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JONATHAN FRYER (Liberal Democrat)

PUBLISHED: 20:01 28 April 2010 | UPDATED: 15:56 05 October 2010

JONATHAN FRYER (Liberal Democrat)

POPLAR & LIMEHOUSE

JONATHAN FRYER (Liberal Democrat)

WHICHEVER government gets elected on May 6 is going to have to take tough decisions to confront the financial crisis. But it is not surprising that so many voters would feel more confident if the Lib Dems' Vince Cable were in charge of the economy. There will have to be some cuts. Any politician saying otherwise is telling porkies.

But there are big items that can easily go, such as the replacement of Trident nuclear missiles and Labour's costly and intrusive ID card scheme.

Civil liberties have been whittled away under Labour, on the excuse that this makes us all safe from terrorism, drug traffickers, etc. The Government still does not accept that it made this country vulnerable by entering an illegal war in Iraq.

What we need now is a determined effort to restore Britain's reputation abroad and community cohesion at home. That means showing respect to people of all backgrounds and building a true sense of community in our neighbourhoods.

I have lived in the Poplar & Limehouse constituency for 25 years and love its diversity, though the growing gap between rich and poor is disturbing. So, too, is the level of street crime.

I have been mugged twice by knife-wielding young thugs near my home in recent years, so I understand people's concerns for safety.

We need to have more bobbies on the beat and to provide decent community facilities for young people, to get them off the streets and away from gangs.

A lot of money has been going into schools in Tower Hamlets, but we also need to teach kids strong moral values, the difference between right and wrong and how they can contribute to society as well as achieving their own ambitions. As for older people, Liberal Democrats want to see a move towards free care for the elderly and health services that truly take into account the needs of our ageing population.

In the meantime, the old age pension needs to be raised and the link restored to earnings.

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Jonathan Fryer (Liberal Democrat)


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