Tom Pashby
Tom Pashby

In 2020, London will go to the polls to elect a new Mayor and members of the London Assembly. The London Green Party are now in the process of selecting their candidates for those elections. Bright Green is offering every candidate seeking selection an opportunity to tell our readers why they should be selected. One of these candidates is Tom Pashby, who has the following to say:

The most pressing issues facing London find their roots in the major crises playing out globally. Economic and social inequality, precarious jobs, housing and climate change are all challenges which the Green Party is uniquely positioned to address with Londoners.

Reckless, unsympathetic landlords, unscrupulous bosses and out of touch politicians who far too often find themselves cosying up to the very companies they should be holding to account. This toxic combination can make life in London miserable and worse for people who find themselves out of work and unable to afford accommodation.

Air pollution has been found to reach illegal levels in London, threatening our health, particularly for the most vulnerable people like children and those with respiratory conditions like me. Air pollution is an entirely self-inflicted problem and one which needs to be treated holistically. Furthermore, the causes are often the causes of climate change.

How I would tackle these issues as a London Assembly member

The UK is one of the most centralised democracies in Western Europe, with much of the agency to affect change held by the Government and the Prime Minister. However, one Green can change everything. Caroline Russell and Sian Berry have done incredible work as members of the London Assembly, campaigning for expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and successfully pressuring the Mayor to support the People’s Vote.

I’d love for Caroline and Sian to get re-elected and to help them continue their excellent work.

The policy priorities which I think should be given significant attention are Universal Basic Income, Unexplained Wealth Orders, rent controls, the London Renters Union, pedestrianisation of public spaces including streets, the ULEZ, electrification of London’s taxi fleet, the Frequent Flyer Levy and the Financial Transations Tax.

London, as a global city where millions live and work, desperately needs creative and brave politicians with ambitious political responses.

Why I would be a good Green Party candidate

I got into politics because I realised the establishment has failed to respond to the biggest policy challenge every facing humanity – climate change caused by unlimited economic growth on our finite planet. This led me to join the Green Party, found a Young Greens society at university, run for election at the district, borough, city and parliamentary level and I have committed my professional and political life to the pursuit of a sustainable society for the common good.

I’m currently an elected member of the Green Party Executive, serving in the Internal Communications portfolio and I’m the Press Officer for Southwark Green Party. I’ve also worked to support our colleagues like Molly Scott Cato in her successful European election campaign as well as for Bristol West and Caroline Lucas in Brighton Pavilion.

I grew up in south Hertfordshire and have worked mainly in central London since 2014. I now live in Southwark and work in the City.

I believe my commitment to Green values, and skills in communications and political strategy make me an excellent candidate for the London Assembly.

How I would make the Greens’ 2020 election campaign a success

I could increase the Greens’ vote share by working closely with our candidates and currently elected representatives who hold public office. I think our message about challenging ‘vapid centrism’ resonates with Londoners and we are well positioned to offer a radical, authentic alternative to the Labour and Tory establishment.

What we should prioritise in the 2020 election campaign

We should prioritise working with Londoners outside of our echo chamber on issues like air pollution, inequality and precarious work and housing. They are all issues which our policy platform is best placed to remedy.

We need to make sure less privileged, often under-represented voices are made louder, particularly in terms of our own candidates, membership and voter base.

Articles from all candidates can be found here.

Avatar

About Tom Pashby

Tom Pashby is an elected member of the Green Party Executive for England and Wales. They work in their day job in the pan-European communications team at EIT Climate-KIC and write regularly on politics. You can find previous work on tompashby.wordpress.com. Tom was the International Spokesperson for Young Greens of England and Wales. They write in a personal capacity.