Johann Beckford

My name is Johann Beckford, and I am standing to be the Young Greens’ next Activist Training and Political Education Officer.

I joined the Green Party in 2014 as I saw it as the clear anti-austerity, internationalist, and pro-migration party. Crucially, the Greens continue to be the only party that understand that to tackle social, racial and climate injustice, we must transform our economy beyond recognition, tackling inequality in a radical way and handing wealth and power back to the many.

Since I joined, I have campaigned for the Greens in local, general, and European elections, including for my local friends and colleagues Magid Magid, Rebecca Mulvaney and Councillor Martin Phipps. For the last two years, I have been one of two Young Greens Coordinators for Sheffield Green Party. I now want to translate that Executive Committee experience to the Young Greens on a national basis.

As I have become increasingly involved in the Green Party, I have seen that the excitement, ideas and energy within the party are coming from Young Greens. I have been inspired by the fantastic political education talks delivered by the Young Greens Executive over the last year and I want to continue to develop this crucial area for our party.

This motivated me to put myself forward as I believe we can create a new generation of activists equipped with the skills, knowledge and passion to become leaders inside and outside of the party.

As your Activist Training and Political Education Officer, I would work to:

  • Develop elections skills sessions, furthering the crucial work of making the Young Greens a force during election time.
  • Develop campaigns skills sessions for Young Greens in universities, cities and regions across the country, not just during elections.
  • Build upon the fantastic Young Greens political education sessions and further develop links with activists within the wider green movement.
  • Revive the Young Greens book club.
  • Deliver an inspiring 30 under 30 scheme to train up some of our most promising activists.
  • Listen to and co-produce activist training with our membership that meets our collective needs.

I believe passionately that this position on the Young Greens Executive is crucial to the Young Greens in that it will help to shape a vision for what we are as a party. I see the Young Greens as a radical, organised, member-led youth-wing that pushes the Green Party to be better.

This means putting forward an unapologetically eco-socialist message (whilst recognising all the influences over Green politics) that criticises the growth maximising structures of capitalism that drive our climate and ecological emergencies. It means creating an intersectional movement that stands in solidarity with refugees and migrants and supports trans rights and the rights of all marginalised groups.

The only way to achieve this vision is by mobilising and listening to our membership. I will play a collaborative role on the Executive, working with the other fantastic candidates to live up to the high bar Rosie, Lily and the team have set for us.

This article is part of a series from candidates standing in this year’s elections to the Young Greens of England and Wales Executive Committee. You can find all the articles in the series here. Voting is open in the Young Greens elections from July 3 to July 18. 

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