Sheffield MP launches Labour council election manifesto with pledges on cost of living and job creation
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The Sheffield Heeley MP introduced the document, called Our Plan for Sheffield, setting out the party’s five priority areas for the council over the next year, at a launch event held in the city’s Olympic Legacy Park in Attercliffe.
The manifesto’s five key areas are:
- Supporting residents through the cost-of-living crisis;
- Growing the local economy;
- Making Sheffield more connected;
- Investing in neighbourhoods;
- Protecting health and wellbeing
Ms Haigh spoke to an audience of more than 100 Labour members, councillors and council candidates, as well as MPs Clive Betts and Olivia Blake. She stressed the need for “a Labour government working with Labour councils” to get the UK back on track.
She said: “We have dedicated £28 billion a year, investing in the gigafactories that we will need to power the green industrial revolution, investing in automotive manufacturing, in hydrogen, in offshore and onshore wind, in nuclear, and the alternative fuels that are going to power the green transition.”
The manifesto talks about creating thousands of new jobs in green manufacturing through the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District along the Sheffield-Rotherham corridor.
Ms Haigh, who is Shadow Transport Secretary, spoke of the need to end the “ideological ban” on councils owning their own bus companies: “Working with a Labour council and a Labour Mayor we would give that power to communities here to set routes, fares and services.” She also recommitted Labour to bringing the railways back into public ownership.
Council leader Terry Fox set out plans to invest in neighbourhood services, building on the cost-of-living budget his party presented to the council earlier this month.
He spoke of a recent encounter with a Manor resident struggling in the rising cost-of-living crisis: “I went to one of my constituents just the other week, who took me out of his kitchen, into his front room and said that his lightbulb had gone. He had one light bulb…
“That’s the extent of the cost-of-living crisis in this city and why we need a Labour council working with a Labour government.”
He added: “As the manifesto spells out, we remain resolute in our Labour values and commitment to delivering the changes we need that drive us. We will never accept inequalities, nor a managed decline.
“We must learn from the boldness of Sheffield’s past to tackle today’s problems and create a better future. This is why we are today committing to a series of radical — and wholeheartedly Labour — plans to deliver for the city.”
The document speaks about the need to bring the council “closer to the people it serves by delivering services at a more local level, and redesign the organisation so it is more accountable and responsive to local needs”.
It also says: “We created the Local Area Committees to make the council more responsive to local needs, and doubled funding for community groups and activities that contribute to wellbeing”.
Sheffeld City Council elections take place on May 4, with one out of three councillors in each ward up for election. For the first time, voters will need to show photo ID at polling stations.