The Case for National Renewal
Little in the UK has improved in the last decade. Citizens’ rights have been eroded. Living standards and life expectancy have declined. There is little sense of a national plan to provide a sustainable, secure and robust economy to support our social expectations. The Union is shattered, and our relationship with our European neighbours has been trashed. This situation cannot continue indefinitely.
To respond, we need a national debate on how our nation is organised and run. ALL has emerged as a collation of civil society groups to examine what the progressive community could add to this debate. We must be clear and outspoken about what we expect from the political parties.
Our ideas come from over two years of debate presented in two key documents: The Citizens’ Declaration and the Guide to Good Government.
Simply, we have spelt out what we want from any government and the changes that will ensure that our democracy actually functions effectively.
There is a great deal of detailed thinking outlined on this website, but we also welcome everyone in civil society to join us in creating a detailed policy framework to underline these demands.
What is Broken?
Governing for the few
For the last decade, we have lived through a government at war with the interests of most people in this country. We have seen attacks on public servants and the NHS, underfunding social care and local councils stripped of necessary resources.
Instead, care and attention have been lavished on the super-rich and the financial sector rather than us, the citizens. After a disastrous free-market budget under Liz Truss, we are all poorer with damage to pensions, higher taxes, inflation and interest rates.
It doesn’t have to be like this because you deserve better.
The last UK government to win over 50% of the popular vote was in 1931. Since then all elections have resulted in a government with fewer people voting for them than against them. The situation in local government is even worse. People distrust politicians, and apathy is the biggest party in the UK. This must change to maintain a healthy democracy and a vibrant country.
The unwritten constitution is in tatters, as politicians without morals do as they please while the PM gets to police the ethics of their own government. We need fair votes which means every vote counts towards change.
Inequality & Economic Decline
2022 was a truly horrendous year, dominated by the arrival of double-digit inflation that drove a 3.3 per cent (or £800 per household) hit to real disposable incomes - the biggest annual fall in a century. We have significant regional inequality and serious differences between generations.
Social mobility is going backwards as your parents’ income and background limit what you can achieve, regardless of your ability. Housing is unfairly distributed and funded. This must change.
We need a fairer society with more equal growth across the country. We need young people to meet their potential to have the education and training opportunities to live their best life, regardless of their parent’s income.
A Future without any plan
The world is less secure than at any time in recent history – war in Europe, energy threats, climate change, loss of biodiversity and failures to regulate for a clean environment. Getting out of this mess as a country means we need a plan. To be able to think and act long-term and to avoid the political potholes of short-term interests.
There is no excuse for not planning for the correct number of teachers and NHS staff or ensuring access to affordable energy. That means we must change the way the UK does government.
It needs a new political culture that develops consensus and works to overcome our country’s challenges rather than scoring cheap points at Prime Minister’s Question Time.
A properly functioning country needs a legal system that works, where no one is above the law and criminals are brought to justice and prosecuted promptly. That means a court system that has the capacity to hear cases in good time and with access to legal representation for all.
It means enough police to protect our communities and ensure that criminals are consistently prosecuted. We need a prison and probation system that actively reduces reoffending. We need regulators with the staff and resources to do their job properly, and we need the tax authorities to have enough staff to end non-payment of tax and tax evasion.
We all need protection from physical, financial and online harms.
What Can Be Done?
Our political system works through parties, but that is not working well. They divide us.
ALL has pulled together what the majority want politics to deliver to build a consensus on where a Progressive government should go. If you agree, add your voice by signing the Citizen’s Declaration.
We will ask all parties to make these policies their priority too.
Under the First-Past-the-Post system, often, your vote fails to count. Only one progressive candidate gives us a better chance of changing the political mix. https://winasone.org.uk/area-finder/
In other cases, you may have to consider Tactical Voting or swapping your vote.
As an activist, you want to make change. ALL wants to focus that energy on a movement to improve and enhance our democracy and make politics work for citizens rather than politicians.
Choosing where to make your intervention is critical. On the Activists pages, you will find ways to endorse, research and decide what will make the most significant difference.
AS CIVIL SOCIETY
Our politics needs a complete overhaul after a decade of decline and corruption. Making the change Britain needs requires us to voice a common message and speak together. We need both better polices and a better way of governing.
The ALL Guide to Good Government is leading the discussion about the national renewal that the country needs. Please endorse the Principles of Good Government and the Citizen’s Declaration here.
Our political system is broken and needs to be fixed. We need a national renewal with actors inside and outside of elected offices creating a new narrative. One that can deliver the transformative change that will give the country back its sense of common purpose.
When the people speak, politicians should listen. And not just to the minority voices in marginal target seats but to the broad sweep of public opinion.
The ALL Citizens’ Declaration and the Guide to Good Government are templates for building agreements and implementation processes. Let us make the country work for everyone.
Show your support and endorse the Declaration and our Principles of Good Government here:
The Citizens Declaration