Stewart Arnold Picture: Robbie Macdonald
Yorkshire Party Leader Stewart Arnold has attacked “shambolic” Westminster politics and accused the Government of ignoring the clamour for real devolution.
In the wake of ministers’ resignations over Brexit, Stewart said that far from seeking to build a prosperous progressives region, the Government was taking its eye off the North and Yorkshire, in particular.
In an email to Party members, Stewart said: “We deserve better than this. We deserve better than having some of the lowest levels of education funding in the UK. We deserve better than crumbling transport networks. We deserve better than an underfunded and overstretched NHS.
“And we deserve better than the shallow attempts to split Yorkshire up into fake ‘city regions’.”
That was why the Party was launching a revised Yorkshire Pledge, as a way for local people to show all politicians that they believed Yorkshire deserved better.
“As a member of the Yorkshire Party, we are asking that you share the Pledge with your friends. Encourage them to sign the Pledge and demand better for Yorkshire,” he said
Earlier, Stewart had written a special article to highlight the need for the county to raise its voice to demand change.
“It’s four years since the Party was formed to campaign for greater powers to be moved out of London to Yorkshire.
“It’s now almost a year since the vast majority of local council leaders in Yorkshire put in their One Yorkshire proposal for greater devolution for the whole of the county.
“The Government promised to support a bottom-up approach. It’s on the table.
“And yet nothing has happened.
“All this time, places such as Scotland and London and, more recently, Manchester and Liverpool, with their own devolved powers are getting on with it, as Yorkshire continues to be left behind.
“The Yorkshire economy is seriously underperforming at the moment. The Government’s own estimates show that having control of more of our own affairs here could boost the Yorkshire economy by as much as £13bn within10 years. We believe even that is undervaluing our potential.
“We want to show the Government clearly that this is something the people of Yorkshire want to happen now. That’s why we want as many people as possible to sign the Pledge.
“We have to make our voices heard. Leaving us dangling without any decision is nothing short of contempt. We need to make the Government listen.”
The Pledge in Full
We are proud of Yorkshire, its heritage, its environment and its people and want to build an even better future.
Yorkshire is its cities, towns, countryside and people. Together as One Yorkshire.
The time has come for us to have more control over our affairs, to enable us to unleash Yorkshire’s potential and build a stronger region within the United Kingdom.
I call for Yorkshire to have the decision making powers to shape its own future.
Sign the Pledge: https://www.yorkshireparty.org.uk/sign-the-yorkshire-pledge/