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MARCH 2022

Dear Friend

Welcome to the second month of my e-newsletter and thank you to everyone who's been in touch having read it - I really appreciate your feedback. Do continue to send me your comments, and please do share this email with friends and family who might be interested.

If you want to get involved yourself, whether by attending an event, signing a petition, helping out in the office, delivering leaflets or joining me on the campaign trail, I'll include links to help you do just that. If not, that's not a problem…..

In this edition:

  • Ukraine
  • The end of Covid restrictions
  • Cost of Living
  • Out and about in Guildford
  • Supporting Residents

Ukraine

The news over these last few weeks has been very difficult to watch and read. Shocking images of destroyed cities, millions displaced, thousands injured or killed. The destruction and cost to human life is devastating: I know that many people are struggling with anxiety about this, and for some, this revives old traumas. If you are experiencing difficulties, please seek support.

The government has moved to give Ukraine what military aid is possible and I am fully behind that. But they have been slow on sanctions in comparison with the EU and appallingly lacking in any sense of urgency or compassion in supporting refugees to get to Britain. This has to change.

  • I wrote an open letter towards the start of the month to Guildford Borough Council's Leader and Deputy Leader asking them a series of questions and calling on them to stand publicly with the people of Ukraine. I was grateful to receive a swift and thorough response from them which can be read here.
  • Joined the panel of ITV Meridian's The Last Word which included considerable discussion of the situation in Ukraine. You can watch the programme in full here.

It has been heartwarming to see the people of Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages actively respond to the needs of the Ukrainian people through generous donations and registering to open their homes as hosts. One question I have been asked is, once you have registered, how can you be matched with a family/individual. There are many ways to do this, including through individuals and local organisations who are sharing on Facebook, but in terms of national organisations providing this help there are:

Cost of Living

  • The Chancellor's Spring Statement was, to say the least, underwhelming. It barely scratches the surface of what's needed to fix the cost of living crisis. In particular, the failure to consider a VAT cut was a massive missed opportunity to help local people and businesses.
  • Expert analysis showed that 600,000 people will be pulled into poverty due to inaction, including 150,000 children. To press on with the NI increase, however fudged it is, and refuse to reinstate the uplift in universal credit is just wrong. The poorest among us are constantly being made to contribute the most when it comes to the challenge of reducing the deficit This is plainly unfair
  • Locally, families and businesses in Guildford Borough Council are facing a £35,387,898 tax bombshell this year due to the Conservative hike to National Insurance.
  • I also highlighted my concerns that 2,081 households in Guildford could miss out on the £150 Council Tax rebate.

Out and about in Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages

March has been another busy month as I have been continuing to knock on doors regularly, including in Westborough, Holy Trinity and Friary & St Nicolas to talk to local people and keep in touch with their hopes and concerns. I also joined colleagues in Woking to help with their local elections.

It's always a privilege to visit and meet with residents or local organisations; this month this has included:

  • Visiting South West Surrey Domestic Abuse Outreach Service to learn more about the important work they do supporting people experiencing domestic abuse and raising public awareness.
  • Met with Guildford Bike Project to discuss the project and its future.

If you'd like to invite me to one or would like me to visit a local business or other organisation please do get in touch.

I also hosted my first advice surgery where residents could meet with me in-person or via Zoom to discuss issues or ask for advice/support. The next surgery will be on Saturday 7th May 2-4pm so if you'd like to book an appointment please email zoe@guildfordlibdems.org.uk with your name, address and a short summary of what you'd like to discuss.

You can, of course, continue to contact me about issues anytime by sending me an email.

ZF in FSN

Supporting Residents

Working to support local residents is a crucial part of the work that I do alongside the Guildford and Waverley Borough Council's Liberal Democrat teams. In March this has included:

Of course, this is just a snapshot of the work that I do - the best way to keep up-to-date with everything is to follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and via the Guildford Liberal Democrat website.

Very best wishes and do take care of yourself and others at this time of increased anxiety. As always, please do get in touch if you have any questions for me or need support with local issues from myself and/or our councillor team.

Z Franklin signature

Zöe Franklin
Liberal Democrat Candidate for Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages

February 2022

Dear Friend

This new monthly newsletter is designed to keep you in touch with what I'm campaigning on, here in our constituency of Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages.

If you want to get involved yourself - whether by attending an event, signing a petition, helping out in the office, delivering leaflets or joining me on the campaign trail - I'll include links to help you do just that. If not, that's also fine. I hope you enjoy reading this - and please forward it to a friend or neighbour!

