Tony Janio: I will stand up for the views of our diverse city

Tony Janio
Tony Janio

I write this column following an election where few could have predicted the result, let alone the pollsters who have been less than reliable in recent years.

The people spoke last Thursday, but in a strange language that would challenge Google Translate to decipher, and I feel that all of us in the ‘political bubble’ should take some time to stop and consider the results before rushing to action.

National political parties are confused and, not knowing what the British public really wants, life will continue, as it should - much as it did before the election. During this time it is up to local politicians to take our responsibilities seriously and get on with working hard for residents and doing what is best for the city.

As a city with such celebrated diversity, known for its commitment to LGBT rights, I understand the concerns raised by some regarding the national Conservative Party’s future links with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

I would reiterate the assurances made by the Conservative Party that any working relationship with the DUP would be strictly on a confidence and supply basis, which is different from a full-blown coalition as it would not involve an agreed five-year programme of policies or the DUP necessarily holding any ministerial cabinet positions.

It is also important to note that social policy, regarding such issues as same sex marriage, LGBT rights etc, are devolved to the Northern Ireland Assembly in Stormont and should therefore not be under any consideration in terms of altering current or hampering future national policies.

As said in a previous article, sometimes it is necessary to work with people that share different values, as I have done over many years with the Greens and Labour in Brighton and Hove. This does not mean, however, that we necessarily adopt the views and principles of those we work with during these times. I believe the same applies in this case.

If for any reason I am wrong in this regard, I will of course stand up for the views of our city and its gloriously diverse residents.

Tony Janio is the leader of the Conservatives on Brighton & Hove City Council.