The West Midlands is at the heart of the country's canal network, and local campaigner and Sandwell Lib Dem Membership Secretary, Nigel Fearn, would like to see better use made of these alternative routes. Some of the canals in Sandwell have already seen improvements made to them, thanks to the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership. This has seen some of the towpaths in Sandwell cleared to make it easier for people to use them for cycling or walking, and they offer a healthy, greener, and often more direct route into places. We encourage this trend and call for further improvements to make it safe for cyclists and walkers to use these routes. Nigel has been campaigning on this issue for several years.
Liberal Democrats agree that local councils and businesses need to do all they can to combat global warming. This means investing in public transport, buses, trams and railways, and consulting local people properly so they can have their say on plans. It is important to ensure residents contribute to the discussions, as well as enable them to travel more easily while reducing their impact on the environment. Here are the main concerns we have with how what should have been a sound scheme to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, has been mismanaged through poor communication.
The coronavirus (COVID19) is spread by respiratory droplets, and does not linger on porous surfaces, such as letters or parcels, says the post office. Here is our recommended advice for staying safe.
- Wear a mask when out shopping, or where mixing with strangers in an enclosed space.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Do not sign for letters or parcels. (Although they should not ask you to, according to their advice above.)
- Stay at home when you’re sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the bin.
- Where possible, use contactless payments, or paper bank notes rather than the new polymer ones.
Be kind. Phone friends and family if they have to self-isolate, or nervous about the continuing threat of the virus.
If you can, offer to help people who have difficulty getting out with shopping and other tasks. However, be sure to follow the NHS Advice on precautions you need to take, and maintain social distancing to protect yourself and others.
Sandwell Council is also providing support for its residents. Check their Coronavirus - Emergency help from the council page for details. There may also be a local community group in your area that is already offering help, such as the Great Barr Volunteers group.
Take our Coronavirus Survey
And finally, have your job been affected by the virus?
Has it made you appreciate local al shops and businesses more?
If it has, let us know by completing our brief Coronavirus Survey.
Sandwell LibDems joined other dignitaries, and veterans, at Sandwell's Holocaust Memorial Day Commemoration, at Highfields Memorial Gardens in West Bromwich, to stand together and remember those that were killed in death camps like Therisienstadt, Bergen-Belsen, and Auschwitz, as well as our own forces who gave their lives for their country.
With news that Sandwell's new hospital is going to now cost £300m more than budget, Sandwell LibDem's Treasurer, Bob Smith, went to have a look for himself.
Sandwell Liberal Democrats attended some of the Transport for West Midlands consultations in Great Barr. These were held to update residents on changes to the proposals for the Walsall to Great Barr section of their Sprint bus service. Unfortunately it did not include any further details of a proposed Park & Ride station near Junction 7 of the M6, and only included vague assertions regarding the Scott Arms junction. These proposals will cause chaos for residents and damage the environment. Contact us if you agree.
Happy holidays from your new team at Sandwell Liberal Democrats. We hope you all enjoy this special time of year and look forward to working to making your voice heard by Sandwell Council in the New Year.
Sadie, Rob, Bob, Nigel, Bertram, and Mark.
Members of our team out campaigning with Andy Graham, our candidate for West Bromwich East.
The independent Committee on Climate Change has recommended 2050 as the date the UK should be net-zero in all greenhouse gases. This is not ambitious enough, it should be much earlier. We should strive to achieve Net Zero much earlier, such as 2025 as Extinction Rebellion would like, or 2030 as others have suggested, and by 2045 at the very latest. 2045 would be radical, but also realistic date for the UK to achieve net-zero. As this is a Climate Emergency , Sandwell must do better than it has done to reduce emissions.
Sandwell Liberal Democrats increased their share of the vote in our area, and we remain committed to serving the people of Warley and West Bromwich. If you would like to help us scrutinise our inept Labour-run Council, please think about joining our team. Thank you to everyone who voted for us.
And now, a brief word from each of our candidates, along with the results for each constituency.