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  • Article: Mar 17, 2016

    In 2013 just 63.3% of mothers in London were in employment, compared with 72.9% nationally, the lowest level of employment for any UK region

    Since 2012 the cost of a part time nursery place for an under 2 year old has risen by 10.5%, in contrast to an increase of 7.7% nationally

    The number of registered childminders in London has recently fallen by 13%, from 9900 in 2010 to 8585 in 2013

  • Article: Mar 16, 2016

    At Boris Johnson's last Mayor's Question Time Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group examined the Mayor's real record in tackling knife crime over his two terms of office.

    The Mayor made tackling knife crime one of his key pledges back in 2008, claiming he would lead the "fightback" against violent crime.

  • Article: Mar 4, 2016

    Stephen Knight, Liberal Democrat London Assembly Member, speaking after questioning the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) Chairman and Chief Executive at City Hall today said:

    "While no one denies many great successes of the Olympic Park there still remain questions as to whether the best deal has been struck for the taxpayer.

  • Article: Mar 4, 2016

    Caroline Pidgeon, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on this week's decision by TfL to not scrap the Woolwich Ferry, but instead to purchase two new vessels to replace the three existing life-expired craft said:

    "I very much welcome this back down by TfL.

    "In the rush to push ahead with the tolled Silvertown Tunnel and other road crossings TfL were willing to sacrifice the free Woolwich Ferry, which is not only popular locally but incredibly helpful for pedestrians and cyclists.

  • Cllr Jack Cohen being interviewed by the BBC
    Article: Mar 3, 2016
    By Cllr Jack Cohen in Barnet Times

    Barnet Council looks set to increase council tax by just under two per cent. In reality, central government controls the purse strings.

    For 2016/17, councils are limited to a two per cent hike in council tax - so any higher amount triggers a referendum.

    However, the government this time will permit an additional two per cent rise ringfenced for adult social care services. The Conservatives' proposed tax increase uses the ringfenced allowances, so council tax for all other servicer is frozen.

  • Article: Feb 11, 2016
    • Number of incidents of tube delays caused by overcrowding has doubled in the last two years
    • Tube passengers lost 280,355 hours in 2015 due to tube overcrowding - in 2013 tube overcrowding resulted in 130,813 lost customer hours
    • Jubilee Line is the worst London Underground Line for tube delays caused by overcrowding
  • Article: Feb 3, 2016

    The Mayor's decision to extend funding for the work of the charities RedThread and Oasis Youth, which support young victims of knife crime, has been warmly welcomed by Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, who personally urged the Mayor to support these organisations last December. The need to support such organisations was a key recommendation in Caroline's report on tackling knife crime in London, which was published last November.

    In a letter sent to Caroline this week the Mayor has stated that MOPAC (Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime) has now secured funding to maintain the vital services provided by RedThread and their youth workers in London's four Major Trauma Centres for the next three years. Another positive development is that MOPAC will also be funding Oasis Youth enabling them to extend their services and place youth workers in Middlesex Hospital until the end of 2016/17.

    These youth workers provide vital support for young victims of knife crime and other violent offences and help to end the tragic cycle of violence we see too often on our streets.

    The Mayor also accepted another long standing recommendation by Caroline Pidgeon to ensure that MOPAC adopt the 'Cardiff Model' across all A&E's in London. The 'Cardiff Model' is an approach to sharing and using anonymised data on violent offences obtained through A&E admissions to inform and develop crime reduction policies by the police and local authorities. In areas where the Cardiff Model has been implemented there has been a 42% reduction in A&E admissions due to violent crime.

    Welcoming the Mayor's announcement Caroline Pidgeon said:

    "This announcement is incredibly welcome.

    "Sensible and much needed policies to help young victims of knife crime are now being given the support they so desperately needed.

    "Finally every A&E department across London will share anonymised data to help reduce violent crime across the capital."

  • Article: Jan 29, 2016
    • New report recommends a smarter, more flexible system of congestion charging that reflects the level of congestion when a person enters the zone
    • Introduction of an additional diesel levy on the Congestion Charge could be a 'game changer' in tackling London's appalling air pollution
    • Huge potential to encourage a higher take up of the Congestion Charge Autopay system by removing the charge for registering and developing a free, easy to use App
  • Article: Jan 27, 2016

    Building more affordable homes must be the top priority of the Mayor's budget is the central message of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group amendment to the Mayor's draft budget for the next year.

    Their amendment to the Mayor's budget, which will be considered later today (Wednesday 27th January) , sets out ambitious plans to dramatically increase housing investment in London by converting the current Olympic precept, which is typically £20 a year for most householders, into a new 'housing precept'.

  • Article: Jan 21, 2016

    The Mayor's obsession with the New Routemaster is forcing Transport for London to purchase more of the expensive buses for the sole reason of keeping the production line running at Wrightbus it has been revealed today.

