Ealing Central & Acton parliamentary candidates share their views on local economy and employment

By Cesar Medina

23rd Jun 2024 | General Election 2024

Ealing Nub News asked the candidates standing for Ealing Central & Acton for their thoughts on local economy and employment (credit: Image supplied).
Ealing Nub News asked the candidates standing for Ealing Central & Acton for their thoughts on local economy and employment (credit: Image supplied).

In the coming weeks, Ealing Nub News will be asking Ealing Central & Acton constituency candidates questions in the run up to election on various topics such as local economy, social care, housing, education, environment and more.

We reached out to each candidate and asked questions on local economy and employment. Here are their responses.

Stephen Balogh, Social Democratic Party candidate for Ealing Central & Acton (credit: Stephen Balogh).

What is your relationship with Ealing and Acton? How long have you been connected to this area, and in what capacities?

Stephen Balogh, Social Democratic Party (SDP) candidate says: "I have been an Ealing resident for over 30 years, married with two grown up, adopted children and am active in non-profit & voluntary sectors.

"With multiple ethnicities in my immediate family, Ealing has always been a natural place to live.

"I am committed to local 'community building' initiatives and to bringing my experience of a 30-year business career to helping turn round struggling non-profit organisations.

"Having previously been widowed and also having suffered the suicide of a close family member, I support various work associated with bereavement."

Kate Crossland, Green Party candidate says: "I've lived in Ealing for more than twenty years. I moved here when I started working in my first job as a doctor, at Ealing hospital.

"I first started to get involved in my local community when I set up a PlayStreet on our road- from there I got involved at the local school, then the Residents Association and a fair few others things along the way.

"Having active local groups really builds a sense of community in an area."

Nada Jarche, Workers Party of Britain candidate says: "Although I am of Palestinian descent, I have lived in London for more than 20 years, and as a resident of the city, I am quite unhappy with the decline that we have all been going through.

"Despite the fact that I do not now reside in the borough of Ealing Central and Acton, I do have family and friends there, so I am able to comprehend the area and the problems that have persisted despite all efforts to bring about improvements.

"My motivation to come out and bring about change for all locals—business owners, students, adults, and the elderly—came from this."

Kate Crossland, Green Party candidate for Ealing Central & Acton (credit: Kate Crossland).

What are your plans to support local businesses and boost the economy in Ealing and Acton?

Balogh says: "Like many parts of London, the area covered by the Ealing Central and Acton constituency (not forgetting the small portion of Hammersmith & Fulham also within its boundaries) experiences constant competing pressures over land use, for instance over the conversion of Non-Designated Industrial Sites to residential or mixed-use development. 

"Vacancy rates for industrial floorspace are low, typically around 3pc, generally accepted as indicative of market distorting, even suppressing, in terms of demand choice for promoters of business expansion. 

"Over the medium to long term there is likely to be continuation of trends towards densification, e.g. redevelopment/modernisation for more effective use of the given space, e.g. by stacking, or a version of densification that introduced more mixed use, e.g. industrial and other non-residential at low level with residential above.

"The SDP is committed to an industrial policy as part of its distinct Social Market position. Whilst this would often conjure up an image of large-scale manufacturing or similarly scaled economic activity, it is by no means limited to activity that requires major land use. 

"An element of the industrial policy will be investment in start-ups in key strategic sectors, especially in areas like Ealing where there is already a skilled workforce with ancillary infrastructure such as education and training facilities, and which would bring co-locational and other concentration benefits. 

"Such an industrial policy would also include more efficient planning co-ordination to reduce unnecessary delays between outline plan and fruition.

"A further commitment of the SDP is the restoration of a social housing sector, as outlined in its manifesto, including a commitment to building 100,000 social homes per year nationwide (and once sufficient stock has been built up to restore Right To Buy on a one sold/one built basis). 

"Ealing has traditionally been a hub for housebuilding expertise, workforce and logistics, and would naturally be an area to benefit from such investment, such as skills colleges for training an expanded construction workforce."

Crossland says: "As a Green Party candidate I'm particularly aware of the challenges businesses face with trying to address their climate impacts.

"I know many businesses are keen to reduce this- both because they see the importance of it but also because their customers look for eco-credentials when making choices about where to spend their money.

"So I'm excited to see the Green Party manifesto includes a commitment to provide grants to help with this. I'd be really interested if elected to work on this and share the progress being made locally."

Jarche says: "Lately, there has been a decline in employment growth, and people are experiencing job losses and low-paying positions.

"This has an effect on the availability of jobs in the area, which makes it harder for businesses to succeed.

"The goal is to encourage enterprises and provide an equal workplace for all employers, allowing them to earn maximum salaries.

"In addition, I want to assist people who are unemployed right now and are having trouble obtaining work."

Nada Jarche, Workers Part of Britain candidate for Ealing Central & Acton (credit: Nada Jarche).

How will you address employment and create job opportunities for residents in our area?

Balogh says: "Relative to London as a whole and in absolute terms, Ealing has in recent years been broadly ahead and improving in most indicators of employment and being economically active. 

"This in no way suggests that more should not be done in every employment sector present in Ealing, some of which is summarised in the previous section. 

"In addition to this, a major part of employment attractiveness is excellence in education. The SDP has strong policies that include the following:

"Schools will provide more options for those who are best suited to vocational and technical programmes, as well as academic courses.

"This means increasing the number of students doing BTEC programmes and increasing access for students to move into employment through this pathway. 

"Employers who take on a graduate apprentice from a technical school / BTEC programme at the age of 16 will receive a rebate of 25% of the first year's wages for that employee.

"Employers who take on a school leaver without a basic qualification will be rebated 75% of the apprenticeship wage for two years, subject to a suitable training programme. 

"Suitable technical courses (equivalent to the current BTEC Level 3 at age 18) will be the normal requirement for acceptance into paid on-job training for public sector roles such as nursing and policing, which presently require degree courses.

"Finally in this summary, the SDP tax of 2% will be levied on all online purchases and the proceeds used to fund civic improvement in town centres across the UK, looking to render areas such as Ealing attractive places to work as well as to live."

Crossland says: "We have to address the problem of home insulation- it's the first step in reducing bills, creating healthier homes and reducing our carbon emissions.

"Greens would put meaningful funding behind home insulation programmes, creating good local jobs in the green economy."

Jarche says: "The following are the four essential steps to decreasing unemployment in the region and raising labour availability:

"Investing in human capital-enhancing education and training can increase worker productivity and workforce employability over the long run.

"Reducing employment taxes, such as those associated with national insurance contributions, will boost the need for labour, creating the possibility of new jobs.

"Demand stimulation in the public and private sectors that sustains overall demand strength to support the creation of new employment improved capacity to compete globally to add demand to the revenue cycle.

"Raising labour wages will improve employment incentives, reduce reliance on help, and expand the pool of potential employees."

We were not able to provide responses from all candidates as some did not respond to our request.

To find out who are the rest of the candidates standing for Ealing Central & Acton in this this year's general election, click here.

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