With you, for you!
Local Election Manifesto
Published by the Labour Party in the London Borough of Sutton
Supported by the co-operative party
Labour in Sutton offers an ambitious programme to stimulate economic growth and fairness for local people. Our vision charts an inclusive Sutton that enables local people, creates shared success and delivers change. Labour will:
- Secure fairness by tackling inequalities and the cost of living crisis by establishing a Fairness Commission
- Build a stronger local economy by attracting inward investment, promoting social enterprise and establishing a Co-operative Development Agency
- Protect and improve our environment by undertaking a review of the incinerator, recycling and waste management – driven by a new Sustainable Sutton Task Force
- Proactively defend St Helier Hospital from closures by scrutinising any decommissioning of its services. Defend and strengthen public services by working in partnership, reforming local health services and intervening proactively in support of St Helier Hospital
- Meet local housing needs by building 400 affordable homes, controlling private rent and reforming the Council Repairs Service
- Support hard working families by improving child care provision and building a new secondary school
- Foster community cohesion by enhancing local facilities and neighbourhood policing.
The Coalition’s dismissal of the cost of living crisis demonstrates how out of touch it is with the reality facing people in Sutton. The government can’t deal with the long-term challenges we face because it’s committed to a race to the bottom - grounded in low pay, low skills, low prospects and low productivity. The way to make a real difference in people’s lives is to make sure the economy works for working people. That begins by creating decent, secure, well-paid jobs, so we can all benefit from the recovery. Economic prosperity with Labour will enable better delivery of integrated services, foster environmentally-friendly communities and secure a fairer Sutton.
The Tory-led government, supported by Liberal Democrat MPs Burstow and Brake, has imposed austerity, instead of promoting growth. They have failed to regulate key markets such as energy and so created food bank poverty. Labour will reverse this trend by working strategically to achieve fundamental change, facilitating economic investment and raising standards.
Lib Dem backing for the Tory-led Coalition nationally is reciprocated locally by the Tories working in alliance with the Lib Dem administration. This has included support for service-cutting budgets that have a serious impact on the daily lives of hard working families, older, and disabled people.
It is no wonder that local people tell us that the established parties are the same. Lib Dems may have been in office since 1986, but their incompetent use of power has lacked strategic direction, proven to be ineffectual in delivering service improvement and they’ve fractured our communities.
Local Tories have encouraged service cuts in the name of austerity. They have failed to challenge Lib Dem inaction to develop local schools for local children and allowed the dismantling of Sutton’s reputation as a green borough.
The mix of incompetence and impotence has resulted in a toxic alliance.
In the last 10 years, Sutton has dropped 200 places in the 390 councils’ recycling league table. Attempting to compensate for this, in the run up to local elections, the Lib-Dems have indulged in the costly publicity gimmick of dumping 11 tons of rubbish in the High Street. At the same time, the council have refused to show visible support for the Save St Helier Hospital Campaign by not allowing slogans on the side of council vehicles. The Council is prepared to fight a judicial review in order to secure an incinerator in the borough, yet it is not fighting for the return of £219 million promised investment for St Helier Hospital. The Lib Dem run Council is in disarray; it lacks a sense of strategic direction and it doesn’t have the courage to make a positive difference to the lives of people living and working in Sutton.
Do not assume UKIP shares your values. The truth is they are even more likely to look out for the privileged few than the Tories. They want to introduce a flat tax rate – a tax cut for the richest, a tax rise for everyone else and would scrap a series of employment protections.
Labour provides the only credible progressive agenda that will deliver change for Sutton, which we set out in this borough manifesto. We will continue to engage with local people to find sustainable solutions, to act in the interests of our community and put confidence back into public services. Labour are with you and for you in these tough times.
Labour – Delivering Change not Excuses
Here are our Pledges for a better Sutton that will help local families get on with their lives:
Fighting for a fairer cost of living not putting you in debt. Council Tax to pay for service improvements should be raised no more than inflation in any given year for the next four years, so residents know what to budget for. We will run cheaper energy schemes, tackle expensive lending locally and provide better advice services to help you get on. Abolition of the unfair Bedroom Tax and establishment of a local Fairness Commission and a Co-operative Development Agency
A 50% recycling target not Lib Dem imposed Incinerators. The Liberal Democrats have agreed to build an incinerator in the borough. We will seek to withdraw the Council from related contracts and aim for more quality green jobs instead. We will establish a sustainability taskforce to drive improvement; crackdown on eyesore gardens; and phase out charges for the collection of bulky waste items
A rebuilt St Helier Hospital not closures to A&E and maternity. We will demand the £219 million we are owed locally by the government to rebuild a modern new hospital at St Helier.
