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We are a band of dedicated individuals pledged to keep liberal, democratic values flourishing locally, nationally and internationally; to promote greater equality, environmentalism and to fight for the people of Dudley, Stourbridge and Halesowen. We care about community-based local politics, and we work hard to get individual Liberal Democrats elected to all levels of Government, with a focus on Dudley Council especially. Our aim is to keep in touch with the local communities through residents' surveys and by distributing our local "Focus" leaflets, not just at election time but all year round.

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  • Article: Oct 2, 2021

    October is Black History Month - an opportunity to celebrate the enormous contributions that Black people have made across our country.

    From Mary Prince to Paul Stephenson, so many Black pioneers have transformed our society's cultural and political landscapes. We owe a great debt to everything they have achieved.

  • Article: Oct 1, 2021

    With COP just weeks away, the Prime Minister has been urging countries to announce meaningful cuts to emissions.

    But his speech hides something entirely different. His Government are failing to make progress on cutting emissions and are instead going backwards.

    1. Tree planting humiliation


    In the 2019 election the Conservatives promised to plant 30,000 hectares of trees a year by 2024. But rather than increasing they're actually going backwards.

  • Article: Oct 1, 2021

    Yesterday, there were 6 local council by-elections. Here are the results so far! We are super happy to announce a successful gain from the Conservatives in the Peak District and made some excellent progress in Sunderland and West Suffolk!

    We have always been the party of communities and we're so proud of our local activists standing up for people across the country!

  • Article: Sep 29, 2021
    By David Chalmers

    The Liberal Democrat Conference on the Future of Europe

    Dear member

    I hope you managed to have a break of some kind this summer and are now, as we head into the autumn, refreshed and ready for our conference and debating season. For those of us for whom Europe is still the most defining issue of our time - and I suspect that as a member of the Lib Dem European Group (LDEG) that includes yourself - the next couple of months are going to be very exciting. You are being offered the opportunity to have your say.

  • Article: Sep 29, 2021

    The spring 2021 conference instructed the FPC to 'carry out a programme of work, including consulting
    widely within the party, to determine the best possible future framework for the UK-EU relationship across
    all policy areas, with the aims of: (a) demonstrating the benefits to UK citizens and businesses of a much
    closer relationship compared to the government's inadequate measures; (b) recommending roadmaps for
    the UK to rejoin the Customs Union, Single Market and other EU agencies and programmes as appropriate;
    and (c) maximising public support for eventual UK membership of the EU.'
    The FPC has appointed a small group, chaired by Duncan Brack and including representatives of the
    parliamentary party, the Federal International Relations Committee and the Liberal Democrat European
    Group, to implement the conference instruction. We have decided to approach our task through a series of
    conference motions and papers rather than one big one. Since we cannot realistically cover every possible
    relevant topic through conference motions, we are also encouraging our parliamentary spokespeople to
    put forward proposals for closer and stronger relationships with the EU in their spokespersonship areas.
    We organised a consultation session at conference in September, and we are collaborating with the Liberal
    Democrat European Group in organising these regional events, in order to give party members a chance to
    tell us what they think are the priority policy areas we should address, what the possible solutions within
    each area are, and the messages the party should use in promoting closer cooperation between the UK and
    EU. This is our initial list of key topics -

    Cultural, artistic and educational ties
    We thought this was a good topic to begin with, so the FPC submitted a motion to conference on
    'Rebuilding our Cultural, Artistic and Educational Ties with Europe'. The motion called, among other things,
    for the UK to rejoin the Erasmus Plus scheme, to establish a European cultural fund and to improve the
    Youth Mobility Scheme. It was passed without opposition.

    Trade
    The key topic is obviously the trading relationship between the UK and EU. For next year's spring
    conference we are planning a motion on Single Market and Customs Union membership. This is such a
    complex area, covering, among other things, freedom of movement, social, health and environmental
    standards and the Northern Ireland Protocol, that we'll be accompanying it with a short paper, to be
    published alongside the conference agenda. There is no doubt about the party's commitment to rejoining
    the Single Market and Customs Union - that was made clear at spring conference this year- but there are
    many issues to consider about the practicalities, the phasing and the impacts. Among other things, this
    should provide at least partial solutions to the recent supply-chain problems, including shortages of HGV
    drivers and staff in the transport, farming, food and catering and care sectors.

    Climate change and energy
    The FPC's policy paper on carbon pricing, which was approved by conference, includes the proposal to link
    the UK Emissions Trading Scheme with the EU ETS, thus increasing the effectiveness of emissions trading;
    and rejoining the EU ETS would be a requirement of UK entry to the EU in any case. Other potential areas
    for cooperation include working together with the EU in international climate negotiations; meeting
    emissions reduction targets jointly with the EU (in the same way as EEA countries do); and promoting
    greater interconnection with EU energy networks.

    Natural environment
    Potential areas for collaboration include re-adopting EU standards in areas such as pollution control, water,
    air, chemicals, biodiversity, waste, genetically modified organisms and environmental impact assessment
    (most of this would be required under Single Market membership in any case, but this approach could be
    adopted in advance); working with the EU on its new measures to require businesses to protect the
    environment, and human and labour rights, in their supply chains; and working together with the EU in
    international biodiversity negotiations.