    Transport for London's Finance and Policy Committee is set to purchase 30 more New Routemaster buses so as to "enable Wrightbus to maintain the operation of one of the two current production lines" confirming that there is no market for the New Routemaster buses outside of London.

  • Article: Jan 19, 2016

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on Transport for London's withdrawal of controversial plans to close Caledonian tube station for eight months to replace the two lifts said:

    "This U-turn by TfL is a great victory for people power. I congratulate Nigel Scott and the organisers of this excellent campaign and everyone who got behind it.

  • Zack Polanski
    Article: Jan 19, 2016

    The Liberal Democrats have picked youth counsellor and housing campaigner Zack Polanski to fight for the Barnet and Camden seat in City Hall this year.

    Mornington Crescent resident Zack Polanski has worked tirelessly in leading the campaign to save the famous Black Cap pub on Camden High Road and was selected by the local party due to his focus on the difficulties facing private tenants across Barnet and Camden.

  • Article: Dec 21, 2015

    Over a third of hospitals in London are still failing to take part in a scheme which has been proven to dramatically reduce knife crime. The admission that many hospitals are still not sharing anonymous data collected from knife victims was made last week by Stephen Greenhalgh, the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

  • Article: Dec 21, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on Transport for London's confirmation that it will be taking further steps to extend the Bakerloo Line to Elephant and Castle and Lewisham via Old Kent Road, with detailed technical work starting in 2016 said:

    "This is a great Christmas present for many parts of South East London. For far too long South East London had a poor deal in terms of its transport links so it is good news that new steps will be taken in the technical work required to deliver an extension to the Bakerloo Line.

  • Councillor Jack Cohen
    Article: Dec 17, 2015
    By Cllr Jack Cohen in Barnet Press

    "Can robots be the victims of harassment in the workplace?" - this headline caught my eye.

    The article that followed points out that the Bank of England has warned up to 15 million British jobs are under threat from automation.

    The article argues that managing a mixed workforce of both humans and virtual employees throws up a number of ethical issues, but that perhaps robots' entitlement to human rights is a debate for the future.

  • Article: Dec 17, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the commitment that Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe made to her at today's London Assembly Police and Crime Committee that that Police Community Support Officers will be maintained in London and that one Police Constable and one Police Community Support Officer will remain in every ward in every London Borough said:

  • Article: Dec 11, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on figures released today by Transport for London showing that Friday 4th December 2015 was the busiest day ever on the London Underground said:

    "The increasing use of the Tube is a clear sign of London's growth in both its population and popularity as a place to visit. In many respects it is something to celebrate.

  • Councillor Jack Cohen
    Article: Dec 10, 2015
    By Cllr Jack Cohen in Barnet Press

    A normally mild-mannered resident was angry when he attended my ward surgery.
    He brought with him a bagful of road chippings. He was furious, first at the council for, in his words, "the terrible resurfacing of his road" and, secondly, the "appalling lack of response" when he complained.
    Residents across the borough have been up in arms about this particular round of road repairs. I suspect she council was trying to save money.
    However, it is not about money. In my opinion, it's about effective monitoring of contracts. I find residents are more angry about what they perceive as poor workmanship and lack of resposse when they complain to the council.
    Unfortunately, often I don't seem to fare much better when I raise issues with the council. This is something I warned about when the Conservatives began their programme of outsourcing.
    Because private companies are running what was traditionally the job of council staff, the role of a councillor is being diluted. What is more, when I ask for details of contracts, such as the resurfacing of roads, I hit the brick wall of "commercial confidentiality".
    The council plans to outsource more than 90 per cent of its services. It can only get worse.

  • Article: Nov 25, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the Chancellor's announcement in today's Treasury Spending Review that police spending will now rise in line with inflation said:

    "It is welcome news that commonsense has obviously now prevailed and that serious plans to slash the grant to the Metropolitan Police Service have now been dropped by government.

  • Article: Nov 25, 2015

    Stephen Knight, Liberal Democrat London Assembly housing spokesperson, commenting on the Chancellor of the Exchequer's proposals for housing in London which were announced in today's Spending Review said:

    "The Government's housing policies are ultimately flawed as they are stoking demand, when the real issue is the lack of supply of affordable housing.

  • Article: Nov 23, 2015
    • New report reveals the scale of knife crime in London

    • Westminster politicians overlooked knife crime during the recent General Election

    • A range of policies rarely considered by Westminster politicians are now needed to make London safer for young people

    Westminster politicians are hiding from the real facts about the level of knife crime in London and its impact on young people, is the hard hitting finding of a new report on knife crime undertaken by the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Member Caroline Pidgeon.

  • Article: Nov 18, 2015

    The Mayor has today said he will consider a rush hour ban of HGVs on London's roads following questioning at City Hall today by Caroline Pidgeon AM, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson.

    Today's questioning of the Mayor followed the presentation at City Hall of a petition organised by the London Cycling Campaign signed by over 13,000 people, calling for a rush hour ban on HGVs, better designed lorry cabs and stronger enforcement on current safety standards.