400 New Homes for locals, not increasing private rents. 400 more affordable local homes in the next 4 years to help local residents to rent buy or join a shared ownership scheme. A better repairs service to improve Council homes with the Council still a landlord and with Council Tenants’ rents being capped.
A new secondary school for locals not cuts to childcare. Working with a future Labour Government to extend free childcare for three and four year olds from 15 hours to 25 hours for a working parent. A Primary Childcare Guarantee giving all parents of primary-aged children access to childcare from 8am-6pm through their school. A new careers service to help our children’s future
Tackle crime and graffiti, not let the borough look run down. Pressing the Mayor of London to maintain a stronger local team of Police and Police Community Support Officers in every part of Sutton to make you feel safe and secure
Tackling the Cost of Living
A Labour Council will do what it can to make your life easier in tough times. We will also work with any Labour Government elected in 2015 which can do so much more to tackle the cost of living crisis
1. Establish a Sutton Fairness Commission to recommend steps on how to improve the quality of life across the borough by making it a fairer place for all who live and work here. It will influence and inform the council on how it makes decisions on allocating resources.
2. Ensure that Council Tax to pay for service improvements should be raised no more than inflation in any given year for the next four years, so residents know what to budget for.
3. Set up a "Waste Watch" unit (one off funding cost as future funding will be subject to making savings) to examine complaints of waste from the public and Councillors. Develop Zero based budgeting to review services in line with fairness objectives.
4. Review staff accommodation with a view to moving non-frontline staff to the Civic Offices Complex. This is not the time for capital investment as in the Sutton Plan Buildings that are surplus to requirements will be considered for community use prior to any other decision being made about them.
5. Review Budget Consultation procedures and develop "Participatory Budgeting" that involves many more residents in the budget process.
6. Encourage existing service providers to mutualise and develop the co-operative sector in Sutton. We will consider a stakeholder co-operative model when looking for external capital finance and when tendering or re-tendering for services.
7. Develop procurement strategies that make a direct link between the Community Plan and other strategic objectives and contract specifications ensuring that community benefits can be fully integrated into the procurement process and that ‘Social Value’ is fully considered
8. Develop ethical "Fair Wages" and "Fair Employment" clauses in all external contracts that employ staff, so we have the best staff at all levels. Ensure minimum payments are at “London Living Wage” level. We will work to encourage all local employers to move to this too. We will further review any extreme pay differentials in conjunction with staff trade union representatives.
9. Support Trade Justice by encouraging ethical purchasing policies.
10. Tell you straight that the fact Sutton needs a food bank is a disgrace. We will look at what discretionary support a rich borough like Sutton can provide. We will tackle debt and reduce the need for payday loan companies:
• We will support Sutton’s Credit Union as a people’s bank and a financial co-operative
• Support other local authorities that are demanding new powers from government to curb high-stakes gambling machines in betting shops. They are capable of taking bets of £300 a minute and contribute to debt
• We will provide a welfare benefits hotline
• We will strengthen advice services
• Develop an anti-poverty and social exclusion strategy as part of our overall fairness strategy aimed at areas, not individuals, and which improves access to services.
• We will review welfare provision in the borough.
11. Initiate collective energy purchasing with a ‘Switched on Sutton’ scheme giving residents access to more competitive energy prices, at a time when the government is not doing enough and only acts when Labour proposes a freeze.
Having your say
If we are to achieve a cohesive borough at a time of financial difficulty, it is important that residents have a chance to contribute their views
1. Develop a Young People's Community Plan, linked to the Council’s own Community Plan, in consultation with young people
2. Broaden library card to provide a local 'freedom card' that will entitle residents to access Council services like libraries, leisure centres and environmental services as well as discounts from the Council and other local organisations
3. Investigate extension of Community Centre facilities to meet the needs of new and emerging communities
4. Support more use of ‘Community rights’ including a safeguarding ‘community right to acquire’ designation for St Helier Hospital if it is ever proposed to dispose of the site and also protecting much loved local pubs, which can instead be developed more as local community hubs
5. Encourage some neighbourhood watch groups to double up as residents’ associations to improve local coverage
6. Develop "Street Watch" co-ordinators across the borough (as Croydon already have) to act as the Environmental and Street Scene equivalent of Neighbourhood Watch. 400 such reps could cover the entire borough each covering 200 homes.
