stand up for the moral centre of politics and to
defend the poor from the ravages of austerity’.
As a candidate who is not from one of the three main parties, I do not
have to pander to a Parliamentary whip. Therefore the concerns of the people of
Croydon North will be my only concern in Parliament.
I have extensive local plans to regenerate Croydon North, as well as
tackle issues from unemployment to the lack of housing, from cycling to fuel
poverty and from crime to education.
There is so much work to be done for Croydon North to reach its full
potential and I hope to get started soon.
Start and Primary Education
confusion around cuts to the Early Intervention Grant has left an air of uncertainty about the future of
Council grants and programme. These cuts will threaten programmes like Sure Start and short breaks for
disabled children. Councils fear that there will be 20% cuts in their early years
and family intervention programmes. In addition to special education needs
provisions of primary school children are also under threat.
Cuts to early years and those for disabled children are likely but we
still have time to reverse these issues. The Government have engaged in a
number of policy you-turns this year already.
If elected I will campaign to ensure that this is another one. We must protect funding and resources for
our young people.
profiling and stop and search fosters complete distrust between BME communities
and the police. There is a lot of work to do to repair this damaged
relationship, but I believe it is wholly possible. I will campaign
against stop and searches driven by racial profiling and performance targets
and organise the fight back against judicial racism both locally and
people can be the perpetrators of crime like any others but they are often also
the victims. How can they feel protected if those tasked with the job are also
seen to be their harassers? I will be calling for the recommendations of
the McPherson to be reinstituted and reinforced.
also seek to introduce a informal complaint resolution procedure where people
who have complaints but who do not want or trust the official complaint
procedure, can sit with police officers to discuss their issues. This will
allow the police to understand the
people of Croydon North whilst also educating the residents on the issues and
challenges faced by police officer.
Challenging the cuts and clearing the deficit
The Governments economic policy is morally
indefensible and wholly illiterate.
‘The tax breaks for millionaires and welfare cuts
for the poorest is but one glaring example of the economic injustice that the
people of Britain are suffering under this Tory-led Government’.
My position is simple - the Government cuts
are unnecessary and they are damaging our society. We need investment in public
services. The deficit can be cleared easily using other means.
If we only collected the estimated £120
billion pound in Corporation Tax owed to the Britain, brought the troops home
from illegal wars in the Middle East, cancelled the Trident Nuclear programme,
and claimed a return from our bank bailout - then we could redress the deficit
and have plenty left over to invest in jobs and services.
Britain currently spends £12 million a day in
Afghanistan and even with the economic downturn we are the 7th
richest country in the world. Despite this we can’t seem to afford to feed our
poorest children. 50% of children in London now live below the poverty line.
Furthermore what many don’t know is that
since the tax payer bailed out the banks they have made substantial returns on
our investment. The Government are aware of this but have allowed the banks to
store up these funds instead of insisting that it be paid back into the public
‘They nationalised the debt and privatised the
Britain seems to find endless money for wars
and weapons but fall short when asked to provide decent pensions, eradicate
fuel poverty, or keep hospitals and libraries open. The decisions of this
Government have proved that they have their priorities all wrong, at the
expense of the majority of middle and low income families like those in Croydon
Local anti-cuts and closure campaigns
As the MP for Croydon North I would enter
Parliament with an explicit anti-cuts agenda. I aim to work with local
campaigns opposing cuts and closures to libraries, police stations andthe
continuing privatisation of the NHS.
‘We can send a clear and unmistakable message to the
Tories and the Lib Dem’s that ‘we reject their false economics that see the
poor made poorer whilst the rich get, get richer’.
In the House of Commons and locally I will
provide yet another strong voice to the growing chorus of economists and
politicians who understand that the austerity is choking the economy, stifling
growth and creating endemic poverty and long term unemployment.
High levels of unemployment are plaguing our
society. The longer people stay out of work the harder it will be to get them
into the job market. The Governments approach is disingenuous and it is their
own actions that have worsened this crisis.
It has already been proven that disadvantaged
groups have disproportionally faced greater job cuts. If elected I will push
for an inquiry into this issue. I wholly agreed with the Fawcett campaigns
legal challenge against the Government when the cuts were announced. I agree
that as a public body the Government should comply with its own equalities
legislation and carry out equality impact assessments on the effects of
Government policy - namely spending cuts.
