Campbell challenges Government to support the Sustainable Communities

Speaking at a rally tonight to promote the Sustainable Communities Bill, Liberal Democrat Leader Menzies Campbell will challenge the Labour Government to support the Bill.

He pointed out that the original Bill was introduced by the Liberal Democrats in 2002.

Menzies Campbell said:

“I am here to pledge the Liberal Democrats’ support for the Sustainable Communities Bill.

“Not only because a commitment to empowering local communities lies at the very heart of our party’s philosophy. But also because we have a proven record on this issue and we are very proud of it.

“Labour is strong on rhetoric when it comes to local communities and the importance of devolving power. But if they are to be believed, they must end their ambivalence towards the Bill.”

Talking about the importance of the Bill, Menzies Campbell said:

“Communities across the United Kingdom are suffering. People feel powerless to counter the effects of twin pressures on their local communities.

“First, competition from multi-national business undercuts local providers and forces smaller shops to close.

“And second, the decisions made by faceless central government – over financial support for local communities – fail to reflect local priorities because they do not sufficiently engage local people in the decision-making process.

“As a result of those pressures local facilities are being lost. Shops, post offices, schools and medical practices are all closing. People in urban and rural areas are watching the decline of their town centres.

“We are witnessing the emergence of Ghost Town Britain. It makes local people angry and frustrated. And as the Member of Parliament for a rural seat where small towns rely on good local amenities – it makes me angry too.

“But the Sustainable Communities Bill offers a chance to change things. It will require councils to promote local participation in the debate about how to make communities sustainable. And it will require government to consider how it can assist local councils to meet the needs highlighted by local people.

“This bill will put the interests of local people at the forefront of policy making. And it will put the heart back into local communities throughout this country. I am proud to support it. And I challenge Ruth Kelly and the Labour Government to do the same.”

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2 Responses to Campbell challenges Government to support the Sustainable Communities

  1. Pingback: Official website of Ming Campbell MP (Rt. Hon. Sir Menzies Campbell CBE QC MP) » Blog Archive » Watch: Campbell backs Sustainable Communities Bill

  2. Reg Cane B.Ed. says:

    For the sake of our grandchildren we need to make our communities much more sustainable…All Chiefs and no Indians is not in the least sustainable. We must nurture our “Seed Corn” and provide a system where it may thrive.If we drive our young people out because they cannot afford or find a good home in which to live and raise a family what is our future ?
    The need for a society which values and gives a purpose to all its citizens is paramount to our nation.Big is very rarely better than smaller intimate and more responsive organisations.”Big Brother” is no substitute for a responsive brother.
    The value of the individual has been lost to the “Cheque Book”. We have to enable people to develop their true worth and talents.It would be no small quest to start with schools built for their pupils and not those who run them.There is no substitute for teachers knowing their pupils and their students and their families knowing their knowing their teachers.
    “A bean counter must know the value of beans and understand them”

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