Last night Salford TUSC unveiled its election hoarding on Bolton Road in Walkden with the party's Worsley and Eccles South candidate Steven North saying it was symbolic of the state of the country...
"Our hoarding highlights the issues we believe matter to the people of Salford and are going unaddressed by the main parties and UKIP, who are more interested in helping the bankers and super-rich stash away yet more ill-gotten gains" he explained "While working-class people are struggling, those at the top are hoarding £billions in tax-havens and speculation. We say that money should be taxed and used to rebuild public services, create real jobs and raise wages. It's our hoarding against their hoarding!"
North went on to slam the Labour Party's latest housing policies which includes a cap on private rents...
"Labour's eleventh-hour attempts to appeal to private tenants would cap the rate of increase rent - who wouldn't welcome even this small concession?" he asked "But it falls far short of what's needed to solve the desperate and snowballing housing crisis. TUSC calls for rent control which does what it says on the tin - controls the level of rent. The Labour proposal simply covers the rate at which rents increase within a three-year period.
"The housing crisis nationally is reflected in Salford where there are nearly 20,000 people on Salford Council's Housing Waiting List: I'm one of them" he added "The selling off of council housing, that started under Thatcher but which has continued under Labour and now this Government, has caused that crisis and TUSC would put an end to it by ending right to buy and building one million council homes nationally.
"The cost of that would be – according to the BBC - £100m" he said "We would pay for this by ending subsidies to private landlords who currently benefit from the lack of available affordable housing – total cost £26bn – and by contributing the remaining amount from part of the 20% levy we would place on the £519billion held by the country's 1000 richest people."
Sally Griffiths, TUSC local election candidate in the Eccles ward, slated the waiving of millions of pounds of planning fees by Salford Council for developers in the city...
"As the Labour Council lets developers off the hook for millions of pounds worth of planning contributions on housing schemes, people in Salford are suffering from a chronic housing shortage" she said "If elected, TUSC councillors would make the developers pay their way and ensure that the Council receives all the contributions that are due on developments that guarantee £millions profit. TUSC is the only party that will ensure investment in a mass programme of council housing building and refurbishment that our city so desperately needs."
Meanwhile, last Friday, TUSC held a rally outside Salford Civic Centre to mark the end of transport for individual disabled adults in the city. The high profile fight to retain the transport has been taken to the High Court and Appeal Court and the two disabled adults who started the proceedings are still waiting to see whether the case will be heard at the Supreme Court (see here).
In the meantime, one of those adults, Michael Robson, has been offered use of the Ring and Ride service with an escort or they will pay for taxis for him to go to and from the day centres. But the Council hasn't stated whether this will be open ended or not. Jennifer Barrett, who also took legal action, and everyone else who had their transport cut have been told to use their disability vehicles or make their own arrangements. These are considering further legal options.
At Friday's rally Norma Parkinson-Green, who has a disabled daughter and is standing for TUSC in Swinton North ward at the local election, said the cut had taken its toll on carers and those using the transport..."Shame on Salford Council saying that they support the most vulnerable people when they don't – this is obvious by what is happening today. I'm disgusted."
For a full list of candidates standing for all parties in the General and Local Election - click here