The new employment figures appear to show a
glowing report of the Government. But these are slightly deceptive. Yes,
technically unemployment has gone down, however it is actually the case that
many have been forced into temporary and part-time work. This has had
devastating effects on the incomes of many families who are struggling to live
on such low incomes. Employers have been allowed to reduce pay and reduce
hours, with no reprimand from the Government. This is something that I intend
to fiercely challenge in Parliament.
I am completely against the Governments work
experience scheme which sees Job Centres’ force individuals to work for private
companies in order to receive their jobseekers allowance. This is ridiculous
and indefensible. If private companies require the labour then they should be
encouraged to hire and pay these individuals a full wage. Additionally the
Government have the power to enforce a living wage and I will be campaigning
for such a wage to implemented locally and nationally.
‘Youth unemployment is a particular concern
of mine. We have over 20% of our young people unemployed. Amongst the BME
community this is as much as 50%’.
We cannot continue to fail our young
people in education and then fail them in the jobs market.
As well as lobbying the Government for
effective solutions I want to establish a local work scheme so that every
public sector contract secured by business in the borough must be required to
take on Apprentice’s or offer small business mentoring, shadowing
opportunities. The council has every right to impose such measures, it simply
requires the will. Every pound spent must be used to lever additional
employment or business start up opportunities for local people. Businesses in
our community must benefit our community.
Education is the gateway to opportunity. Many
of the cuts made by the Government and subsequently Croydon council are
severely damaging the future of our young people. Excessive childcare cost at
nursery level right up to the unfair university fees have blighted the young
and I will robustly challenge this in parliament when I become MP for Croydon
Sure Start and Primary Education
The confusion around cuts to the Early
Intervention Grant has left an air of
uncertainty about the future of Council grants and programmes.
‘These cuts will threaten programmes like Sure Start and short breaks for
Councils fear that there will be 20% cuts in
their early years and family intervention programmes.
Cuts to early years and those for disabled
children are likely but we still have time to reverse these issues. The
Government have engaged in a number of policy you-turns this year already. If
elected I will campaign to ensure that this is another one.
‘We must protect funding and resources for our
Further and Higher Education
The decision of Croydon
Council to cut funding to voluntary groups providing essential support for
children’s learning was potentially unlawful and discriminatory.
If elected I will use the
Equalities Act to legally challenge Croydon Councils decision to cut the £100,000
Education Community Grants Programme to 16 BME supplementary education youth
‘EMA was a lifeline to many
young people including those in Croydon North’.
The Government’s decision
to abolish it was cruel and incomprehensible, placing even more financial
hardship on students and their families. If elected I will fight to have this
The past few years have seen an unprecedented attack on higher
education. The previous New Labour Government opened the floodgates by first
introducing tuition fees with the argument for would ensure that more people
would be given the chance to go to university. In 2004 the argument for top-up
fees was to support an increasing demand. Then despite a pledge by the Lib Dems
to scrap fees all together they sealed the Tories onslaught by tripling tuition
fees, claiming it to be the only way to maintain the higher education system.
There is always another way.
students and their families are asked to pay even more for education, why are
the cuts to education so harsh? Also what legitimate reason does this
government have of turning students away in their thousands as it not only cut
funding but also University places?
I will continue to stand
for a free and fair further and higher education, complete with the living
grants that are essential to study. Other high income nations are
investing in their higher education because they realize that they need an
educated workforce if they are to compete on a global scale. Britain must do
To support the students of
Croydon North to fulfil their full potential I will lead a local campaign to
encourage large and medium sized business to contribute to a bursary education
scheme through local charities to support young people into higher education.
At a time where community facilities are
being cut and closed down its important that we provide space for supplementary
and adult learning, as well as sporting and community events. Croydon Council recently cut £100 from 16 BME
supplementary schools this decision I believe is potentially discriminatory
under the Equalities Act 2010 and if elected I will use my office to legacy
challenge the councils potential discriminatory decision.
‘I envisage a Croydon North in which schools
are community hubs providing breakfast clubs and after school hour youth work
and learning opportunities’.
I will campaign and lobby for resources to
make such local initiatives a reality.
In addition it is
important to ensure that parents are as involved in the education of local
children as possible. Therefore I would ensure that parents receive training to
become school governors and will audit existing school representation.
