Interview with Daniel Keeling – Publications Co-ordinator candidate for GPEx
Throughout August, members of the Green Party for England & Wales will be voting to elect members of the next Green Party Executive (GPEx). In all, members will vote to determine which representatives will carry out eleven different roles – including that of leader and deputy leader. There is also a ballot to determine who will be the party’s third member in the House of Lords should the party be asked to put forward another peer.
Daniel Keeling (former co-chair of the Young Greens’ Senate, and current chair of the Newham Green Party), is standing for the role of publications co-ordinator. Next month, he will face Jack Lenox (former GPEx internal communicators co-ordinator), and Julia Lagoutte (co-host of the Green Big Politics Podcast, and writer & editor for the Green European Journal), in the running for the role.
We asked each of the candidates five questions on their background and what they would seek to achieve on GPEx. Here are Danny’s responses.
What do you think are the main challenges currently facing the Green Party, and how would you work to overcome them?
We have become known as a single-issue party. The climate crisis will always be the most important issue for us, but to be taken seriously as a party we must gain trust in our entire platform. Only then can we win seats at every level and affect the change we all want to see.
As publications co-ordinator I would make sure that our party takes advantage of the new media platforms we have available to us. Our voice needs to be heard in every corner of the internet. I will do this by consulting with the many experts in the party who have experience in specific media to help push our policies and messaging on all media outlets.
We all know that our party has an issue with transphobia. This needs tackling head on with a full investigation into the systemic transphobia in the party. We need to root out those in our party that are causing the trans community to turn away from the party. We are losing far too many members of our LGBTQIA+, and allies to the Liberal Democrats, and this needs to end now.
Our GPEx committee is not diverse and diversity needs to be a priority for proper debate and discussion. One major area I see in our previous GPEx committees is the lack of representation for the Young Greens. They are the single largest group within the party. They give our party so much, from our most active campaigners, to those who push out our message on social media, to those who design all our leaflets. The Young Greens are more than just a liberation group within our party, they are the youth wing and as such I believe they should have a seat round the GPEx table.
What skills do you bring that would make you an effective member of the executive?
I am patient and a listener (even to those with different opinions to mine!) Through being able to listen to others and understand where they are coming from, we can influence and change opinions. I grew up in a Tory safe seat and every time I visit, I leave, converting at least 2 people to Green Party membership. It is by understanding why we have a difference in opinion that we can hold meaningful discussion on why change needs to happen.
I understand things aren’t instant and I am a realist rather than an optimist. I think this is important when it comes to our party’s politics as it is always a struggle, but we don’t settle for second best – that’s what being a Green is all about.
What experience do you have in publications?
At the age of 21 I co-founded a print publication that sold in 28 countries. From there, I was made Creative Director of two other publications and I started giving lectures at the University of the Arts in London on the topic of publishing and printing.
Publication comes in many forms and is mainly about marketing. I have worked in branding and marketing for many clients, building on my degree in Art and Design. This is my greatest strength.
Social media plays a large part in what we do, and by ensuring we are in the correct media outlets we can ensure the best reach. I built my first publication’s Twitter account to 80,000 followers and it’s through making the right partnerships and using the right outlets that we can get our message across to mass audiences.
What would be your key priorities as publications coordinator?
- Give liberation and affiliated groups a voice through media platforms to ensure we have diversity in our media coverage. This includes but is not limited to the Young Greens, Greens of Colour and LGBTQIA+ Greens.
- Local Parties should have access to resources when required, and the training to use these resources. Currently our back-end system and resources are hard to find or are of lower quality and this needs to change.
- Resources and templates should be accessible for all levels whether that is a PowerPoint template or an InDesign one. Furthermore, they must be of quality and be uniform. If the local party cannot create the content, then GPHQ should be utilising the staff members to batch create campaign items for those with limited capabilities.
- I would ensure Green World never gets put into print again. We speak about our biggest issue being a climate emergency and then creating a print publication enters the discussion. This is counterproductive so instead we should make it a digital publication downloadable to platforms.
- A wider program of training and information needs to be given out to regional and local parties. We have many experts and competent individuals in the party to assist in doing this. My main areas of concern are to ensure that all regional and local parties know how to approach press, media outlets and look outside of the box for local podcasts, community platforms and anything else that is of importance in their areas.
How would you improve Green World?
Green World needs a major boost in its circulation. We need to work with affiliations, guest writers and content that is on brand but has a wider appeal to ensure this happens.
The publication should be the place to come for things like live streaming of conference, and at the conference itself. It should also be visible to the membership to know where they should go for media content.
Green World should work with the campaigns team to ensure we push the right campaigns out to membership so, in turn, the local and regional parties all become more uniform and hard-hitting with our campaigns.
This interview is part of a series with each of the candidates in this year’s GPEx elections. You can find Bright Green’s full coverage of the elections here.
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