7. Agree long-term funding for Sutton Women's Centre and a Sutton Trade Union Resource Centre
8. Build a much more comprehensive local advice service to support well-being, tackle debt and promote community resilience; Increase funding for the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) to restore services at St Helier.
9. Support community groups that encourage tolerance and respect for all communities in the borough and promote community cohesion
10. Promote public engagement in decision-making: for example through service co-production similar to health “expert patient schemes”
11. Make it easier and quicker to find the relevant part of the Council website
12. Campaign locally to seek the repeal of the Lobbying Bill which impacts on the ability of civil society groups to campaign
13. Review Town-Twinning to make it more relevant to a more connected planet where engagement and sharing best practice with poorer communities can be more easily done online
14. Develop well-being indicators for the borough, with a full online dashboard for any resident to see, covering measures of wellness, civil-society engagement, inequality, cost of living, employment and wage rates
15. Retain the existing six Local Area Committee structure and bring back community representatives on the main Council Committees
16. Ensure Area Committees have wider powers with a devolved local "Ward Initiatives" budget with some resources allocated to Councillors to suggest local improvements. We will also allow Area Committee’s to contribute to the planning process.
Quality Jobs and Ambitious Business
We are focused not only on protecting jobs, but on securing good quality, well-paid jobs for current residents and the residents of the future
1. Set up an economic development unit and foster partnerships with local businesses, including local town management. We will also work much more closely with the local Job Centre in developing a more local service relevant to Sutton. The aim would be to establish a local jobs guarantee for Young people if, or when, we get a labour Government, and to encourage apprenticeships
2. Establish a Co-operative Development Agency either for the borough or jointly with other South London Boroughs to provide prospective co-operatives with investment finance, advice, help with planning applications and where possible, premises.
3. Set up a dedicated team jointly with Sutton Centre for Voluntary Service (SCVS) that will promote the social economy in Sutton and draw up a local Social Economy strategy.
4. Ensure that there is an annual report to the full Council demonstrating the progress in fulfilling co-operative aims. The Council should hold an annual Co-operative and Mutual Audit session, allowing those involved in the promotion of cooperation and mutuality to cross-examine progress.
5. Set out a Strategy for expanding Local Authority Trading
6. Employ a Town Centre Manager to take responsibility for all district centres. Empty shops are a barrier to success in our town centres, so we will review resources to see if we can offer any small business that wants to put an empty shop back into use a 6 month business rate holiday to help them get off the ground.
7. Build confidence about employing disabled people. We will increase awareness of the Access to Work scheme and support local disability organisations to de-stigmatise mental health. We are committed to lobbying national government to scrap the unfair contracts for the Work Capability Assessment.
8. Ensure the Council campaigns for the maximum local Post Office services within the borough avoiding post office closures.
9. Exchange technical and cultural knowledge, information and co-operation with sister local authorities, within the European Union and wider afield including the developing world using online communication. We will ensure that Sutton remains a Fair Trade Borough.
10. Work with the co-operative movement to develop community based electricity and energy co-ops, ensuring sustainable energy can be produced and is distributed fairly and economically to consumers
11. Encourage Council staff involvement in Credit Unions and the Local Economy Trading Scheme (LETS) as well as promoting them more generally. We will publicise and promote the Croydon, Merton and Sutton Credit Union and encourage employers to allow payments by check-off.
12. Review any Council zero hour contracts except where the use of non- exclusive zero hours contracts is to the benefit of and with the agreement of the employee and trade unions and is not imposed
13. Work with providers to make Sutton a fully Wi-Fi-enabled borough. We want everyone to be able to connect to the web for free in main shopping and business areas. We want to ensure the borough has the best connectivity capability for companies who are already based here, as well as for those we want to encourage to move here.
Safe and Secure
Sutton has been a low-crime borough, but fear of crime is high. We will tackle that so people are not only safe, but actually feel safe.
