I have many years of experience as a benefits and debt adviser, helping people at society’s sharp end to defend themselves against the punishments often imposed for not being born with money. I am now Unite convenor at St Mungo’s, advocating individually for workers experiencing bullying and discrimination, and collectively for wages that keep up with inflation. Membership of the shop has increased by 16% in the seven months since I was elected convenor.

I support the political objective of a more equal, less divided society, in which more of society’s resources go to those who work and those most in need. The scope for working towards these objectives from within the Council is limited, but real. Within existing financial realities, we must do what we can to protect those who are most vulnerable from harm.
As a Councillor, I will use my knowledge of benefits to help constituents get the Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support they are entitled to, and to contribute to Council debates on these subjects. I have a lot of experience making a case and explaining things to very different people (clients, workers, judges, bureaucrats and managers, for example) and I would use that to advocate for constituents and the Labour Party within the Council.

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