Croydon North Learning Zone
If elected, I would like to help build a
Croydon North that values lifelong learning, youth development and community
engagement. Therefore I will lead a local effort to a develop a strategic plan
establishing a high profile multi agency and integrated cultural, sporting and
learning environment in Croydon North. I will seek support from the voluntary,
private and statutory public sectors in coming together to provide a dynamic,
creative and powerful agenda for personal development and civic engagement.
This will provide much needed vision and
local leadership providing clear pathways for local people to local
supplementary education, civic, cultural and economic development activities.
Providing increased access to new premises and facilities for a broad range of
local community learning, cultural and sporting activities.
‘I will call on parents to support a local
campaign to persuade local schools, colleges and private sector business to
join Croydon Learning Zone and open up their premises and expertise to the
Croydon North Learning Zone will include
adult learning, youth empowerment workshops, public awareness campaigns on
public health, cultural and sports and a range of other activities that will
help all residents and young people addresses those issues that act as barriers
to personal development or wider civic engagement.
I am the former Policing
Director for London.
‘I am the candidate with the most in depth
experience in reducing crime and improving police community relations’.
Boris Johnson plans to
abolish Croydon Police Consultative Groups removing a vital forum for local
police accountability established by Lord Scarman. This is in effect removing
local accountability of the policing of Croydon North and handing these local
arrangements over to the Mayor.
If elected I will oppose
these dangerous proposals and if abolished I will seek to establish through
consultation a new local Police accountability forum.
‘I will oppose Boris
Johnson plans to further cut police numbers and police stations’.
Croydon North cannot be
simply abandoned in the fight against crime and the cuts to police numbers and
closure of police stations will leave whole communities vulnerable to criminal
I will lead a campaign of
local people taking the fight to save our police service straight to City Hall
and convene local Community Crime Action Groups to discuss how best communities
can respond to the ‘criminal’ withdrawal of much need policing services.
young people at risk of crime in Croydon North
My grass roots experience
of establishing Operation Trident, a community led police partnership that was
designed to tackle gun violence in black communities established in 1998 means
that I have in depth experience in tackling this issue.
‘I have over 15 yrs of
pioneering anti gang and youth violence campaigns under my belt combined with
my 8 years as Policing Director for London’.
I have both the
professional expertise and the authentic credibility needed to lead and develop
work with young people at risk.
I will work hard to
facilitate a constituency wide comprehensive multi agency youth empowerment
programme designed to prevent, divert or rehabilitate those young people who
are at risk of becoming involved in crime or those who wish to turn their lives
I will work hard to improve
the capacity building for Voluntary and community youth diversion projects and
help pull together a consortium of experts providers lead by and delivered by
young people themselves.
I will also work with the
Police to investigate what is causing individuals to turn to crime and working
on treating the root causes of crime.
confiscated criminal assets to give back to the community
Currently the Metropolitan
Police Service and Croydon Police Service confiscate millions of pound annually
from criminals as part of their Confiscated Assets programme including cash and
property. These millions are then taken away from Croydon and given to
the Home Office with little or no record of what’s done with them.
‘I want to close down
serious criminal networks’.
Moreover by seizing illegal
assets such as cars, houses, cash and property we create funding for hard
pressed high crime communities to help them in their effort to reduce crime in
their area. I want to close crack houses and drug dens and open community
resources at no additional cost to the tax payer. We can use this money to
invest and improve the areas where crime has an impact on resident’s lives.
In seeking to tackle of all aspect violence
in Croydon North what is needed is a high profile public campaign educating the
public about the scale cost and terrible consequences of violence. Such a
campaign would begin in schools and colleges raising awareness and warning
about the problems of violence suffered by the entire community focusing on the
most vulnerable, women, children, families and communities.
These initiatives work. Whilst at the Greater
London Authority I supported programmes and witnessed the results of how
effective campaigns could bring down incidences of violence against women in
Women’s support organisations have been
brutally affected by the cuts and I will work with local groups to find sources
of funding and sustainable ways to continue providing their much needed
‘I will also work with existing organizations to
establish a priority of the prosecution of domestic violence and sexual crimes
committed against women and children’.
A public health approach to tackling violence
Decades of international research prove that
all young people respond best to direct public appeals from communities and
victims when dealing with youth violence.
I would launch a campaign for the adoption of
a public health style preventive multi agency approach to tackling violence.
