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Chris Copeman, Green Party – Ellesmere Port and Neston – GE19 candidate

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We are providing all 39 parliamentary candidates across Cheshire the opportunity to tell our readers what their priorities are, and to tell us a little more about themselves.

We’ve asked the same five questions of each candidate, for the simplest comparison, and we have invited candidates to supply social media and website links if they choose to.

In this article, we speak to Chris Copeman, standing for the Green Party in Ellesmere Port and Neston.

 



 

1. What is the main reason you’ve decided to stand in this election?

I am standing in this election because I want to offer the people of Ellesmere Port a new, different sort of politics.

I want to offer people positive change and real action to tackle the issues we are facing now and in the future, instead of complacency, indecision and gestures made purely for political gain.

I don’t believe the two main parties are offering  credible solutions to the problems we are facing today nor are they acting in the interests of British people.

We need honest politics where we face up to present and future challenges such as climate change and social inequality, as opposed to the divisive populism we have seen of recent years.

The Green Party want to hold a second referendum now people can see the real problems that leaving the EU will cause.

We want to fund our public services properly by rolling back austerity, prevent tax avoidance by corporations and billionaires, provide decent housing for all, and kick start a new green economy to provide thousands of new jobs to tackle climate change and improve our environment.

 

2. Which local priorities would you take forward as our MP?

I would like to see proper funding of our NHS to improve GP and hospital services which are very stretched locally.

We need to significantly improve mental health services, and invest in social care for the elderly and vulnerable.

Public transport needs to be greatly improved and made more affordable for everyone. This will have the knock-on effect of reducing air pollution in the area, which has already exceeded legal limits in certain places.

We need to provide reasonably priced and well maintained council housing, giving everyone the opportunity to live in a comfortable, well-insulated home.

I want to see local rented housing improved and upgraded, and more legal protections for occupants. Under the current government, cuts to local services have led to an increase in homelessness and the reliance on food banks throughout the North West.

This is unacceptable.

The pressure on lower and middle-income families has undoubtedly increased as a result of the cuts to council budgets, and this must be reversed in order to support local communities effectively, protecting the most vulnerable in our society, and giving the younger generation the best possible start.

 

3. Which national priorities would you take forward as our MP?

As the MP for Ellesmere Port and Neston I would campaign for a second referendum and fight to keep the country in the EU.

I believe many jobs in the constituency would be threatened and standards of living affected. I want to see real action to prevent catastrophic climate change.

The Green New Deal proposed by the Green Party would invest heavily in renewable and sustainable technology, providing hundreds of thousands of jobs in the green energy sector.

The UK has the potential to become a world leader in this exciting new area, and more Green MPs in Westminster are needed to campaign determinedly for that future.

The UK has a huge amount of poor quality inefficient housing stock. The Greens want to see huge investment in private and social housing in order to provide well-insulated homes for all.

This will drastically reduce our energy demand, and levels of fuel poverty as a result. Improvements in regional public transport infrastructure are also urgently needed, bringing our transport services into line with other leading European nations.

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4. What is it about your party and/or its manifesto that makes you proud to represent your party? Are there any manifesto pledges or commitments you’d like to see changed?

At the heart of Green Party policy is the belief that we have a responsibility to future generations. Sustainability and equality are at the heart of every single policy.

The decisions we make now, and the actions we take today, are vital in protecting the natural world, and creating a fair society in which future generations can thrive.

Our environmental policy sets out the rapid and decisive action we must take now in order to avoid further climate change.

Our education policy demands that our children are provided with schooling that equips them for a changing global context, and that a wider choice of vocational and academic learning is offered, together with free higher education.

Our, energy, transport and industrial sectors need to be ‘future-proofed’ through decarbonisation, investment and the provision of training to give people the skills to access millions of new green jobs.

I am proud to be a Green Party candidate because it is the Party of the future, in which the major challenges we face as a nation are not ignored and left to another generation to manage.

But instead, the Greens are embracing these challenges as opportunities, for us, and most importantly, our children.

 

5. Please tell us a little about yourself.

(ie: your background, your experience, your hobbies, your non-political interests)

I have been an environmental and political campaigner for many years. I live with my partner, and our young daughter, in a house that we recently renovated.

This renovation project took one year, in which we learned the practical skills needed to create a highly energy-efficient house, following a building method known as passivhaus construction.

I have since designed and managed the construction of a new zero energy veterinary surgery, where I work as a veterinary surgeon.

I am a keen hill-walker, and I love the outdoors, especially sharing this with my daughter.

I hope that when she is an adult, she too will enjoy the natural world and want to protect it as I have done.

 

 

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