What each party has to say on the key issues at this weeks local elections

With just two days to go before Sheffield City Council local elections, we looked at the local manifestos from the three largest parties and where they stand on major issues that have affected the city.

Knife Crime

There were eight fatal stabbings in Sheffield last year and knife crime has doubled in South Yorkshire over the past decade.

Labour: There is no mention of knife crime in Sheffield Labour manifesto and there is no mention of crime or policing.

Liberal Democrats: “Adopt a public health approach, involving all agencies, to tackle the issue of knife crime. Campaign for a major national reinvestment in youth services.”

The Green Party: “Action on knife crime and anti-social behaviour – good local schools that children can walk to safely.”

Climate Change

Repeated demonstrations at the town hall and the activities of Extinction Rebellion nationally mean climate change is more likely to be a forefront of voters’ minds – particularly younger voters in the marginal City ward.

Labour: “New Carbon Neutral target for the city, bringing it forward by decades. [We will] Work with partners to implement a city-wide Energy Strategy.”

Liberal Democrats: “Our planet is facing a climate emergency. As a city we need to act urgently and sign up to being carbon neutral by 2030. Liberal Democrats will establish a citizen’s assembly to develop policies to enable us to achieve this target”

The Green Party: “Real action on air pollution, climate change and public health – at every level of decision-making”

Brexit

The red, white and blue elephant in the room – this issue has dominated the news cycle and our minds for the last few years.

Labour: No mention of Brexit.

Liberal Democrats: No mention of Brexit.

The Green Party: No mention of Brexit.

This may seem surprising but often in local elections parties seek to distance themselves from their national equivalents and to focus the campaign on local issues.

Trees

If you have spent extended time in Sheffield, you will have heard of the controversy around the felling of trees by contractor Amey as part of the council ‘Streets Ahead’ programme.

Labour: Plant 100,000 trees as part of the Trees and Woodland Strategy.

Liberal Democrats: Engage campaigners and communities to review the implementation of the ‘Streets Ahead’ contract.

The Green Party: Campaigning for a healthy urban environment that values and protects trees.

Public Transport

This a constant concern at any local election. From trams to trains to buses – Sheffield is no different from the rest of the country.

Labour: Lobby the Government to ensure its decisions concerning High Speed 2, Northern Powerhouse Rail, the Midland Mainline franchise and the Hope Valley line are right for Sheffield.

Liberal Democrat: Scrap Labour’s bus partnership which has seen higher charges for worse services, and instead, give residents greater control over bus services in the city by introducing a London style bus contract to deliver a good value, stable, comprehensive and easy-to-use bus network.

The Green Party: Cheaper, more reliable public transport so people can choose to leave their cars at home. Investment in safer, more attractive routes for cyclists and pedestrians.