The Yorkshire Party has announced its policy response to the floods that have devastated communities across the North of England and is calling upon the government to take action.
The party, which will be fielding a record number of candidates in Yorkshire in the upcoming general election, criticised the Government's failure to act two years ago when warned that flood defence plans heavily favour London and South-East, with spending per person in the South-East (£180) more than double that in Yorkshire (£83).
The Yorkshire Party, which recently launch its manifesto 'Yorkshire Deserves Better', is calling on the current and future Governments to guarantee 'adequate and long-lasting flood defences across Yorkshire' as well as taking immediate action to aid those affected by the recent flooding.
Yorkshire Party leader, Chris Whitwood, criticised the Prime Minister's statement that the floods were not a national emergency.
Mr Whitwood said,"How dare Boris Johnson claim that the flooding that is devastating large parts of the north and has already cost lives is not a national emergency. It is clear that when push comes to shove, the arrogance and complacency of Westminster will always fail Yorkshire and the North.
"Currently flood defence spending is calculated based on a cost-benefit formula, meaning areas with higher property prices receive higher amounts of Government spending to defend against floods like we have seen. The current formula clearly favours the South-East of England and this cannot be allowed to continue. Yorkshire deserves better."
The Yorkshire Party policy response calls on the national government to: declare a national emergency, releasing emergency funds and calling on the support of the armed forces to assist emergency services where necessary; ensure fair funding on flood defences and the implementation of long-term flood prevention plan; and invest in natural flood defences, including planting six million trees across Yorkshire (in keeping with the party's environment pledge), to absorb water and slow run off into watercourses.
Chris Holmes, Yorkshire Party candidate for Doncaster Valley, said,"The Government's response has been pitifully slow. Not only were they warned of the inequality in north-south flood defence spending, the almost casual response by the Government in Westminster has left people let down by both the local Labour Council and the national Conservative government. Yorkshire deserves better."
Yorkshire Party Doncaster North candidate, Stevie Manion, who has temporarily paused campaigning to assist in the community effort, praised the work of emergency services and volunteers,
"If this had happened in the south, it would have been an emergency on the first day. Meanwhile, streets are still underwater and communities rally around those affected.
"Stainforth community centre has been inundated with donations of food, clothing and cleaning products with volunteers working around the clock trying to sort this to make it easier to hand out to the people of Fishlake. This is a story repeated in Bentley. Communities are not made by politicians, they are made by the people in them, looking out for each other, supporting each other, and standing up for each other. Doncaster has done itself proud. Yorkshire deserves better."