1. Set a clear measurable target for reducing the fear of crime within the borough. This can only be achieved through a highly visible policing strategy. We will also seek to maintain the Safer Neighbourhoods Teams and oppose any cuts to the service by Boris Johnson.
2. Develop a Visible Presence on the Street through regular Community Action Weeks with all of the Sutton Partnership's operatives to be seen out on the streets so as to be seen to reclaim certain areas.
3. Consider developing a voluntary levy of pubs and clubs in Sutton High Street to pay for additional policing of the area in the evenings
4. Develop a "Junior Neighbourhood Warden" scheme to assist with the reporting and tackling of some environmental and enviro-crime problems, through clear up days.
5. Develop a Local Respect campaign and strategy that helps tackle the worst “Eyesore Gardens” (ie mattresses in the front garden) as well as puts more effort into enforcement over noisy parties.
6. Continue the fixed and mobile CCTV cameras scheme and for the Council to provide a subsidised service for the sale of small private CCTV camera systems to individuals in less well off communities
7. Provide long-term commitment, stability and assured funding for local domestic violence services.
8. Introduce "Graffiti Removal Notices" to enable speedy clean-up of private property. Promote more schemes where residents are given paint to paint out graffiti on their fences.
9. Take your security seriously. We will inform the public of emergency planning procedures, while maintaining necessary local security precautions against criminal or terrorist actions.
10. Focus resources on a key local outcome of reducing youth re-offending and will develop joined-up work with partner organisations to make progress in this area.
A Greener, Cleaner, Sustainable Borough
The Council’s green reputation is being damaged. We will turn that around over the next 4 years by very clear actions.
1. Make clear that a truly green council would never support the building of an incinerator that will be a potential health risk, particularly one so close to residential areas. We will review Sutton’s commitment to build an Incinerator with the aim of extracting the borough from any legal contracts as soon as possible. We would instead seek to create more ‘green jobs in the borough.
2. Do something about Sutton’s appalling recycling rate and set a target of 50% recycling after consultation with residents. Labour will establish a Sustainability Task Force to deal with the complexities surrounding the Incinerator, air pollution levels, dramatic falls in recycling and waste management contractual matters as well as considering sustainable approaches to new challenges such as fracking and the threat of increased flooding in some areas.
3. Move to an increase in street cleaning frequency in key areas. We will expand area teams to cover most environmental services in the coming years. We will also make current contracted street cleaning staff permanent thus creating proper jobs not pre-election gimmicks
4. Review the waste management service to ensure we maximise economies of scale whilst retaining all current services.
5. Abolish the charge for Bulky Household waste service for the disabled, elderly and unwaged as part of a move to making it fully free of charge and ensure collection is within three working days.
6. Recognise the concerns raised by residents about littered, overgrown and untidy gardens and so will launch an ‘Eyesore Garden Project’ involving local people in days of action, resulting in enforcement notices wherever necessary.
7. Develop Environmental Health Regulatory and Enforcement Services to provide:
a) Health and Safety law such as helping to protect retail staff from violence.
b) Monitoring and enforcing fire safety measures in properties with commercial cooking facilities.
c) A Pest Control service which should be provided free to residents.
8. Work with energy companies and government agencies to assist householders retro-fit their homes far more quickly to reduce their carbon footprint
9. Work with retailers to move to becoming a “no plastic bag” borough
10. Compile regular Environmental Sustainability Indicators on air pollution, tap water quality, soil pollutants, noise levels, background radiation, and pesticide residues across the whole Borough and publish regular reports. These could later be tied in to overall well-being indicators for the Borough.
11. Review the Council’s Animal Rights Charter. The Council should seek to monitor the living conditions of animals in boarding accommodation, for sale, and for use in experimentation or farming within the Borough.
A Well Planned Town with good Public Transport
We need good infrastructure such as good shops and good transport links to ensure the borough thrives
1. Support the continued viability of Sutton High Street and the district shopping centres. We will undertake a full environmental impact analysis before planning consent is given to any significant development or change of use.
2. Oppose out of town shopping centres. Sutton needs investment in its local retailing infrastructure enabling people to shop locally without over reliance on the car
3. Review our planning and licensing guidelines to stop the spread of fast-food outlets. We will also seek to limit the spread of payday lenders and betting shops. We recognise local pubs have the scope to be community hubs and will not allowing planning policy to allow their continued local decline
4. Maintain and seek to improve existing and proposed conservation areas and Areas of Special Local Character. Special Policy Areas should be converted into Areas of Special Local Character.
