A photo of Sian Berry

My aim is simple: I hope everyone who reads this works in a practical way to elect Siân Berry as MP for Brighton Pavilion. England currently has one Green Party MP, Caroline Lucas. She is standing down which, while disappointing, is unsurprising. The workload of being a single Green MP is massive I can appreciate why Caroline wants a break.

The loss of the UK’s one Green member of the House of Commons would be a tragedy. I am an ex-Green Party member, I think there is a lot more to politics than elections, and the party is far from perfect. Yet I don’t think anyone on the left can honestly or persuasively argue that the loss of a Green MP would have a positive effect on an increasingly toxic and right wing political landscape.

Labour, at present, look likely to win by a landslide, but their policies are increasingly right wing, from immigration controls to opposition to a ceasefire in Gaza, to putting austerity ahead of funding a green new deal, they look like a poor choice. None of Britain’s fundamental problems of environmental protection, social justice or a decaying NHS look likely to be fixed by Starmer and such dull right wing acolytes as Wes Streeting or Rachel Reeves.

Indeed, the danger is that a lacklustre Labour government will fuel an upsurge in the far right. Wherever there are left alternatives to Labour and the Tories within striking distance of parliament, they should be supported.

By support, I mean more than a like on social media, or even a written piece like this. Elections are fought and won on the ground, people are always needed to canvass, leaflet and, above all, help get the vote out on election day.

The election of Sian Berry is neither a certainty nor an impossibility; the Greens surely have a good chance in a seat where they have won four previous general elections. Having worked with Sian in the past, I am enthusiastic about supporting her, as an effective and radical figure. Sian, whose long experience as a former Green Party Principal Speaker, Green Party co-leader and a member of the  London Assembly, would make a brilliant MP. Yet with Labour climbing in the polls, victory is not assured for a Green candidate.

Politics is too often a consumer sport. Like shopping, we buy the party or candidate with the policies we like best. To further the very difficult task of transforming society in a positive direction, we need to take a more active approach, actively working to elect good candidates. Instead of being passive political consumers, we need to work with others to produce a better future.

Electing a Green MP would provide a strong and vital voice at Westminster. If nothing else, the climate crisis demands that we need strong green voices in parliament.

You can donate to the campaign here and there are regular sessions for volunteers to help in the constituency, to which you can sign up to here. I am going to work to elect Sian – please join me. There are over 600 constituencies in Britain, others look good for Greens or alternative candidates on the left to win, but whatever you do where you live, please help re-elect a Green MP for Brighton Pavilion.

Derek Wall teaches political economy at Goldsmiths and is a former Principal Speaker for the Green Party of England and Wales. He wrote ‘Elinor Ostrom’s Rules for Radicals’ published by Pluto.

PS. We hope you enjoyed this article. Bright Green has got big plans for the future to publish many more articles like this. You can help make that happen. Please donate to Bright Green now donate to Bright Green now.