Working in schools, colleges, hospitals, social landlords and other agencies
this successful strategy has been used internationally with proven results in
The police and the community – working together
‘Cooperation, mutual understanding and
respect are the only effective ways for a police force and the community to
I will campaign for local Police to be
properly trained in understanding and respecting the needs of the people of Croydon
North. I will also establish an independent annual citizens crime concern
survey that can be the basis of determining a policing strategy for Croydon
North on an annual basis.
I will establish a no blame Police/Community
mediation scheme that allows for citizens to request a meeting with individual
police officers to discuss complaints where the individual does feel
comfortable in making a formal complaint.
‘Croydon North is the most neglected area of
Many other constituencies have benefitted so
much from regeneration projects, bringing more trade and improving the general
quality of life and services for those living in the area. This is what I want
for Croydon North.
If elected I will work to put Croydon North
on the map by promoting a joint effort in maximizing employment and business
start up opportunities and encouraging funding for regeneration.
Can’t Park Can’t Shop
In times such as these we need radical action
to kick-start the local economy and the biggest barrier to encouraging local
shopping is parking restrictions.
‘I will lead a public campaign with local
businesses on in the area to lift draconian restrictive parking restrictions
that deter many potential customers’.
Attracting and sustaining business
Croydon North needs a plan to attract much needed business
opportunities. I will lead a campaign to establish with business, charitable
and the public sector a Croydon North Business Task Force that works in
consultation with local people and in partnership with experts and others such
as successful local businesswomen Mary Portas and Hilary Devey. I want to
secure investment and redesign London Rd into a major tourist attraction.
‘I will support the idea of the establishment
of Croydon Tech City a local initiative designed to create a new tech business
zone in North Croydon’.
This is exciting growth sector where young
people can thrive creating new start up business in a supportive environment.
Croydon North has many local assets and
spaces which it can use to the benefit of all. For example I will explore a
partnership with Crystal Palace Football Club for the use of their stadium to
hold national and international conferences that will enhance the commercial
visibility of Croydon North and bring much needed business to the area.
Financial support and solutions
In difficult financial times such as this
people need real solutions to their financial issues, particularly when the
Government is offering little or no assistance.
Credit unions – People are worth more than
If elected I will actively encourage and support local people to create
and join credit unions. These organisations are member-owned and provide all
types of financial advice including savings, credit and debt management. By
helping the community take control of their finances credit unions will help
start small business and provide lower rate loans.
They are not for profit so it is all about local people coming together
collectively to manage their money.
No to Wonga week and cash-chequing shops
Trade Unions have
dubbed the week before pay day as ‘Wonga Week’ – when for many the financial
situation for many has become so hard that they are constantly taking out
payday loans with extortionate interest rates. This is added to by the
proliferation of cash chequing shops and readily available loan sharks.
‘These are driving
the poorest in our community into further debt’.
I will actively
campaign against more cash chequing shops, loan sharks and pay day loan
dependency. Instead this must be replaced with beneficial financial
advice and less costly solutions to get out of debt, such as credit unions.
Energy bills have gone up by as much as 20%,
causing immense financial hardship and meaning that many are struggling to heat
Health can be seriously affected by cold and
badly insulated homes impacting on the most vulnerable in our society and
costing the NHS almost a billion pounds a year. Regardless of this the
Government cut the Winter Fuel allowance for pensioners as well as the
budget for the Warm Front programme. This is an absolute disgrace and if
elected I will campaign to have these reinstated.
We need to develop longer term solutions to
these issues. Therefore I will lobby the Government to use money raised
from carbon taxes to make our homes energy efficient. Such an initiative has
the potential to create thousands of jobs, is good for the environment and
creates a viable solution for using less energy for lower bills.
I will also sing up and many constituents as
I can to encourage collective switching negotiating a lower fuel tariff for as
many people as possible. Our elderly should not be forced to decide between
heat or food.
Environment Recycle and Re-energise
Climate change and environmental degradation
are two of the greatest threats humanity face. Locally and
internationally poor environmental conditions have the worst effect on the most
deprived in society.
‘Environmental change can bring so many
benefits to a community. This is why I support investment in a green economy,
green jobs and a sustainable future’.
As a nation it is important to take swift and
decisive action against climate change. This is why I believe there should be
an extensive reduction in carbon emissions.
I would like to lead Croydon North in doing
their part to make a difference to our local environment. Education and
resources to recycle need to be made more readily available. Therefore if
elected I would run a campaign alongside the council to raise awareness of recycling
as well as increasing the resources such as recycling points to encourage the
I would also seek funding to regenerate
Croydon North’s green spaces alongside local community groups, developing and
maintaining them for the enjoyment and practical use of all residents.
