The Green Party

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Letter to the editor


Dear Editor

I read with interest the letter sent in by Nikki Owens (Bike law is for you too – Feb 7th) regarding the lady who insists on riding her bike on the pavement whilst commuting to work. When Ms Owens and her friends challenged her about riding on the pavement outside Muschamp Primary, the lady replied, “the roads are are very dangerous.”

Whilst it is clear that she is breaking the law, I have some sympathy for the lady in question. The truth is the roads are dangerous. As well as being a major cause of death and injury, the intimidation caused by speeding traffic is a key factor dissuading more Londoners from getting on their bikes. It was no surprise that when the streets of central London were closed off, 38,000 cyclists participated in London Freewheel last September.

Thankfully there are improvements being made to the make roads safer for cyclists and pedestrians. This is mainly down to the Green Assembly members who have secured £62m for walking and cycling from the Mayors budget 2008/9 – up from £21m in 2004/05.

The increase includes £2m for cycle training. In addition, the Mayor will now provide boroughs with financial incentives to implement default 20 mile an hour speed limits in all residential areas – something the Green Party has been banging on about for decades.

Maybe Ms Owens should communicate these statistics to the lady cyclist – especially the £2m for cycle training and hopefully she will take notice, enrol on a course and gain the confidence to cycle on the roads.

Yours sincerely

Shasha Khan

Sutton Green Party


Photocall opportunity:
Siân Berry, the Green Party's candidate for London Mayor, will visit Croydon on Friday (22nd February) to launch the London Assembly campaign of Green Party candidate for Croydon and Sutton Shasha Khan.
Sutton residents could see their fuels bills slashed under a Green Mayor with Siân Berry's plan to provide free insulation for all homes that need it.

Shasha said:
"At a time when Sutton residents are feeling their household incomes squeezed due to fuel price hikes and increased inflation it is clear to me that we need our homes properly insulated in order to save on heating bills and to cut CO2 emissions. Sutton households have one of the worst ratings for energy efficiency in London (1). Now that we are required to provide Home Information Packs when putting our houses on the market Sutton homeowners could lose out when selling their house.
"There's no excuse in a 21st century city for having widespread fuel poverty, with people having to pay huge chunks of their income just trying to keep warm. There's no excuse for winter deaths of elderly Londoners who could have been saved by something as simple as loft insulation. And there's no excuse for government failure to cut CO2 emissions, or for their willingness to blame ordinary people instead of their own inaction.
"Under our plan, every single home in London that needs insulation will get it, free of charge. This will slash fuel bills, making London living more affordable and healthier. We'll also put a real dent in our carbon footprint and help to ensure a future for our kids."
Siân said:
"As oil and gas get scarcer, we can expect to see more and more rises in
the cost of heating. Londoners have an opportunity on 1 May to insulate
themselves from the cold and the cost by voting for my plan to insulate every
home that needs it for free

"40% of London's CO2 emissions come from housing, and more than 1 in 20
Londoners have to spend over 10 per cent of their income trying to keep warm.
Fuel poverty like that belongs in Dickens' London, not ours. That's why, as
Mayor, I would provide free insulation to every London home that needs it.

"Shasha will make a fantastic Assembly Member, and I know he will
tenaciously will push for important measures like this whether I win in May or
not. Green AMs have already used their power in City Hall to deliver free
insulation to some, but we need more Greens like Shasha to carry on and get free
insulation for all."

Londoners on benefits qualify for free insulation under measures introduced by the Green Assembly Members as a condition of their support for the Mayor's budget. Siân's scheme will remove this means testing, as well as introducing a comprehensive outreach programme to encourage take-up.
The Green AMs have also secured funding to pilot detailed help with paperwork for householders in Lewisham who wish to insulate their homes and generate their own power; Siân will extend this service city-wide, and make low-cost loans available to pay for small-scale renewable energy generation on homes and businesses.
Notes to editors
1. Energy efficiency ratings for private housing in London are listed in the table below. Houses are rated on a scale of 0 – 120, with higher numbers being more efficient. Most new homes receive a score between 75 and 100. Table source:

Original version of Green C4 Political Slot

Broadcast by Channel 4 Thursday 21st February, this original version contains details of important gains the Greens have made on fair wages in London, which was edited out of the broadcast by Channel 4.

Tags ,