Welcome to our latest bulletin, designed to keep you posted on the news stories* related to our priorities, and the latest developments within the True & Fair Party.
Today we hear the King’s Speech at the State Opening of Parliament which is normally a bit of a non-event, as it’s a list of Bills that the government want to get through in the coming year, setting the tone and tenor for the legislative year ahead.
Not only is this speech the first by a King in 70 years, but Rishi Sunak is in election mood and wants people to see this speech as a ‘commitment to create a better and brighter future’, with a ‘package of measures focused on strengthening our society and helping people to feel safe in their communities’.
We see you, Sunak! The tone and tenure are more right-wing than we’ve seen from a Conservative Party in decades, if ever. They are a fractured party where discipline, morality, competence and being in touch with people is sorely lacking. A party that has broken Britain and now are trying to distract us with culture wars.
The elephant in the room is the diminishing trust between the public and politicians. We have to fix politics before we can fix Britain.
As our Leader, Gina Miller said:
“Sadly the King’s Speech offers little to mend the fracture between people and politicians. Many people simply won’t believe this government is offering any real change at all.
“With recent events such as the ongoing Covid inquiry yet again fraying public trust, our fundamentally flawed political system needs a root and branch overhaul.
“To revive the integrity of our democracy, we have to fix politics to fix Britain.”
Some of the Political Reforms in the True & Fair Party’s Pre-Election Manifesto – Part 1
• An Ethics in Public Office Act to enshrine the Ministerial Code in law and an independent Office of Ministerial Accountability and Integrity to adjudicate on breaches.
• New contracts to oblige MPs to conduct constituency surgeries at least 38 weeks a year.
• New powers for constituents to sack MPs who repeatedly fail to attend debates and votes in the Commons.
• A ban on second jobs for MPs except for public service, such as shifts in the NHS
• Abolition of severance payments to sacked ministers.
Read all our proposed pragmatic constitutional and electoral reforms here.
1 million children are now in destitute homes
Tory Minister Richard Holden was boasting about his party’s record on child poverty on 31 October. He brazenly claimed that there have been big falls in absolute poverty for children over the last few years, which is false.
In fact, one million children are now in destitute homes, an 88% rise since 2019, with the number in food poverty doubling in the last year.
Sadly, this is just one of the many examples available to illustrate how the system we have allows poor policy-making and gaslighting politicians to fail the people and children of Britain. As Nelson Mandela said, "There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children.” And “History will judge us by the difference we make in the everyday lives of children."
By this standard and so many others, we have become a soulless society due to the dire leadership we have suffered for the last 13 years. It is time to speak out, to shout that enough is enough and back a different vision that will revive our communities, our hope and our pride.
Destitution in the UK 2023
‘I live off £30 a month’: Nearly 4 million people in the UK experienced ‘destitution’ last year
Ongoing Israel / Gaza Conflict
There is growing global unease about the suffering of the civilian population in Gaza as PM Netanyahu appears to be digging in for a “long and difficult war”. But ex PM Barak fears Israel has only weeks left to eliminate Hamas, as people around the world – and most significantly in the US – are calling for the end of the inhumane attacks on Gaza.
We believe their diplomacy must now focus on a multinational Arab force to take control of Gaza as soon as the military campaign ends, to help usher in a return of Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority to take over from Hamas, and to restore political order in Gaza. Only then can the return to diplomacy aimed at the creation of a Palestinian state to end the cycle of conflict begin.
AI will ‘co-pilot’ and not replace you
So said PM Sunak at his latest vanity project, a two-day ‘AI Safety Summit’ on 1 and 2 November, attended by tech bosses, celebrities and academics from 28 countries. Going all out to try to reassure the public that new AI tools will help people at work rather than replace them, Sunak said that the government's job is to improve training and deliver a world-class education system.
The summit failed to focus on critical areas such as the impact of AI on employment law and smaller businesses, legislation to regulate AI, and strong measures to ensure jobs are protected. In fact, Elon Musk said the exact opposite – that there will be no jobs in the future!
At True & Fair, we are not shying away from the transformative effects and challenges to society including the economy, our well-being and personal lives that critical issues such as AI, climate change and an ageing population will have on our communities and country. A future where basics like food and water will become priorities, leading us to launch our petition calling on the next government to urgently launch a National Food and Water Plan
Since October 2022, we have also been working on the second Pre-election Manifesto – The Three Big Es: Economy, Education and Environment. The first – ECONOMY, will be published on 14 November ahead of the Chancellor’s Autumn on 22 November. Jeremy Hunt may have an unexpected £13 billion headroom, but will he buckle under pressure from MPs like John Redwood and Jacob Rees Mogg to use this headroom to bring in juicy tax cuts to keep the Conservatives members happy, rather than serious measures to boost growth, investment and productivity, as well as the public purse.
1 in 10 councils' finances on a knife edge as they face bankruptcy
On 1 November it was reported that one in 10 England county councils are facing bankruptcy. Birmingham City Council has already been forced to slash spending after declaring itself effectively bankrupt in September. More local authorities fear they could be next, according to a survey by the County Councils Network.
None of this is surprising when you hear that, since 2010, councils have sold some 75,000 assets worth over £15bn and now have nothing left. Services have been cut to the bone, putting vital services at risk.
Under Tory rule, services have been privatised for profits. Reversing this damage is high on the agenda at True & Fair. Without reforms to local government governance, transparency and auditing, the money we work hard for and pay them to look after our local communities and services will go down the plughole.
Warning one in 10 county councils face effective bankruptcy
|Tuesday 14th November 2023
09.00 – 10.00
The Launch of our Pre-Election Manifesto: The Three Big Es: Economy, Education, Environment - ECONOMY (including the NHS). Bursting with radical, thought-provoking policy ideas and reforms based on input from experts, academics, practitioners and data.
Format: Online Event – Speeches followed by a Q & A - The event link will be sent out on the morning of Monday 13th November 2023.
|Tuesday 21st November 2023||
Debate the motion “Brexit has been a disaster and now must be reversed”.
Proposition: Gina Miller, Alex Salmond, Andrew Marr
Opposition: David Davis MP, Baroness Claire Fox, Mike Graham
In the chair: John Bercow
|Other Events||Please check here|
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In the media:
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As always, we welcome your feedback and suggestions, and if you live in one of the constituencies our candidates are standing in, please do think about coming to help: [email protected]
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*This newsletter contains links to news articles on third party websites operated by parties other than True & Fair. True & Fair has no control over and will accept no responsibility or liability in respect of, the accuracy of the information on any third-party website.