I will fiercely oppose plans and support the
campaign to oppose any plans by local
Council to build in incineration plant that will turn Croydon into the waste
capital of London.
‘As a keen cyclist I know how dangerous our
roads can be’.
With the financial crisis impoverished
communities are turning to bikes for transport.
The increased cost of public transport means
more and more people will be cycling. We have to plan for the future and build
a cycling culture in Croydon North for the sake of the environment, to help
save lives and reduce serious injury.
I completely support a reduction in the speed
limit on local roads it is proven method of to save peoples the lies of both
pedestrians and cyclists.
I will campaign for cycle safety training to
be offered at schools as well as wider promotion of Croydon Councils previous
cycling proficiency schemes.
Businesses’ need to become ‘bike-friendly’ by
providing shower facilities, safe cycle storage and supporting low cost cycle
purchase schemes. I would argue for more cycle parking schemes and ensure that
it is compulsory for new building developments to include the issue of cycling
as part of any new development or urban planning.
My plan if elected is to undertake a public
consultation to help develop and launch an integrated Cycling Plan for Croydon
North including issues such as traffic light sequencing and tackling the poor
state of our roads.
I would want to explore supporting or
creating a cycling accessible velodrome to benefit from increased interest post
Olympics. I would also seek planning permission and obtain funding for the
creation of a BMX track for youngsters.
I believe that existing cycle routes are
connected and vastly expanded and would like to work with other campaigning
organisations that work to promote safe cycling to produce a concrete plan for
Boris’ failure to extend his cycling scheme
to boroughs such as Croydon is another snub to outer London boroughs. Croydon
North could benefit from such a scheme and I will lobby City Hall to find out
why this has not be done and to ensure that it is implemented.
The lack of decent housing presents a serious
issue in London. The failure of successive Labour and Conservative Governments
to build adequate social housing has left us in this predicament.
‘I will continue to argue that the Government
should build more social and affordable housing’.
At the same time I will also argue for vacant
properties to be made available to the council, as well as promoting schemes to
help young professionals get onto the property ladder.
If elected I will speak up in Parliament
against the Governments damaging decisions on housing and housing benefits that
have discriminated against under 25’s, single people and has left many from
disadvantaged backgrounds with few options.
Challenging discrimination, celebrating
diversity and anti-racism
Attempts to scapegoat minority communities and
immigrants for the austerity drive of this government must be challenged.
David Cameron has done little to discourage the well known racism that
follows economic downturns. In fact his actions such as his infamous speech
suggesting that “multiculturalism has failed” are a reactionary disgrace.
‘Croydon North is a multi-ethnic, multi-faith and diverse community a
fact that should be celebrated’.
I stand in support of all BME and religious communities
to live and worship freely. If elected I would want to create a forum of all
such groups to hold me to task on delivering their needs. These groups
are the cornerstones of our community and need an effective and accountable
As a seasoned equality campaigner, the chair
of the National Assembly Against Racism and the former lead on race issues in
the GLA I have the most experience in this election on tackling race from the
streets to the institutions. Whilst I served my term incidences of racism went
up everywhere in the country except for in London.
‘I am dedicated to creating a tolerant anti-racist Croydon North that
respects all its residents’.
Peace and Justice
People often criticise the mention of
international peace and justice in British elections as irrelevant to local
issues. However they are crucial in our increasingly globalised world. I also
understand the concerns of the people in Croydon North realising that they have
links in many countries across the world and even where they do not they are
concerned about the development and welfare of others in our global community.
We as citizens have a right to challenge the
unjust impact Britain has on other countries, as it is effectively done in our
name. I don’t believe we as a country should be involved in immoral, illegal
and unjustifiable wars in the Middle East, fuel by Islamophobia. These wars
have cost lives, including British lives and have left this country billions of
pounds in debt. Both the US and the UK failed the people of Iraq and
‘If elected I will campaign for peace justice
and equality. I will support the demand to bring British troops home from
Afghanistan and Iraq and oppose the Trident Nuclear submarine programme’.
I am proud to say that I also support
progressive movements in Latin America, the self-determination of the
Palestinian people, stand against unnecessary international military
interventions and support the cancellation of debt for countries in Africa and
other low income countries across the world that are trapped by unreasonable