Our new Lib Dem Leader

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Tameside Lib Dems have welcomed the election of Tim Farron, MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale, as the new leader of the Liberal Democrats.

Tim Farron said that under his leadership, the party would oppose the cuts to tax credits and other benefits in the Conservative’s budget and push for greater spending on infrastructure such as transport and broadband.

At his first speech as leader, Tim said “If you care about human rights join us. If you think you shouldn’t have your emails snooped on join us. ‎If you think everyone deserves a decent home join us.” You can watch Tim’s inspirational speech here.

Carly Hicks, who stood for the Lib Dems in Ashton-under-Lyne in May, said, “These principles are at the heart of what drives the Liberal Democrats, our members and activists. More than ever Britain needs a party that will stand up for what we believe in, so we’re continuing our fightback and I’m asking local residents to be part of it.”

There has never been a more important time to join the party.

Across the Country since the General Election 17,000 people have joined the party. Locally we have been joined by dozens of new activists and members this year, including a large number since it was announced that Tim Farron was elected. The Liberal Democrats have also seen stunning election victories at local council by-elections across the UK, beating both Labour and the Conservatives.

Join us here

Sal Brinton’s message for Ramadan 2015

Liberal Democrat Party President Sal Brinton has recorded the following message for Ramadan 2015.

As-salamu alaykum.

On behalf of the Liberal Democrats, I am delighted to send this message to Muslims in the UK and across the world who are observing the holy month of Ramadan.

Ramadan is a time for self-reflection and sharing; of fasting and prayer. It is a time for renewing faith and strengthening the bonds between family and friends.

At this important time in the Islamic calendar, we are reminded particularly of the value of service of British Muslims, so I want to thank you all for the valuable contribution you make, across British society and beyond, both at Ramadan and throughout the whole year.

So I would like to wish everyone harmony, happiness and unity during this special time.

May your Ramadan bring peace and blessings.

Ramadan Mubarak.

Our Agenda for Change

manifesto-2015-coverWhen Liberal Democrats launched our 2010 General Election manifesto, few people expected that many of the policies it contained would be implemented by the next Government. But that’s what happened: three quarters of those policies formed the backbone of the Coalition’s programme.

In Government, Liberal Democrats delivered on front-page commitments like raising the Income Tax threshold and investing in the poorest schoolchildren through the Pupil Premium.

But our mission has only just begun. You can’t build the future we want in just five years.

For the first time, this is a Liberal Democrat manifesto that builds on a record of policies delivered in national government.

That’s why, in Government for the next five years, Liberal Democrats will continue to build a stronger economy and a fairer society with opportunity for everyone. This manifesto sets out how.

Read it here

‘Help to Rent’ scheme getting young workers a home

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The Liberal Democrats announced plans today for a new Help to Rent scheme targeting support at young working adults who still live with their parents but want to move out and rent their own place. 

Research shows that around two million young working adults – sometimes dubbed the ‘boomerang generation’ or ‘clipped wing generation’ – still live with their parents despite being in paid work. Rising rental costs mean they can’t afford the cash needed for a tenancy deposit or the one-to-two month’s rent expected in advance by some landlords unless they have financial help from their parents or friends. The knock-on effect of having young working adults in the family home can also lead to parents having to upsize or delay the downsizing of family homes to accommodate older children, thereby reducing the availability of family homes.

Under the ‘Help to Rent’ scheme, young working people in England will be able to borrow up to £1,500 (£2,000 in London) from the Government to go towards their tenancy deposit. To be eligible, tenants would need to be between 18-30 years old, in paid employment and not be home owners or seeking social housing tenancy. Loans could be paid over one or two years and once paid off, could be used for future rental properties.

Launching the innovative Help to Rent scheme, Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Liberal Democrats Nick Clegg said:

“Increasingly we see young people stuck in the family home as they can’t afford the upfront costs of a deposit to rent a property despite having a paid job.

“It’s simply unfair that thousands of hard-working young people still have to live in the same bedroom they lived in when children.

“When you get your own job, you want to stand on your own two feet, have your own space, and not have to rely on the bank of mum and dad.

“Our Help to Rent scheme removes this barrier to young people’s independence, providing access to up to £2,000 towards their tenancy deposit so they can fly the nest and rent their own space.”

Help to Rent adds to the suite of Liberal Democrat housing proposals aimed at young people, including a ‘Rent to Own’ scheme to help first-time buyers get on the property ladder by renting their way to ownership, and proposals to build 300,000 new homes a year.