This past weekend, Lambeth Labour’s manifesto for the council elections was launched by Mayor Sadiq Khan, Chuka Umunna MP, Florence Eshalomi AM and Cllr Lib Peck. The manifesto puts the rights of Lambeth’s EU Citizens at its heart:
Fighting for the rights of EU citizens: We’re proud that 79% of Lambeth residents voted to remain in the European Union. We’ve lobbied the government to protect the rights of over 30,000 European citizens in Lambeth. Our friends and neighbours shouldn’t be treated as a bargaining chip – but sadly the Conservatives both nationally and locally refuse to support a guarantee of their rights.
A re-elected Labour council will continue fighting against the Conservative government’s disastrous Hard Brexit.
We’ll fight for the rights of EU citizens, and membership of the single market and customs union.
As this notes, Lambeth is home to over 30,000 EU citizens, other than UK and Irish citizens, and 1 in 8 of residents in Brixton Hill are EU citizens, including many of Lambeth’s important Portuguese community and Latin Americans who hold Spanish passports.
At a recent Lambeth Council meeting, Brixton Hill councillor Martin Tiedemann was one of the Labour councillors proposing a motion to protect EU Nationals. In his speech he spoke of the uncertainty still faced by many residents as Brexit is unveiled, including his own father, a German National who has lived in the UK for almost fifty years yet faces an uncertain and expensive future.
The Mayor of London is consulting on his plans to improve air quality in London – with proposals that directly affect Brixton Hill.
From next year the Mayor is already introducing an Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) for central London, forcing drivers of the dirtiest vehicles to pay a surcharge that will hopefully deter them from driving in central London or, better still, incentivise them to replace their vehicles with cleaner ones. This is a year earlier than originally pledged.
Now the Mayor is proposing tougher standards for the whole of London to come in by 2020 – while not as tough as the ULEZ, it will mean all of London will see benefits by reducing the number of polluting vehicles coming into the city. The proposals are projected to lead to a 30% reduction in NOx levels in inner London including our area by 2021.
Sadiq Khan is also proposing to extend the ULEZ to the South Circular, meaning that it would cover the whole of Brixton Hill. Light vehicles which do not meet these standards would need to pay a daily charge of £12.50 in order to drive in the ULEZ. This is very welcome news and we urge residents to respond to the survey to signal support for these plans so that Brixton Hill air can improve.
The current proposal is for the extension to cover Brixton Hill to start in October 2021. In our response to the consultation, Brixton Hill’s Labour councillors have said that we want the extension to come in earlier and not wait over three years for these crucial measures that could be improving health and quality of life and reducing pollution around our schools and homes.
You can read the whole plans here. To have your say, you must do so by 28 February 2018 using the online survey.
Cllr Martin Tiedemann has written to Sadiq Khan regarding dangerous junctions on the A23 Brixton Hill following another accident last month that has left a cyclist with serious injuries.
Three years ago, Cllr Tiedemann wrote to the previous Mayor, highlighting the junctions of Brixton Hill with Brixton Water Lane/Trent Road/Lambert Road/Josephine Avenue. These junctions, which comprise part of London Cycle Network Route 25, were originally prioritised for action but were subsequently dropped from Boris Johnson’s plans. Now, with a new Mayor and further accidents, Brixton Hill’s councillors are calling for urgent action. Continue reading