South Lakes Labour would like to welcome you to our brand new women's blog. The aim? To help women to get to know each other and get their perspective on the things that is important to us - both national and local. My name is Anna and I'm the recently appointed Women's Officer for the CLP. This is very much a 'suck it and see' adventure for me. Like so many women I have too many plates spinning and shouldn't really take any more on. I should probably spend more time with my feet up eating chocolate or, according to the scales, not eating chocolate (can we have a ban on scales please, but not on chocolate) - however, this means a lot to me.
Like many other people I have been reminded of the vital contribution women make to political life. This was highlighted by the memories people have shared following the tragic death of Jo Cox. Roses have been chosen by many individuals and organisations as a way of remembering her (a red rose for Labour and a white rose for Yorkshire) and this has influenced the choice of name for this blog. I hope it will be, albeit a small but hopefully living tribute to her, not only in what she achieved, but in the way she achieved it. I hope we can pledge to listen to each other, respect each other and be determined to achieve the things which we know are important to our communities.
There’s a number of ways you can contribute. You can use the comments section below to let me know what you think or you can drop me an e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) with some of your ideas. I’ll do my best to respond to everyone! I also encourage you to share a link to the blog on social media to generate discussion.
Also, coming soon(ish!)… The result of the Women's Questionnaire and hopefully an update from the National Women's Conference (well, I've applied to go but believe me the online application is best done with a large gin and tonic and one of those doodah that stop you grinding your teeth, but there is still time, do apply to come). It's in Liverpool this year, 24th September. Google Labour National Women's Conference 2016 and you'll find it. Maybe a group of us could meet up?
I suppose, before I go, I should mention the elephant in the room at the moment - the confusion about Brexit and the situation in the Labour Party – indeed most political parties. On the former, well, I'm confused too, and on the latter I am, like many others, deeply concerned. I re-joined the Labour Party just after the last election and prior to the leadership contest. For several years I had been disaffected with both politics and politicians. My own personal battles left me aghast by a system that seems unable to respond to the urgent needs of some of our communities.
However, we need an effective opposition and so I returned to the party that most reflected my personal values and concerns. I’ve found a CLP who have worked hard for many years to keep the principles I aspire to alive, when all I did was moan. Hence I volunteered and hence this blog is designed as a way of helping as many women as possible contribute and feel part of our local and national scene.