Safe and sociable local communities
The Green Party believes in working closely with residents. They have a wide range of expertise and ideas and know their own neighbourhoods better than anyone else. Local people involved in their communities can achieve a great deal – but also need the right support from the Council and others such as the police and health services. This should include decent core services, safe neighbourhoods and good community facilities.
- Continue to actively support the development of Residents’ Associations, ‘Friends of’ groups, local sports clubs and other community groups and enterprises.
- Keep residents up to date about what the Council is doing and involve residents in open consultations on new developments – from the very beginning.
- Maintain and if possible, increase funding for local area coordinators who can help residents make the most of Council, NHS and voluntary/community sector services.
- Maintain and if possible, increase ward budgets which enable relatively small amounts of Council funding to be spent based on very locally made decisions; improve support for this process so that more residents can be directly involved.
- Encourage lunch clubs, community cafes and festivals, street parties and events which bring people together across generations and reduce isolation and loneliness.
- Protect the city’s network of branch libraries and ensure they all remain open and staffed, providing open access to learning and operating as community hubs. We will not support awarding a contract for running our libraries to a profit-making company.
- Work with the police and other agencies to actively promote community policing and safer neighbourhoods. Lobby for more community police officers on the streets.
- Work with the Environment Agency and regional flood organisations to protect York’s neighbourhoods from future flooding. We need both localised flood protection and ‘upstream’ prevention such as ‘slowing the flow’, flood storage and tree planting.
- Wherever possible improve substance abuse services, homelessness services and mental health services – all key issues for safer local neighbourhoods.
- Review all the Council’s enforcement activities, particularly planning and public protection to make them more effective and responsive to resident’s concerns, for example through developing a Code of Practice for developers of construction sites.
- Promote good relations between York’s student population and local residents, encouraging student volunteering in local communities.
- Encourage the development of Neighbourhood Forums, Neighbourhood Plans and Urban Parishes – all of which involve residents more in local decision making.