In this edition:

  • Ukraine
  • The end of Covid restrictions
  • Cost of Living
  • Out and about in Guildford
  • Supporting Residents

Rightly, the situation in Ukraine is currently dominating the news. I have been shocked and angered by the way that President Putin has shown a complete disregard for international law, the value of human life and democracy.

I have also been upset by the way that the Conservative Government has been reticent to make a real commitment to supporting the hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians fleeing the country. I am grateful to our Liberal Democrat MPs and others for pushing the Government daily to open a fast and simple refugee scheme. The UK has a proud history of providing sanctuary to people fleeing war and persecution. We must not abandon Ukrainian refugees in their hour of need.

Ukraine

Since Putin's invasion of Ukraine, I have been clear in my opposition and what our response as a country should be. You can read more on this here and watch a clip of my interview with That's TV on the issue.

It is easy to feel helpless in the face of endless news reports and social media information on the invasion. However, we can help and I encourage you, if you can afford to, to make a donation to the Red Cross appeal for Ukraine or take a look at these articles from The Guardian and TimeOut which have information on other ways to help.

I also encourage you to sign our petition calling on the Government to do more to support Ukrainian refugees - https://www.libdems.org.uk/ukraine-refugees.

ZF Ukraine Quote Mar 2022

End of Covid Restrictions

February saw the end of Covid restrictions in England and while we have all longed for this moment I am concerned by Boris Johnson's all-or-nothing approach. The reality is that Covid has not gone away and while we must learn to live with it we also need to ensure that we are protecting the most vulnerable in our communities. We also need to have an early warning system for emerging, more serious strains of the virus. The most effective way to do this is through continuing to provide free lateral flow tests.

Ending the free tests is effectively a tax on caring and doing the right thing. In Guildford Borough alone, ending free testing will leave as many as 14,622 people facing costs of over £500 a year to take regular tests and visit vulnerable relatives.

You can read more from me on this here.

Cost of Living

Another issue that I know is on so many people's minds is the soaring cost of living. Rising energy costs, food prices and the planned increase in National Insurance are putting very real pressure on family finances. I am clear that the Conservative Government should be doing more to help people with this.

Alongside rising living costs energy companies are making outrageous profits. Liberal Democrat MPs have been speaking out in Parliament about this and calling for a windfall tax. You can watch an interview with Ed Davey on this here.

Out and about in Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages

February has been another busy month as I have been continuing to knock on doors regularly, including in Holy Trinity ward, Shalford and Cranleigh to talk to local people and keep in touch with their hopes and concerns.

Each month I also have the privilege of attending community events and spending time working with Lib Dem colleagues to support our communities. A few of my visits this month have been:

  • Attending a Green Salon Collective event at Zero Carbon Guildford organised by local hair salon owner Julia Lampard. The event was focused on supporting and encouraging local salon teams to recycle more and take a more environmentally sustainable approach to hairdressing.
  • Attending Zero Carbon Guildford's #ShowtheLove
  • Meeting with Cranleigh's Lib Dem Councillor team to catch up with their work with Cranleigh residents.

I'm always delighted to attend local events, and if you'd like to invite me to one or would like me to visit a local business or other organisation please do get in touch.

Cranleigh and ZF

Supporting Residents

Working to support local residents is a crucial part of the work that I do alongside the Guildford and Waverley Borough Council's Liberal Democrat teams. In February this has included:

  • Working with Cllr Cait Taylor (Friary & St Nicolas ward) on concerns raised by Bellerby apartments residents about ongoing fire safety issues. As part of this, I was able to get their situation raised as part of Baroness Featherstone's contribution to the debate on the Second Reading of the Building Safety Bill.
  • Ensuring residents of Castle Hill and the surrounding area were aware of Surrey County Council's plans for traffic calming measures on Castle Hill. This has also highlighted some questions over the transparency of the County Council's consultation platform which I am looking into.
  • As I knock on doors with the local Liberal Democrat team I am continuing to use my Residents' Survey to help me get a clearer picture of the concerns residents have around issues at both a local and national level. If you would like to complete the survey online you can do so here.

Of course, this is just a snapshot of the work that I do - the best way to keep up-to-date with everything is to follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and via the Guildford Liberal Democrat website.

Very best wishes and do take care of yourself and others at this time of increased anxiety. As always, please do get in touch if you have any questions for me or need support with local issues from myself and/or our councillor team.

Z Franklin signature

Zöe Franklin
Liberal Democrat Candidate for Guildford, Cranleigh and our villages

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