5. Review the Community Involvement Policy, including more Neighbourhood Planning across the borough after the pilot in Hackbridge. Operate a 'good neighbour' policy and inform local residents about proposed changes for Council owned land close to where they live with time for discussion before final decisions are taken.
6. Continue to support the Freedom Pass for the elderly and disabled
7. Lobby the GLA to establish a proper black cab rank at Wallington Station as well as extend a Night bus from Morden, past St Helier Hospital to Wallington Station, thus making it a more effective transport hub. We also support reviewing the X26 Wallington stop to move it nearer to Beddington Park to more evenly space X26 stops
8. Support extension of Tramlink to Rosehill and St Helier Hospital via Willow Lane and on to Sutton Town Centre as part of a wider planned extension of the network. But Tramlink must not be provided at the expense of the First Capital Connect service between Sutton, Wimbledon & Luton. We will campaign for a weekend metro service on that line
9. Allow no further road building except that required for access to new developments.
10. Review existing traffic calming schemes such as Road Humps to see they are still effective as well as the STEPs system. We will establish a review mechanism whereby unnecessary ones are removed.
11. Encourage the introduction of Home Zones where traffic speed is restricted to 20mph if that is acceptable to the majority of residents. We will not force residents to have traffic calming measures introduced just to get money back from TfL. Instead we will try and restrict demands provided we get the money for Tramlink extensions.
12. Seek to improve local cycling infrastructure in conjunction with local cycling groups including more ‘quiet and safe routes’ to encourage increased usage
13. Review street scene to reduce Sutton High Street clutter to assist the disabled after the appalling redesign of it under the Liberal Democrats
Protecting Arts, Sport and Culture
Arts, sport and culture are under pressure from cuts. Labour will ensure that we protect provision in order to contribute to local people’s well-being
1. Review the use of the Life Centre considering more mainstream arts and community uses for it, whilst retaining existing library provision
2. Increase library book stock acquisition funding and look at building a branch library in Hackbridge, perhaps combined with other community facilities
3. Retain community and amateur theatrical use of Secombe and Charles Cryer Theatres. In the long run a proper borough theatre would be best placed in a better location in Sutton Town Centre. We will examine how cooperative business can be developed in this area.
4. Seek ways of opening up Times Square and the St Nicholas Centre for evening usage of their central spaces.
5. Seek to protect existing free access to our museums and historic buildings. This has been fought for by Labour for many years and enabled by the last Labour Government and is important for enabling the less well-off access to local cultural facilities.
6. Provide more under 10’s playground facilities in parks as well as "youth shelters" for teenagers and the installation of ball parks, rollerblading, cycling and skateboarding facilities
7. Support use of parks for open air concerts and increase the number of concerts as part of the Sutton Festival as well as consider establishing a maze at Beddington Park.
8. Investigate the option of entering into an agreement with the National Playing Fields Association to protect specific parks and examine whether locally accountable Community or Friends groups can assist with protecting our parks and drawing in further investment.
9. Establish allotment holder co-ops where these are requested
10. Look at the opportunity of developing a new Swimming Pool for Sutton on the existing Cheam baths site. In addition there should be a further artificial multisports pitch in the East of the Borough. These should be under social ownership.
11. Convert the Leisure discount card to a residents' Freedom card that will give discounts on a wide range of Council services, library charges, youth services and private sector facilities.
12. Provide free access to under 18 residents of the St Helier, Hackbridge and Wrythe local area to the David Weir Sports Centre as post-Olympic legacy and as part of a long-term plan to provide free leisure access to all young people in the borough.
Ambitious for our Children and Grandchildren
We are focused on ensuring the local schools that most Sutton children attend continue to improve so parents and children feel there is good provision for the child regardless of ability
1. Wherever possible and working in partnership with cooperative business enterprises, seek to develop and expand extended school provision across the whole borough. We would work with a future Labour Government in its plans to extend free childcare for three and four year olds from 15 hours to 25 hours per week for working parents
2. Invest in services to help local families at an early stage and welcome the existence of Co-operative childcare in the borough
3. Whilst recognising the importance of proper nutrition to educational attainment, explore the widest provision of free school lunches across all school phases, but in particular for all foundation phase children. We will seek to provide kitchen facilities in all schools and also explore provision of free breakfast and after school clubs.
