My key priorities
As well campaigning for a wider Yorkshire devolution deal my top priorities as mayor will be to:
- Negotiate with the Government to get the Sheffield City Region the best possible deal in terms of powers and funding.
- Use those powers to designate bus services as community assets and work with local authorities to take bus provision back into public ownership.
- Support the appointment of a female Deputy Mayor and a gender-balanced combined authority.
Attract new investment and well-paid jobs to the Sheffield City Region and ensure that our people have the skills and training to do them.
- Establish a Mayor’s Community Fund, which will include the entirety of my mayoral salary, to back region wide initiatives focussed on: fighting child poverty, helping the homeless, and improving our environment.
My key policy ideas
- Ensure subsidised bus routes to some of the harder-to-reach towns and villages in the region and introduce special concessionary schemes for students, apprentices and adults helping their children get to school.
- Support the establishment of new, not-for-profit and co-operative bus services to ensure greater staff and passenger involvement in decision-making.
- Dedicate a proportion of the Mayor’s Community Fund to providing opportunities for children and young people from our most deprived communities to access museums, theatres, sports events and other cultural activities.
You can also watch more about my campaign to end child poverty here.
Establish a Youth Combined Authority which will meet regularly with the mayor. It will be representative of the four local authorities that make up the city region, gender-balanced and reflecting the full diversity of the city region.
- Develop a Sheffield City Region Employers’ Charter which sets out basic standards for good business, such as addressing the pay gap between men and women, encouraging flexible working and paying a living wage.
Guarantee a living wage of £8.45 per hour for all employees of the Sheffield City Region and all those we contract to deliver projects and services and will minimise the use of agency staff and zero-hours contracts.
- Create a Sheffield City Region Ethical Care Charter to set out standards for social care in the city region and require care workers to be paid the living wage and end exploitative zero-hours contracts.
- Develop a scheme to provide incentives to local tradesmen to support initiatives to help older people to live independently in their own homes.
I will fight for the UK to remain in the Customs Union to protect businesses in the region who depend on ties with the EU, and defend the rights of EU citizens who are already living and working in Sheffield City Region.
I will also continue to campaign for The Sheffield City Region’s fair share of the proposed Shared Prosperity Fund and work with the universities to protect research funding so that we do not lose out when European funding comes to an end.
- Work with Yorkshire Water and the Environment Agency to develop a plan to prevent flooding, prepare communities for it, and protect homes and businesses from damage.
Negotiate the first Local Energy Devolution Deal with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The deal will offer to cut carbon emissions through wide-ranging energy efficiency and micro-generation measures in return for Sheffield City Region’s share of specific energy funds currently controlled by central government. Then use the proceeds of the deal to create a Mayor’s Community Energy Fund which will be used to invest in widespread energy efficiency measures, supporting community energy and micro-generation schemes and investing in new technologies to manage energy consumption, and provide additional support for the elderly to insulate their homes and reduce their energy bills.
- Work with the four local authorities to develop a ‘Clean Streets Co-operative’ social enterprise to target graffiti, fly tipping and local litter and introduce an Air Quality Action Plan for the whole city region.
- Support The Community Forest Trust and The Woodland Trust’s proposal to create a Northern Forest and will develop a plan to ensure that 1 million trees are planted in the Sheffield City Region to make our towns and cities greener and our city region more attractive and sustainable; committing a proportion of the Mayoral Community Fund towards this important cause.
- Introduce an Equalities Scrutiny Committee to work alongside the Combined Authority to ensure that all the activities set out in my manifesto are working to make our city region more inclusive.
- I will also support our local WASPI women in their campaign against the unfairness in the change to the state pension age.
Support co-operative housing schemes and encourage local councils to take tough action against rogue private landlords.
- Establish a Sheffield City Region Homelessness Network and Temporary Accommodation Board to improve the condition of Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) and other B&Bs. Whilst also committing a proportion of my Mayor’s Community Fund to support projects which are placing homeless people in safe and secure accommodation.
If you have any questions, comments or ideas for me, then please get in touch and I will get back to you.