    Rights of EU citizens in the UK and UK citizens in the EU
    This topic covers guaranteeing EU citizens' rights in law, including physical proof of settled status;
    automatic upgrading for those with pre-settled status; strengthening the Independent Monitoring
    Authority; and reiterating our commitment to the European Social Charter. We could also urge the UK
    government to ensure that EU member state governments are upholding the rights of UK citizens.

    Crime
    Issues under this heading include police and security cooperation, including access to the Schengen
    Information System (information-sharing for security and border management); rejoining Europol and
    Eurojust and the European Arrest Warrant; and arrangements for the reciprocal nature of judgements, for
    example under the Lugano Convention, which clarifies which national courts have jurisdiction in crossborder
    civil and commercial disputes and ensures that judgments taken in such disputes can be enforced
    across borders.

    Science
    Key aspects include alignment and co-operation as far as possible with EU science programmes such as
    Horizon Europe; participation in satellite systems including Galileo, EGNOS (the pan-European satellite
    navigation system) and Copernicus (the EU's Earth observation programme); participation in Euratom; and
    measures to improve access for EU nationals to UK academic institutions.

    Health
    Topics include workforce issues such as recognition of professional qualifications, scrapping the
    Immigration Health Surcharge, improving visa routes; agreement on health insurance cards (EHIC/GHIC)
    with EEA member states; cooperation with the European Medicines Agency; and the possibility of joint
    pandemic preparedness exercises between UK and EU in the future.

    Foreign affairs, security and development
    This heading covers a wide range of issues, including cooperation over security challenges such as those
    posed by Russia or China; the impacts and possible strategies towards unstable regions such as Afghanistan
    or the Middle East; and cooperation over development challenges, including Covid vaccination and climate
    finance. Other possibilities include coordinated use of 'Magnitsky sanctions' targeted on individuals
    responsible for human rights violations or corruption; and the creation of a shared forum for European
    states to address foreign and defence policy issues.

    Comments on this paper are welcome, either in person at the LDEG regional events and conference on 30
    October, or by email to policy.consultations@libdems.org.uk.

  • Article: Sep 29, 2021

    Questions 1-3 are on a similar topic so have been grouped together, they were also answered orally during Conference.

    Q1. Submitted by Prue Bray

    I like the disciplinary proposals, but the system still does not deal satisfactorily with complaints about councillors. Will you discuss this with local government representatives?

  • Ed Davey MP at conference
    Article: Sep 29, 2021

    It was another action packed 4-days at conference with a wide array of debates, diverse fringe and training sessions at conference. These included the Uighur motion that was passed with only 2 objectors, an emergency trade motion "Solving the Supply Chain Crisis" proposed by Sarah Olney MP and drafted by CLD executive member, Paul Reynolds (see below), and a Race Equality amendment to the Strategy motion drafted by LDCRE (LibDem Campaign for Race Equality) and supported by CLDs.

    The party launched a new China focus group within FIRC (Federal International Relations Committee) and they hosted a fringe event on China with guest speakers including MEPs Reinhard Butikofer and Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Baroness Julie Smith and former diplomat and Chair of FIRC, George Cunningham. The lawyers group, Rights Liberties and Justice held a fringe entitled "Human Rights Challenges for the UK Foreign Policy" ably chaired by James Sandbach, with panellists Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, chair of the Uighur Tribunal and Michael Marrett-Crosby, speaking on the deteriorating situation in Myanmar. Young Liberal's foreign affairs spokesperson, Peter Douglas Banks, summated on the discussions.

    As in previous years Chinese Libdems had a virtual stall at the Conference Exhibition where we could share with anyone interested about our vision, aims and objectives, campaigning work as well as support for candidates. We were pleased to have welcomed members from other groups such as Young Liberals, LibDems Abroad as well as The Patchwork Foundation.

    In the Leader's speech, Ed invoked the words of our former leader Paddy Ashdown:
    "Our role," Paddy said, "is to be the catalyst, the gathering point for a broader movement dedicated to winning the battle of ideas which will give Britain an electable alternative to Conservative government."

    Ed stressed the key messages and solutions provided by the LibDems: to restore the British fair deal, starting with parents and children, a catch-up fund of £15 billion for school children, extensive new measures to turbo-charge education and called for more support for small businesses.

  • Colley Gate
    Article: Sep 28, 2021

    Dudley Council is proposing that 14 houses be built on 116-120 Colley Gate, despite the site being home to three thriving businesses.

    The site, identified within the Black Country Plan, sits next to the infamous abandoned row of shops in Colley Gate, which has not been listed within the Black Country Plan at all.

  • Article: Sep 27, 2021

    Your email open rates are about go up - and this is a problem (sorry!)

    Yesterday, Apple released iOS15, the latest version of their operating system for iPhones and iPads.

    In that is a new feature called "Mail Privacy Protection". (MPP)

    It's a very sensible and reasonable change that will improve your online experience and privacy and is something to be welcomed.

  • Article: Sep 23, 2021

    In our new film, Ed Davey sets out a vision for a fair deal for future generations.

    Boris Johnson's failure to defend children's education meant that his Government spent the same amount in one month on Eat Out To Help Out as in a whole year for our children's school catch-up.

    We're offering a new bulk-buy deal for England on digital advertising to show the film to voters in your area.