All our yesterdays shame we can’t turn back the clock on Mr Stewart

The vision and experience to change Salford for the better

Labour’s candidate for directly-elected Mayor of Salford, Iain Stewart, opens his case, in the second of the Guardian Northerner‘s hustings

SALFORD is a great city with a proud history and the election of the Mayor on May 3 is vitally important for its future.

For the first time people will be voting for and electing an executive city Mayor who will have the responsibility of running the city for the next four years. This is not the same sort of person as the ceremonial mayor with the gold chain.

The election takes place at a time when hard-working families are finding it hard to make ends meet. The cost of living keeps rising and at the same time this Tory-led government is cutting vital services to the elderly and vulnerable as well as police, fire and health services. These are frontline services we all depend on.

I have lived in Salford for 50 years. I have raised my family here; this is where my roots are. Salford is a great city and we have a proud history. But I recognise the fact that it has to change. We need to bring more investment into the city and create local employment while providing quality, affordable, value-for-money services.

We also need to ensure that the vital services that help the elderly, the vulnerable and our children are protected. And we need to provide high quality educational facilities that will equip our citizens for the 21st century.

Salford needs a strong voice that will stand up for our city, someone who is prepared to take on the government and fight for a fair deal for our area. It is simply not acceptable that Salford should lose investment because money is diverted by the Tories to the south.

If elected, I promise that I will work with employers, local communities, workers, other organisations and educational services to bring the resources we need into the city. As someone who served as MP for Eccles, I have a proven track record of winning investment and working with businesses to create jobs.

The Tories and Lib Dems are cutting too far and too fast and people in Salford are paying a heavy price. This Tory-led government can’t claim ‘we are all in this together’ and at the same time give a £40,000 tax break to millionaires, while five million pensioners are hit by a ‘Granny Tax’ in order to balance the books.

Salford needs someone who will stand up for our neighbourhoods, not a Tory-LibDem cheerleader who will support every government cut. I believe that I have the experience and the commitment to deliver the change that Salford needs.

If elected Mayor I promise to work for the people of Salford in these tough times to ensure a more positive future for our city. Together we can change this city for the better.

Here are my pledges to the people of Salford:

• I will work hard and listen to your views

• I will always put the residents of Salford first

• I will bring regeneration and jobs into our city

• I will demand a better deal for Salford from this Tory-led government

• I will ensure that Salford provides efficient, value for money services

One article i read today worries me what’s next.

One of the pictures shows a mattress on  the floor of a breeze-block shack, with a bucket acting as a toilet, The resident’s paltry possessions are seen on metal shelves lined with newspaper.

The builder, who was told the occupant is an Eastern European immigrant who sells scrap metal, told the Daily Star Sunday: ‘It beggars belief that someone can be so desperate that they would live like this.  ‘Surely his life back home can’t have been any worse than sleeping on a mattress in a breeze-block shack in Bradford. I’m told he is paying £20 a week for this.

The Stark reality is we face a social class cleansing scheme in London where people are being forced out under the Tories,a chronic Job and housing shortage, an increase in crime,pressure on our schools and services and the gates are being left open. And the answers from Labour and the Tories? Nothing…

The real Labour?

Ed Miliband is refusing to reveal Labour’s real plans for government in case they scare off voters, a senior Left-wing figure has claimed.

Andrew Harrop, general secretary of the Fabian Society, a think tank with close links to Labour, lifted the lid on the row convulsing the party.

His comments will lead to speculation Labour is hiding even more radical policies from voters ahead of the General Election