Our city region of Greater Brighton brings together the city council area with Worthing, Adur, Mid-Sussex, Crawley and Lewes (with Arun District poised to join soon) to focus on the economic needs which bind us together.
This week saw an interim report from our joint work to investigate the challenges facing businesses across the area, and begin to identify solutions. Similarly this week Labour launched our economic pledges to the city, which we will deliver if given majority control of the city on May 2.
We are committed to: Take a leadership role in bringing together the purchasing power of the council and other major institutions such as universities, schools and hospitals to keep money circulating in our local economy, and more equally share the wealth within our own city. Independently audit all outsourced services and bring services in-house if it will achieve a higher level of social value and improve the development and retention of a highly-skilled council workforce. Support and promote local businesses, especially small and medium sized enterprises, with a focus on cooperatives, community businesses and social enterprises to retain our resilience at a time of economic uncertainty.
Explore a voluntary tourist tax or a combined discount card for tourist attractions, local businesses and public transport. Use this extra revenue to clean up the city and fund facilities for homeless people. Work with businesses, universities, regional development organisations and other partners to showcase clean energy research and innovation. Work to ensure that women, BAME residents and other marginalised groups are supported to achieve their full potential. Become the leading UK city for ethical employment practices. Protect workers’ rights in the gig economy, end unpaid trial shifts, zero hours’ contracts and make the city a 100 per cent Living Wage employer. Grow our visitor economy by protecting the uniqueness of Brighton and Hove with our independent shops, cafés and bars, and our distinctive arts and culture.
The challenges our whole economy faces are real, but Labour will take action to protect lives and livelihoods for the many, not the few.