Election 2022: manifesto dialogue

The 2022 election is going to see significant change in how our Government is elected and formed. The new constituencies and emergence of political parties make it one of the most interesting and unpredictable in living memory.

With elections come manifestos that set out the values of the party or individual and their intended course of action, if elected. They form a contract with the electorate.

With the emergence of political parties these documents become more important because a block of elected members stand a much better chance of making their manifesto pledges a reality than individual members who may be a lone voice.

This is why Liberate has put together and circulated a document called ‘manifesto dialogue’. (Download a pdf version here.)

As a charity Liberate cannot endorse any candidate or political party, but we can ask  questions to find out where candidates stand on issues that are important to the work we do, and we can inform candidates of the problems we would like to see Jersey’s Government, in its widest sense, solve.

This document is a way of sharing Liberate’s current concerns with our next potential States Members in order that they will think about our points and respond to some or all of them in their manifestos. In that sense, it is a dialogue.

Our areas of concern are divided into personal characteristics, some of which are protected by Discrimination Law.

Pledges

We would like to see manifestos pledge their support for the following 7 issues (for more details, click each pledge) and put forward plans for action regarding:

1. The rights of migrant workers, to give all workers protection and security making Jersey a welcoming and ethical jurisdiction in which to live.

2. The appointment of an Equalities Minister  with responsibility for addressing systemic discrimination and creating an inclusive culture within the institutions of Government and wider society.

3. The harm being done by social media and other online platforms.

4. The housing crisis facing young adults in Jersey, to enable them to afford the dignity of independent living.

5. Caring for an aging population and making the older generation as prominent in the Government’s strategic thinking as the young.

6. Investment in Jersey’s property portfolio, especially education buildings, with plans for upgrading facilities to include everyone.

7. Bold solutions to the widening divide between rich and poor in the Island and to generating revenue that does not place an additional financial burden on low income households in Jersey.

Our dialogue with candidates standing for election looks at the issues of immigration, equality and inclusion, social media, housing, social care, educational investment and the wealth gap through the lens of one minority group affected by the issue.

However, it is the case that not just one minority group is affected by these issues. Making the workplace fairer for migrant workers may also make the workplace fairer for women and disabled employees who  disproportionately fill more precarious part-time positions; creating inclusive workplace cultures and tackling social media harms  benefits everyone; dealing with the housing crisis could also help older people wanting to sell to downsize and disabled people needing accessible accommodation; looking after our elderly better may benefit families, who may have caring responsibilities at both ends of the age spectrum; improving school facilities has a direct positive impact for our young people; and, reducing the wealth gap may touch the lives of many minorities as there is a correlation between low incomes and being part of a minority group.

Minority issues are rarely ever a problem for a minority of people. Making life better for those most impacted by an inequality often has the consequence of making things better for more people outside that minority group.

We therefore encourage candidates to listen closely to minority voices in their campaigns and during their term of office, if elected, as those on the margins and touched most by an issue often see the solution clearest.

If you would like to get in contact with Liberate to send us your manifesto, please email hello@liberate.je

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