• Faith Leaders Speak Out on Food Poverty Campaign Led By SLF

    April 15, 2014 11:41 PM

    The Social Liberal Forum, which backed the motion on Food Poverty passed unanimously at Liberal Democrat Spring Conference earlier this year, applauds and welcomes further pressure by End Hunger Fast and faith leaders on this issue which so gravely concerns all of us.

    Faith groups are well-represented among those working on the front line in offering support to those in need.  It is clear that support traditionally offered by the welfare safety net is failing far t

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  • Towards a sensible welfare system

    April 08, 2014 3:39 PM

    This post was originally published at Liberal Democrat Voice. Where is the development of Lib Dem welfare policy? It’s hard to see any. Even the recent living standards policy paper (pdf) said “we do not believe tha

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  • Budget 2014: where are the Liberal Democrat priorities?

    March 19, 2014 2:56 PM

    Much of this year's Budget comes as little surprise. With a tight fiscal background and given George Osborne's penchant for playing to the gallery, so much is predictable. Ditto the widely-trailed coalition announcements on the income tax threshold (where Nick Clegg has been desperate to stop the Tories claiming credit for the policy they opposed in 2010) and childcare. But where - again - are the unequivocally Liberal policies? Extending childcare for those in receipt of Universal Credit is ab

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  • The Policy Lib Dems are not allowed to see

    March 05, 2014 10:37 AM

    So what are these proposals that no-one dare let Liberal Democrats see at Conference? There is an increasing body of reputable opinion and evidence that market competition is an expensive irrelevance in healthcare. It is interesting to note that every government since Margaret Thatcher has pursued the same policy: that of exposing the NHS to more and more market competition. The assumption has been that the only way to raise standards and reduce prices in the NHS is the market. Recently a strin

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  • How to fix the structural deficit, the fair way

    March 04, 2014 11:09 AM

    There has been considerable debate about how best to fix the structural deficit.  Figures of £25billion have been posited as how much is needed to do this.  There is some dispute as to whether this figure is really accurate; but for now the assumption that it is can be made.  There is also confusion between the various measures of balancing the books.   The speech by

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  • On Child Poverty Targets - On which I agree with David Laws

    March 03, 2014 12:58 PM

    This article first appeared on Lib Dem Voice on 1st March. "A fair, free and open society, in which… no one shall be enslaved by poverty.” The fundamental basis of our party’s constitution – its very soul – is the elimination of poverty. We may disagree amongst us on how best to achieve this ambitious goal, but there’s little dissent on having it as a goal, particularly when

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  • Our Policy Making Processes are Broken

    February 25, 2014 10:11 AM

    Charles West has been a District Councillor, Parliamentary Candidate and Chair of local parties in Shropshire - this article was previously submitted to Lib Dem Voice who refused to publish it. Fellow Liberal Democrats, our policy-making processes are broken. We are not as democratic as we would like to believe. I have long been frustrated by the fact that we lack a coherent overall policy for health and the NHS. I now know at least some of the reasons for that failure. It was certain

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  • Times letter on Lib Dem manifesto pledges, 19/02/14

    February 19, 2014 8:18 AM

    Members of the Liberal Democrat Federal Policy Committee - together with Social Liberal Form Council members - have written to the Times reasserting the party's democratic and independent manifesto process. This letter is reproduced here in full (the letter and an shorter list of signatories appeared in the Times):
    Sir, At a time when political leadership and vision are in short supply, to

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  • Vince Cable sets out the Lib Dem approach to the economy

    January 28, 2014 12:05 PM

    Vince Cable’s speech to the Royal Economic society is being reported as undermining the Chancellor in his pursuit of a budget surplus. This misses the point, as Vince is rightly focussed less on the ins and outs of Westminster politics and more on ways to generate real sustainable prosperity in the wider economy. In his

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