Ending the 2012-2013 cycle

Thank you for all your comments and submissions to the National Policy Forum debates over the past six months. As you may know, the policy process was changed after a vote at Annual Conference last year, so that each year the NPF spends most of its time working on a few priority issues set by Conference. A lot of party members and NPF reps suggested this change, as the previous process covered an enormous range of issues, but with little depth to the discussions.

So Conference voted for a list of priority issues last year, and those subjects made up the documents that CLPs and the NPF have discussed this year. The NPF met at Aston University last month to finalise documents taking submissions into account. To keep this report brief, our website has a page for each priority issues, where you can see a summary of the issues and conclusions – plus the full documents for anyone who wants to look in more detail. Here are the links to each page:

Our Buses and Railways: Giving Communities more of a say

A British Investment Bank

Tax avoidance: Tax havens

Childcare: What matters to parents and children

Young people and politics: making a fresh start

Protecting workers, including the role of agency workers, the Living Wage and the Gangmasters Licensing Authority

Vocational education, apprenticeships and the role of job guarantees in tackling youth unemployment

Britain’s role in Global Development

21st Century NHS and Social Care : Delivering Integration

The housing crisis: house building and a private rented sector that works for Britain’s families

Each Commission will present its annual report at Conference and the final documents on the issues above will be debated and agreed. So we hope these pages will be especially useful for those who are going to Conference.

As well as this joint report, you can see a copy of Helena’s report to Young Labour here 

Priorities for next year

Annual Conference will also hold a ballot on the next set of priorities to be discussed. If you have any views on issues not covered above, that you think are priorities, please let us know. You should also speak to your CLP’s conference delegate, as they will be asked to vote on this. NPF reps at Aston did discuss some ideas on this, and you can see the conclusions here,

We have also spent a lot of time speaking to members across the region about this, and based on what you have told us, these are the biggest issues that we think should be priorities over the next 12 months:

  • ·         Getting everyone back to work in good quality jobs
  • ·         Bringing down the cost of living
  • ·         Ownership of the railways
  • ·         Europe
  • ·         Replacing Trident
  • ·         Welfare reform – doing it fairly

 All issues are discussed

A lot of people have asked us, “What happens if an issue isn’t a priority issue?” If you do want to make a submission or debate an issue that isn’t on the list above, that’s no problem. Have your discussion and then make a submission through the Your Britain website (see below). Each policy commission will discuss all submissions, as eventually all manifesto issues will have to be discussed.

 

Your Britain – the policy discussion website

For many years, party members (and we) have asked for a website that allows party members to post submissions publicly and to debate policy. There is now a website to do just this -

www.yourbritain.org.uk

There have already been over 1500 submissions made and a lot of debate. The site lets you see what other CLPs, members, unions and affiliates think (as well as some outside organisations). You can add your own submissions and comment on others. It’s really worth a look – so we hope you will use it to have your say.

 Conference 2013 – Brighton

Conference is back in Brighton this year. As it’s in our region, we know a lot of you will be at Conference, and we will be too, so please find us and say hello. If you want to speak us at Conference, please email us npf.southeast@ntlworld.com.

If you are a delegate at Conference, we would recommend the private delegate-only policy seminars. Lobbyists, visitors and the media are banned from them, so they give you a much better chance to discuss issues with shadow ministers and, as the media isn’t there, the discussions can be more open.

 

 

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