On Monday 10th April Will Patterson, of the Green Party revealed their Mayoral manifesto detailing the requirement for better housing, transport and air quality across Greater Manchester.
The Green Party’s Mayoral candidate has put forward a radical plan to tackle Greater Manchester’s housing crisis.
The five step plan aims to tackle homelessness, to protect renters and to bring empty homes back in to use.
Will Patterson, Green Party candidate for Greater Manchester Mayor, announced a plan to re-open homeless shelters that closed in 2015, but added that simply giving people a bed for the night isn’t good enough.
Patterson said, “People who have fallen on hard times need security and stability. The current model expects homeless people with substance misuse issues or mental health problems to show improvement before they become eligible for housing, and this model is failing.
“I also want to improve conditions for people who are renting – creating a Greater Manchester Renters’ Union to support tenants and campaign for renters’ rights.”
Patterson announced the policies at a Manifesto Launch Party on Monday evening at a well-attended launch in Manchester venue TwentyTwentyTwo.
The event took a radical departure from the normal stage-managed press events as it was open to the public and live-streamed on Facebook, with manifesto policies tweeted live throughout the event on Twitter.
Patterson says that this is part of a wider attempt to re-engage the public in democracy. “People feel completely
disconnected from politics. We’re trying to make politics accessible. With the option of coming along in person, watching live from home, or following the event on Twitter, and with people able to catch up in their own time, we think we have taken a big step towards open democracy.”
Patterson’s plans for engaging the public in local democracy are echoed in his policy to create Citizens’ Forums, where local residents can take part in debates on issues that directly concern them and get their voices heard by those in power.
Addressing the serious democratic deficit of George Osborne’s “Devolution Agreement”, the Green Party candidate called for the creation of a Greater Manchester Assembly, modelled on the London Assembly which is elected under the Proportional Representation voting system and holds the mayor to account.
The manifesto launch also included ambitious ideas for public transport, with plans to extend the Metrolink Network through an “Outer Circle” connecting the towns of Greater Manchester, and through new lines to connect Bolton, Stockport and Wigan to the network.
The full manifesto is available online at will4greenmayor.greenparty.org.uk.