Summary

A decade of austerity under Conservative/Lib-Dem and Conservative governments has led to deterioration in public services, made worse by the Coronavirus pandemic. Wiltshire deserves better.

A Labour-led Wiltshire Council will focus on improving services for residents, making our county fairer, more inclusive and enterprising, creating opportunities and encouraging participation from all.

This Manifesto sets out nine essential steps to delivering our vision for Wiltshire:

1. Creating a Dynamic Local Economy – a local economy that works for everyone allowing us to recover and grow together.
2. Climate Emergency & The Environment – action to address the Climate Emergency, the county’s most serious challenge.
3. Education & Youth Services – giving every child and young person a chance of a better future.
4. Meeting Local Housing Needs –delivering homes that people can afford.
5. Delivering Care – social care that really cares, providing dignity and respect to our most vulnerable and supporting carers.
6. Getting Wiltshire Moving – creating greener transport options and improving road safety.
7. Keeping Our Communities Safe – reinstating neighbourhood policing to better serve communities.
8. Culture & Leisure – getting the best out of leisure, helping the creative sector recovery from the pandemic.
9. Open Local Government – open, transparent, accessible local government with meaningful consultation.

The programme set out in our Manifesto is ambitious for Wiltshire, but also pragmatic, achievable and essential. As far as possible, each part of our programme has been costed and is affordable.

The Coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the problems of inequality in our society. Action is imperative. Failure to act will only allow inequalities to get worse.

Labour has the vision to help Wiltshire, not just to recover, but to build back better and fairer.

Introduction

Since 2010, successive Conservative/Lib-Dem and Conservative governments have cut the funding of local government to the bone. This has significantly reduced the ability of local authorities to provide much-needed local services and respond to crises such as the Coronavirus pandemic.

Nevertheless, Labour-run councils up and down the country have shown that by innovating they have been able to maintain and improve the services they provide to local communities.

Wiltshire Labour recognises that resources are scarce. In this manifesto, we have therefore set out a programme that is ambitious about tackling the problems that local people face, but also pragmatic, with realistic approaches that place a strong emphasis on working in partnership with local businesses and the voluntary sector.

Under-pinning this programme are sensible proposals, set out in Chapter 1, to help the Wiltshire economy recover from the devastating effect of the Coronavirus pandemic. The growth that these policies will deliver will raise increased revenue to fund the modest spending commitments made.

At the Wiltshire Council Elections on Thursday 6th May 2021, the residents of Wiltshire have a choice: more of the same, or a Labour-led council that will:

  • Create a dynamic economy in Wiltshire that works for everyone.
  • Investment in economic growth and secure jobs throughout the county, building the wealth of communities in Wiltshire to allow us to recover and grow together.
  • Deliver a housing programme that is truly affordable.
  • Building at least 500 council homes each year, providing homes that local people can afford.
  • Achieve a greener, cleaner Wiltshire by 2030.
  • A serious, ambitious and achievable agenda to tackle the climate emergency, building towards the goal of making Wiltshire net zero carbon by 2030.
  • Provide services across Wiltshire that consider the needs of all.
  • Ensuring that policies and services across Wiltshire are able to meet the needs of and are accessible to all, especially those within our society whom COVID-19 has hit hardest.
  • Work for the people and with the people of Wiltshire.
  • Encouraging representation and involvement from all parts of the community.
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