Lib Dems Success on Pensions

In the last couple of week, the Tories have tried to take the credit for the work of the Lib Dem Steve Webb MP, on ensuring a better deal for pensioners.

David Cameron has portrayed himself as the saviour of pensioners; ensuring universal free bus passes, free TV licenses for over 75s and maintaining the winter fuel allowance.

In actual fact, it is the Lib Dems who have helped pensioners the most over the course of the coalition government, including the following policies that were included in the 2010 manifesto (see below)

  • Increased pension by £800 a year since 2010, thanks to our new ‘triple lock’ rule which ensures state pensions always rise with inflation, earnings or 2.5% – whichever is highest.
  • Planned to raise the state pension from £107 to around £144, protecting future pensioners with a fair, single tier pension.
  • Guaranteed 9 million people an automatic workplace pension, which their boss and the government pay in to, giving everyone the confidence to save.

Lib Dem proposals in 2015 only involve taking free bus passes and tv licenses away from the wealthiest pensioners; people who do not need it. There are many instances of wealthy pensioners sending their winter fuel payments back as they do not deem them necessary. The money saved will go towards paying for a discounted bus pass for 16-21 year olds. This is an example of the Lib Dems providing a fairer society for all.

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Liberal Democrats Manifesto 2015 – 5 Pledges

Manifesto-Cover-2015.jpg

Prosperity for all 

Creating a stronger economy is about more than just clearing the deficit that’s why we will balance the budget fairly and invest in building a high skill low carbon economy. To build a strong, green, innovative economy we need to invest in upgrading our national infrastructure and producing the clean renewable energy that will power our future prosperity.

Fair taxes 

Creating a fairer society by cutting income tax by an additional £400 by raising the tax-free allowance to £12,500.

Quality healthcare for all

Creating a fairer society by properly funding our world class public services by investing in them as the economy grows. This means making sure the NHS has the extra £8bn a year it needs by 2020. Ending the stigma around mental health and putting it on equal footing with physical is vital to building a fairer society.

Opportunity for every child

Protecting the education budget from cradle to college, so that every child and young person has the opportunity to fulfill their potential, from nursery school to higher education. Giving children the best start in life by making sure there is a qualified teacher in every class.

Our environment protected

Protecting the environment so that future generations are not left paying for the mistakes of the generations before them. Fighting climate change with five Green Laws.

Taken from http://www.libdems.org.uk 

For more info on the party locally and nationally follow us on twitter @worcesterlibs

The Problem With Football in Worcester

Here is an article that was recently published in the Worcester Liberal Democrat newsletter on the state of local football. We believe more should be done at a local and national level to increase participation and all the benefits that come with it. Football is awash with money; just look at the recent TV rights deal for the Premier League of over £5 billion. 

Football in Worcester has seen a detrimental reduction in participants over the past few years. At the end of the 2013/14 season, the Worcester + District Saturday League was discontinued, a lack of teams being the principle reason. This left no local Saturday football league in the county of Worcestershire. Alongside this, spiralling pitch costs has seen many teams fold, culminating in a farcical league re-organisation during the off-season of 2014 in which teams were shuffled around, not based on their league position, but on which league they wanted to play in – such was the lack of teams staying on from the previous season. There are many reasons for this decline in participation; the lack of, and/or the appalling state of facilities, (many grounds don’t even have changing rooms and those that do are often barely fit for purpose) and the spiralling cost of running a team, from the pitch itself to administration, fines, the list goes on. So the question is – why aren’t we doing anything about it? We are all aware of the benefits of local sport, particularly in this day and age with the so-called ‘obesity epidemic’. Surely more can be done to encourage new football teams to run in the area, and to keep costs down so it can be enjoyed by all, for the benefit of the participants and the community. Lib Dems in Worcester will strive to improve playing fields and facilities.

Written by Worcester Liberal Democrat member, Adam Warner.

For more information of the Lib Dems both locally and nationally, follow us on twitter @worcesterlibs. To get involved with campaigning and policy, contact us at worcesterlibdems@yahoo.co.uk.

The Gove Files : Why Britain needs a Liberal Influence in Government

The changes Michael Gove made to education during his four years as education secretary (2010-2014) will go down as the most catastrophic in recent times. Gove’s well publicised agenda of academies, free schools with unqualified teachers, and exam reform which encouraged the re-introduction of a ‘success or failure’ culture, have been deplored by teachers and those in the education industry.

The Gove Files – released by the Liberal Democarts yesterday (2nd Feb 15), highlight the policies of his which were stopped and the policies we have managed to implement despite him.

David Cameron’s announcement on education further highlights how the Conservatives can’t be trusted with our schools. He pledged that no further cuts will be made and the budget maintained. However, it is not set to rise with inflation, meaning that in real terms it will have reduced. Cameron’s attempts to mislead the public were foiled, as BBC political editor, Nick Robinson forced him to admit it during a press conference on the issue.

The Liberal Democrats have saved the system from being transformed for the worse during the current Parliament. The following have been implemented, despite Gove’s vocal opposition :

1) The Pupil Premium – A £2.5billion a year policy to help raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils and close the gap between them and their peers.

2) Universal Free School Meals – All children in Key Stage 1 (Reception – Year 2) are now entitled to hot, healthy free school meal.

3) Duty for Schools to Provide Career’s Advice – Enabling young people to be more prepared for the world of work after they leave formal education.

Without the Liberal Democrats none of this would have taken place. Gove instead wanted to do the following:

1. Have profit-making free schools
2. Bring back the old O-level and CSE divide
3. Cut new nursery buildings
4. Rewrite history in the national curriculum
5. Axe climate change from national curriculum
6. Change the Early Years Ratio
7. Axe speaking and listening and human rights from the national curriculum
8. Politicise Ofsted

All of these were successfully blocked by the Liberal Democrats.

All the above examples highlight the incompetence of the Conservatives on education and show how the Liberal Democrats have fought tirelessly to ensure young people from all backgrounds have more equal opportunities.

The the full ‘Gove Files’ click on the link below.

https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/libdems/pages/7474/attachments/original/1422868675/Gove_Files_-_How_the_Lib_Dems_improved_education.pdf?1422868675