4. By working in partnership with existing maintained provision, support all Sutton schools to achieve Good or Outstanding Ofsted judgments over the Ofsted cycle of inspections.
5. Encourage a local model of provision and seek to expand educational opportunities through cooperation between all Borough schools through federation or cluster arrangements, to share and maximise the effective use of resources.
6. Seek to improve opportunities for secondary phase students to transfer between schools where the need of the individual student warrants this, regardless of schools’ admission arrangements at 11.
7. Support school improvement through a Continuous Professional Development programme or a series of Teachmeets to share good practice. We will also work to encourage all schools to contribute towards facilities time for the teaching and support staff unions to have adequate representation.
8. Recognise the essential contribution of governors to the Borough’s education services and work in partnership with the Forum of Sutton Governors to support governors and seek their views.
9. Meet the need for additional secondary phase places in the borough by supporting the expansion of existing schools and by building a new comprehensive secondary school; this school to be sponsored by an existing Sutton Academy Trust or by a Co-operative Foundation Trust or similar not for profit body.
10. Facilitate the free movement of students between all the Borough’s sixth forms, thereby offering the widest possible range and combination of academic, vocational and technical course choices. This will be achieved by encouraging the integration of current provision made in the borough’s secondary schools and colleges of further education.
11. Ensure the Citizenship curriculum should include the role of civil society, co-operatives and mutual ownership. Business studies should include details of co-operative and mutual structures/legal forms. Every child in Sutton will be offered the opportunity to join a credit union to familiarise them with responsible credit and saving.
12. Support creation of Code Clubs in all our primary schools to give Sutton children a head start in learning about computing.
13. Promote a positive image of our young people in the media such as demonstrated by the Co-operative groups’ 'Truth about Youth' project. We will review all policies such as citizenship, planning and retail licensing with a view to challenging gender stereotyping and sexual objectification of young women.
14. Support children with special educational needs by ensuring that provision is based on need rather than geography. We will also seek to provide additional resources in the areas of Educational Psychology and Speech and Language therapy.
15. Ensure that all Sutton’s children’s safeguarding and social services are fit for purpose. Labour will provide early supportive interventions to keep families together, reducing the need for foster placement and forced adoption. At the same time, where appropriate, we will support existing foster carers in the borough by providing additional support services and increasing the Foster Carer’s Grant. We will continue to use the Fostercare Co-operative which has successfully found homes for difficult- to- place children.
16. Work with Transport for London and where possible co-operative providers, to establish a borough wide Green School Travel Scheme, to foster lifetime sustainable travel patterns and reduce the use of environmentally damaging vehicles on the “school run”. We will encourage ‘walking buses’ and similar schemes wherever possible.
17. Conduct a fundamental review of the borough’s Youth Service with particular emphasis on:
• Provision of a comprehensive network of youth centres across the borough, with a view to identify sites for new facilities, particularly in Hackbridge and Beddington.
• Better and more cost effective use of existing facilities
• Provision of additional Outreach Youth Workers, with a brief to target young people at risk of causing nuisance or engaging in anti-social behaviour.
• Increasing co-operation and support for voluntary sector provision of Youth activities (ie Woodcraft Folk, Scouts, Guides, Boys/Girls Brigades etc)
18. Consult young people as to whether they would wish to have an elected Young Mayor for Sutton with a budget to spend.
19. Work with schools to re-establish a local careers service.
20.seek to identify and mitigate or remove barriers preventing the most economically challenged young people in Sutton from attending university and other forms of tertiary education.
Helping people to live in a good Home
The national and London housing crisis equally applies to Sutton. We will take action to plan and build affordable homes for sale and rent and ensure that tenants of the borough whether privately renting or renting from the Council or other social landlords are fairly treated
1. Continue to be actively involved in partnerships with its Arm’s Length Management Organisation (ALMO), Sutton Housing Partnership, housing associations, the Co-operative sector and private sector, to provide good quality housing using planning and housing policy to plan or build 400 new homes a year over the next 4 years.
2. Examine the possibility of tenant led Community Land Trust's holding housing land for the provision of affordable housing and support self-build housing projects
3. Develop Mutual Housing Co-ops, via a tenant ownership cooperative supported by a secondary housing co-operative. We will also seek to promote Tenant Management Co-operatives normally formed via Tenant Associations.
