I’m proud to be a Liberal Democrat (firstname.lastname@example.org), passionate about fairness, striving for equality in Peterborough, writes Beki Sellick, Liberal Democrat candidate for the Peterborough by-election.
I volunteer in our glorious diverse community, giving leadership and support to build a fair, free and open city.
I’m an immigrant from Watford, choosing to move my family here over a decade ago. I live in Peterborough’s city centre with my family, near my daughter’s state school. I work from home as a sustainable transport engineer, bringing people together for cleaner air and better health. I create jobs, helping companies to implement innovation.
I improve my local community, enabling people to reach their potential. And since before the Referendum, I’ve been campaigning inside and outside the Town Hall, listening to people as more and more join us to #StopBrexit. But I confess to three temptations. I’m tempted to boast about local election results on May 2 when Sandra, Chris and Terri were elected as new Lib Dem councillors. We grew to nine Lib Dem council seats, removing Peterborough’s last UKIP councillor.
I’m tempted to crow about Barbara and Lucy, the two new Lib Dem MEPs we gained in our East of England region. We won from Labour and the Conservatives to come second to the Brexit Party (who picked up UKIP’s old seats), with our clear #StopBrexit message.
I’m tempted to repeat what Brexit means for us in Peterborough: our economy and jobs, our environment and our public services. To share again my positive plan for Peterborough.
1. On the economy, I won’t mention that Opportunity Peterborough’s 2019 survey found 41 per cent of businesses now say Brexit has an increasingly negative impact, putting our jobs at risk.
2. On the environment, I won’t ask why we can’t afford the infrastructure investment Peterborough needs to make cleaner, safer streets with less congestion, and bring in the electric buses I’ve called for at the council.
3. On public services, I won’t point out how much money Brexit is already wasting, or how much more it will cost. #StopBrexit to gain money for the police, the NHS, education…
But I won’t.
Because one issue is undermining our work, the work of so many good people here, to build Peterborough’s cohesive community, our welcoming place to live and work and be.
This by-election (June 6) we must move on from our usual colours and vote with our hearts, to embrace the strongest Remain candidate (local business owner, sustainability engineer and parent).
I must call out Brexit for what it is.
However pleasantly Mike Greene and the Brexit Party present, however shiny their veneer of policies, prise-off the veneer, strip-off their smooth new Lambswool suits and underneath there is Nigel Farage’s wolf: dividing, demeaning and demonising different groups amongst us. Creating scapegoats for whatever ill. Blaming us for our birthplace/ parents/ professionalism/ sexuality/ religion/ gender.
And I must call out the supporters of Brexit: Conservative Paul Bristow and Labour’s Lisa Forbes.