Caroline Pidgeon is proposing an Alternative Budget at City Hall setting out plans to build 200,000 new homes in London. Caroline is leader of the Liberal Democrats at City Hall and candidate for London Mayor.
Caroline said, "The shortage of affordable housing in London remains the gravest crisis facing our city, with over 500,000 people currently languishing on housing waiting lists. For decades London has failed to build enough new homes, driving up rents and putting property prices well beyond the reach of most ordinary Londoners.
Caroline Pidgeon plans a radical upgrade to childcare services in London. She will pay for it by introducing a 'tourist tax' on luxury hotel stays typical of major cities. Caroline, Liberal Democrat Mayoral candidate and mother of a young child said:
“As any parent in London will know, the cost and availability of childcare in London puts a real strain on families. Compared with the rest of the UK, 10% fewer women return to work after having children.
“Many cities around the world including New York, Paris and Berlin have a Tourist Tax. My plan for a £2 a night levy on hotels of 3* or above would raise £50m a year by 2018 and mean we could fund more wrap around child care including breakfast clubs and the after school, activities, s well as more training places to boost the number of childminders working in London.”
Pidgeon welcomes TfL takeover of suburban trains
Transport for London confirmed today it wants to take control of the capital's suburban rail network. Commenting on the news Liberal Democrat Mayoral Candidate Caroline Pidgeon said:
“This news, while its is something I have long advocated, will still see some passengers waiting until 2021 - in the case those using Southern trains - to see any real changes in either service levels or lower fares.
Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, today pressed the current Mayor to take new steps to tackle traffic congestion. Caroline has announced hew own plans to introduce a workplace parking levy for central London and around Canary Wharf.
Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on Transport for London’s withdrawal of controversial plans to close Caledonian tube station for eight months to replace the two lifts said:
“This U-turn by TfL is a great victory for people power. I congratulate Nigel Scott and the organisers of this excellent campaign and everyone who got behind it."
Commenting on the announcement by the RMT union that they are to stage three 24 hour strikes of on London's Tube network, Liberal Democrat mayoral candidate Caroline Pidgeon said:
"The Mayor and TfL have messed up the negotiations on the introduction of the night Tube by giving an artificial deadline, allowing the Unions to hold them to ransom. But given that date passed last September, it is now quite clear that the unions are now playing games rather than working all out to secure an agreement. Both sides need to come together, sit round the table and hammer out a full and fair deal. London and Londoners need, and expect, nothing less."
Caroline Pidgeon, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, today set out plans for half price fares on Underground, DLR, Overground and TfL Rail services for people who start their journeys before 7.30am.
Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, said:
“Half price fares on TfL’s Tube and rail services would really help some of London’s lowest paid workers who often have to work unsocial hours. This is a genuine fare cut that can be delivered immediately.
Over a third of hospitals in London are still failing to take part in a scheme which has been proven to dramatically reduce knife crime. The admission that many hospitals are still not sharing anonymous data collected from knife victims was made last week by Stephen Greenhalgh, the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.
The admission is despite the fact that the full adoption of the ‘Cardiff Model’ was a specific manifesto commitment of the Mayor which he made to Londoners before his election in 2012. The publication of the information was only made following long standing inquires being made by Caroline Pidgeon.
The ‘Cardiff Model’ is a proven mechanism of sharing and using anonymous data collected from violence related A&E admissions to help support effective policing, such as tackling crime hotspots. In areas where it has been implemented it has led to a 42% reduction in A&E admissions as a result of violent crime.
Caroline Pidgeon has a long record in supporting the full adoption of the Cardiff Model and last year the Mayor admitted to her that it was “disappointing that at the moment only 30% of the data about crimes from A&Es and walk-in centres is actually shared with the police.” (see notes to editors).
Commenting on the slow adoption of the Cardiff Model across London Caroline Pidgeon said: “The Cardiff Model should have been implemented in every corner of London many years ago.”
“The Mayor likes to talk tough about knife crime, but when it comes to tackling knife crime only actions matter. A clear pledge he made to Londoners to tackle this issue has sadly not been met. Caroline Pidgeon raised the issue of the adoption of the Cardiff Model and other policies to tackle knife crime at Mayor’s Question Time this week.
In responding to Caroline’s questions the Mayor admitted that he would have to get some hospital Chief Executives into City Hill to discuss the lack of implementation of the Cardiff Model. He also accepted the need for better education within schools on knife crime and that he would now consider further funding for organisations that provide dedicated youth workers in A&E departments.
Notes to editors:
1. The Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime’s letter to Caroline Pidgeon is enclosed, listing just 17 A&Es and Urgent Care Centres which are effectively sharing data on violent offences with the police. The information provided in the letter was finally meeting a pledge made by the Mayor back in December 2014 to update Caroline Pidgeon on the implementation of the Cardiff Model. For further information click here http://goo.gl/vPmkzG
2. Details of Caroline Pidgeon’s questioning of the Mayor at this week’s Mayor’s Question Time on progress in tackling knife crime can be seen at this webcast, starting at 4 minutes 50 seconds. https://www.london.gov.uk/mayors-question-time-2015-12-16
3. On the 17th September 2014 the Mayor admitted to Caroline Pidgeon that back then only 30% of the data picked up by A&Es is shared with the police. http://goo.gl/yJ3vQ6
4. Full details of how the Cardiff Model operates can be seen in this report published on the BMJ website: http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.d3313#aff-2
5. Caroline Pidgeon’s recent report “To The Point” which examined the extent of knife crime in London and policies to tackle it is enclosed. https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/ldlondon/pages/383/attachments/original/1448568363/To_The_Point_Knife_Crime_report.pdf?1448568363
Lib Dem Mayoral Candidate Caroline Pidgeon, commenting on figures released today by Transport for London showing that Friday 4th December 2015 was the busiest day ever on the London Underground said:
“The increasing use of the Tube is a clear sign of London’s growth in both its population and popularity as a place to visit. In many respects it is something to celebrate.
“However we cannot hide away from the fact that delays on the London Underground caused by overcrowding are increasing.
“And despite TfL’s continual boasting about certain figures it is incredible that they choose to not even record how often Tube stations are temporarily closed due to overcrowding.”
“TfL should face up to this issue by firstly publishing accurate statistics about station closures, secondly ensuring Tube upgrades continue to take place and finally taking steps to manage demand, such as through lower ‘early bird’ fares to encourage demand on the Tube to be better spread over the day.”
“Record usage on the Tube does not have to go hand in hand with record closures and delays due to overcrowding.”
Commenting on reports of a potential six month delay on a decision over Heathrow, Liberal Democrat London Mayoral candidate Caroline Pidgeon said:
"Londoners opposed to expansion are fed up of being lied to. A decision is needed now.
“Heathrow is not, and never will be, the place to expand airport capacity and the sooner this Tory government accepts that, the sooner we can get on with developing a sensible aviation policy for the UK."