Human rights and equality for all
I got into politics because I cannot sit by and watch whilst people and issues are being ignored – I believe in taking action when you witness injustice.
I love Hackney – its diversity, community spirit and creative spaces – and I know that for people to live healthy lives, they need the conditions to do so. These conditions are created by political choices.
We need a new leadership which will make the right choices to tackle inequality and discrimination. Equality runs through everything I do and, if elected, it will be the very heart of my work, guiding my top priorities as Mayor.
Listening to residents’ experiences is at the heart of improving equality. I will continue the borough’s anti-racism work as a priority. I also want to tackle anti-blackness in the environmental movement and to protect the rights of the most marginalised groups including Hackney’s Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.
Discrimination takes all sorts of forms that need to be tackled at every level. Poverty is the worst offender: the current system traps marginalised communities in cycles of debt and health inequalities.
With the two-child benefit cap supported nationally by the Conservatives and Labour, changes to Universal Credit and sky-rocketing energy bills, it is time to reimagine what Hackney can do to counter the effects.
I have a plan to put diverse communities first, letting the voices of our most marginalised communities guide us forwards, to create a more equal and socially just Hackney.
Councillor Zoë Garbett has worked tirelessly to support the market traders on Ridley Road by helping to re-start the traders’ association for the market and by backing their campaign to Save Ridley Road. Here pictured with market trader Hemin Hamma.
Within a week of being elected, I was alerted to a police raid on food delivery workers in Dalston. I went there immediately and questioned the police activity. As events unfolded, I witnessed people being thrown to the ground by police – brutality which I strongly condemned. I am doing everything in my power to work with the police, community leaders and businesses in Dalston to re-establish the Dalston Police Ward Forum, to ensure that we never see a repeat of this disproportionate use of force. Since then, I have continued to meet with the “gig economy” riders and their union IWGB, calling for improvements to their working conditions and to establish a safe place for them to rest.]
As Mayor, I will do everything within my power to ensure that workers are respected. I will use the Council’s purchasing and procurement powers to make all contracts conditional on trade union recognition, occupational sick pay, above statutory pensions, equal training and employment rights regardless of sex, race, religion or belief, gender identity, sexual orientation or age, and without discriminating against those with disabilities. I will continue to support library staff.
Green Councillors Zoë Garbett and Alastair Binnie-Lubbock show their solidarity with striking library workers, calling on the Council to reverse the cuts and reinstate jobs.
Greens on Hackney Council have been championing the rights of underserved groups. In 2023 the Council passed the Green Group’s motion “In Solidarity with Striking Workers”, against the backdrop of regressive anti-union legislation by the national government.
Sadly, we still live in a society that does not value the contributions of women equally. Women face disproportionately lower pay which has left them exposed to ever increasing costs of living and childcare. Hackney Council needs to do more to level up opportunities, make the borough safer for women and supporting women so that everyone has the opportunity to thrive. I commit to having a zero-tolerance approach to misogyny and sexism. I will build on the great work with Hackney’s Night Time economy and work with more employers to tackle sexual harassment.
Mental health must become a top priority to ensure that residents, including our young people, badly let down by the current lack of mental health care provision, can recover and heal, remaining active and valued by their communities.
We know from evidence the root causes of mental health distress are highly correlated with poverty, inequality, racism and childhood adversities. Hackney Council should be linking its mental health agenda to its equity, diversity and inclusion agenda as well as its anti-poverty strategy. The Council should be actively investing in its anti-poverty strategy as part of improving its public mental health and prevention strategy and supporting practitioners and residents to make the links between these issues.
For years, I have been calling on Hackney Council to reduce council tax by 100% for the poorest in the borough, and this pledge was in our 2022 manifesto. While it has been good to see progress on this made by the council, I commit to exploring all avenues to a 100% council tax deduction for the poorest residents.
I am proud of what I’ve achieved as a councillor and leader of the Green Group. I will use a Mayoral win to go further and:
Hackney Council’s pension fund invests public money in companies around the globe. As Mayor, I will do everything in my power to ensure that our money does not fund corporations which extract polluting fossil fuels or which have been blacklisted by the UN for human rights abuses. I support Divest Hackney’s calls for the Council to drop its £35 million investment in fossil fuels and bring forward by at least 10 years its current aim for 100% divestment from all fossil fuel businesses.
In support of trans and non-binary residents, a bi-partisan Green & Labour motion “Supporting the Transgender Community” was passed in 2023. The motion calls for the recognition that trans rights are human rights and to consider LGBTIQA+ people’s needs within housing services.
Human rights and equality for all
We are at crisis point. My plan to take action.
Everyone deserves a safe, secure and affordable home
Giving residents more power over their lives, homes and communities.
Every resident has the right to fair and just policing
A future for every child and young person
Cleaner air and safe, healthy streets for every resident
A mission to build community wealth.
Green spaces benefit people and our planet
Rethinking our use of resources