Housing, transport, environment: Round up from the first day of the Labour Party conference


CommonSpace reporter David Thomson brings you the news from the first day of the Labour Party conference in Liverpool

TODAY INSTALLMENT (25 September) of the round up of the Labour Party conference includes speeches from the general secretary of Labour, the shadow housing minister, shadow transport secretary and shadow environment secretary.

General secretary of the Labour, Party Iain MacNicol

Ian MacNicol kicked off the conference on Sunday morning by telling delegates that Prime Minister Theresa May has never won a General Election and “our task now is to make sure she never does”.

In a speech where he listed Labour achievements in government including the national minimum wage, the right to join a union and the NHS, MacNicol said: “There will always be those Tories who want to write off the Labour years and pretend no good came from them.

“Let’s make sure none of us ever falls into that Tory trap.”

Shadow housing minister, Theresa Pearce MP

In the afternoon under the section where communities were discussed, Shadow Housing Minister Theresa Pearce said the country was “facing the biggest housing crisis in a generation and the Tories have no answers”.

Pearce added: “We would remove the shackles from local government so they could build the homes of all tenures and infrastructure their communities need.

“Labour will commit to building over a million new homes over the next parliament with half social housing, and invest in the construction skills to tackle the skills shortage and train up a generation.”

Shadow transport secretary, Andy McDonald MP

Following the discussion on communities was a discussion on transport, where the shadow transport minister, Andy McDonald MP, told the conference that “passengers, not profit, should be at the heart of Britain's railway”.

McDonald said: “We are clear about this. We’ll put an end to Britain's rip-off railways, so as private contracts expire, the routes will return to public ownership so profits can be re-invested to improve services and hold fares down.”

Shadow secretary of state for environment, Rachael Maskell MP

The shadow secretary of state for environment, Rachael Maskell, told the conference that Labour would embrace a circular economy.

She said: “Labour will clean our air, develop clean and renewable energy sources, clean manufacture transport, plant millions of trees and we will introduce emission zones for major towns and cities to end the invisible smog which is killing 50,000 people a year.”

Read more: There is nothing feminist about austerity, Dugdale tells Labour Women's Conference

Picture courtesy of Plashing Vole

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