4. Use money from capital receipts to provide new social housing and encourage Housing Associations to buy existing houses. We will have a target to bring 500 empty properties locally back into use
5. Call for a Strategic Partners asset management strategy to manage public sector land in the borough to provide more affordable housing
6. Support a proper registration scheme for Landlords and letting agents and collaborate with any local authority led lettings agency
7. Look at the options of working with London Councils to bring back a local authority mortgage scheme.
8. Ensure that the Council, as well as being a housing enabler, will continue to be a provider of housing and recognise the clear decision of 82% of Tenants and Leaseholders voted who voted to set up the Sutton Housing Partnership ALMO to bring investment into the borough.
9. Recognise that only 9% of tenants and leaseholders have expressed support for further change such as stock transfer to a housing association. We strongly respect that and will oppose a transfer.
10. Ensure the current repairs service is fully reformed and if necessary recontracted (with in-house and co-operative options considered) in consultation with tenants
11. Ensure there will be only reasonable and affordable increases in Council rents for the next four years.
12. Transfer the cost of maintaining estate greens, unadopted estate roads, footpaths, playgrounds, trees as well as freeholder section 116 services from the Housing Revenue Account to the General Account.
13. Conduct a full review of the points based rent system to ensure that the balance of points is right and that local people can clearly see they are not discriminated against in terms of allocations. We will also reward commitment to our community by local people by restoring the previous succession to tenancy rules to recognise tenants who have lived in their own family home for a very long time.
14. Expect the Sutton Housing Partnership to maintain strong support the Sutton Federation of Tenants and Residents Associations and continue to help it develop
15. Support a Garden Maintenance Scheme for elderly and disabled residents.
16. Take action to assist those affected by the Bedroom Tax prior to abolition by a Labour Government by where possible reclassifying properties
Time for Sutton to have £219 Million for the best Health and Social Care
A Labour Council will stand up for local residents to ensure our health services are protected and that we get the resources we were promised by the last Labour Government
1. Support a local health strategy that includes a full Acute Hospital service with A&E and maternity focused on a rebuilt hospital on the current St Helier site, Specialist Cancer services at the Royal Marsden site, both supported by Local Care Hospitals at St Helier and Wallington. We will demand the borough receives the £219 million it was allocated for a St Helier rebuild by the Labour government in 2009. A Labour council will launch a much bigger campaign for this than the current Council. We will have banners on our dustcarts and at Civic offices like Labour Merton has done. We will support a judicial review to protect local services
2. Welcome Labour’s national commitment to repeal the Health and Social Care Act and we have met with Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham who has further confirmed that. A Labour Council will also campaign against Clause 119 – supported by local Lib Dem MPs.
3. Strengthen the local Health and Wellbeing Board and subject local CCGs to intensive scrutiny, including scrutiny of where GP surgeries are placed, who is funding them and GP financial interests
4. Support a comprehensive network of GP surgeries, Health Centres, Clinics and Community Health services. We will examine ways in which cooperative business can be developed in this area; eg a co-operative consortium of most (or all) local GPs could provide out-of-hours services, similarly a co-operative out-of-hours dental triage service could be set up.
5. Provide modern Day Services for older people and disabled people and an in-house intensive Home Care Service. We want to see accessible services and early intervention rather than a service led by eligibility criteria and a sensible mixed economy of provision which includes care cooperatives.
6. Prior to future legislation, seek to develop whole person care locally through Integrated health, mental health and social care services through CCG/Borough Partnership Boards and Section 31 agreements covering older people, mental health, physical and learning disabled
7. Support the provision of Extra-Care Housing, but this should not be allowed to force elderly residents from their existing homes. We will examine ways in which cooperative business can be developed in this area.
8. Support a reduction in Meals on wheels charges after reviewing resources
9. Expand the Occupational Therapy service and speed up its assessments and ensure enough staff for ongoing provision and expand the choice of physical disability services.
10. Enhance the existing Community Transport Scheme in co-operation with the voluntary and co-operative sector.
11. Develop the public health role of the Council and review all existing project and contracts to address key health and social inequality targets. For example we will see if public health monies could be spent on providing free local gym membership and free swimming for those who are unwaged. We want to see our local public health service developing innovative behaviour change policies and contributing to community resilience
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