  • Article: Nov 12, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on the Mayor's fare proposals for 2016 said:

    "I very much welcome the extension of National Rail free train travel to under 11-year olds, ending a long standing grievance for children living in South London.

    'Under 11s already get free travel on the Transport for London (TfL) network but given that there are fewer tube lines in South London, children living South of the river have missed out for too long."

  • Article: Nov 9, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on reports in today's Financial Times that TfL is paying 500 additional workers £1.5 million a month since September for a new Night Tube that will not start until next year said:

    "Soon the Mayor will be announcing the fare changes for next year and we will discover the real price that London commuters will have to pay for the long list of the Mayor's financial blunders and vanity projects.

  • Article: Nov 4, 2015

    "Making Oxford Street a place to be enjoyed, not endured" - Stephen Knight

    Petition calling for Mayor and Westminster to pedestrianise Oxford Street by 2020 presented to the Mayor of London today

    A petition calling for the pedestrianiation of Oxford Street by 2020 was presented today to the Mayor of London by Stephen Knight, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly environment spokesperson.

  • Article: Nov 2, 2015

    Stephen Knight AM, Liberal Democrat London Assembly economics spokesperson, commenting on today's announcement of an increase in the London Living Wage said:

    "I welcome the increase to £9.40 an hour, and I obviously welcome any new employer who signs up to pay the London Living Wage.

    "However the big picture is that the number of Londoners paid less than the London Living Wage has soared during Boris Johnson's time as Mayor of London. The estimated number of employees paid less than the Living Wage has increased by more than 50% since 2008 and now stands at over 900,000 people.

  • Article: Nov 2, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on today's announcement that Lambeth council and the Garden Bridge Trust have reached an agreement over the public funding contribution from TfL towards the construction of the Garden Bridge said:

    "While I welcome a reduction in Transport for London's payment towards the Garden Bridge, today's announcement simply raises more questions than it answers, especially in light of the continued evasiveness by the Mayor of London and TfL in answering Mayoral Questions, or responding to freedom of information requests.

  • Councillor Jack Cohen
    Article: Oct 31, 2015
    By Cllr Jack Cohen in Barnet Press

    Barnet's Conservative-run council has unveiled proposals for the future of the borough libraries. It makes for grim reading.

    It is true no library will close but the reality is many will be shrunk to shadows of their former selves.

    Take my own local library in Childs Hill. The plan is to reduce the opening hours to 15 hours a week. It is currently open five days a week. This means it will be open just three hours a day.

  • Article: Oct 30, 2015

    At a time when the Met is facing serious budget pressures London's football teams are forcing the Metropolitan Police Service to pick up a policing bill of over £4 million a year.

    Following a written question to the Mayor of London it has been revealed by Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, that between the start of last year's football season and May of this year the cost of policing outside football stadiums generated a bill of £4.2 million for the Met.

  • Document: Oct 26, 2015
    59.5 KiB text or word processing document

    The minutes of our last AGM held on 25 November 2014

  • Document: Oct 26, 2015
    40 KiB text or word processing document

    Details of what's involved in being an officer of the Local party, a memebr of the Committee or a Conference representative

  • Document: Oct 26, 2015
    34.5 KiB text or word processing document

    The form if you want to stand for the Committee or to be a conference representative for 2016

  • Document: Oct 26, 2015
    894.86 KiB drawing or desktop publishing document

    A newsletter with reports from the Chair of the Local party, our Lib Dem councillor and Lord Monroe Palmer

  • Document: Oct 26, 2015
    25 KiB text or word processing document

    The Agenda for the Annual General Meting on 16 November 2015

  • Article: Oct 21, 2015

    Stephen Knight AM, Liberal Democrat London Assembly environment spokesperson, commenting on the Mayor's replies to extensive questioning he faced at today's Mayor's Question Time on 'dieselgate' and the use of 'defeat device' software to manipulate emission test vehicles said:

    ""Today the Mayor has admitted he hasn't got a clue as to how many diesel cars are on London's roads that have software creating fiddled emission results.

  • Article: Oct 15, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on reports that talks over an all-night Tube in London have broken up without agreement and the new service will not come in this year said:

    "These delays are a real set back, especially for businesses that are part of London's night time economy.

    "The Mayor made a critical mistake in announcing a start date when a number of key issues were far from being resolved. By prematurely announcing a specific date he strengthened the unions' negotiating position.

    "For the Mayor to now say he is 'relaxed' about the start date for a new service is simply a desperate attempt to cover up for his past blunder. The farce of a delayed Night Tube is of the Mayor's making."


  • Article: Oct 15, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on today's report,'Safer Together', written by the RSA, which sets out immense budget pressures facing the Metropolitan Police Service in future years said:

    "I welcome this report, as it sets out very clearly the challenges the Metropolitan Police Service now faces.

  • Article: Oct 13, 2015

    Stephen Knight, Liberal Democrat London Assembly economic spokesperson, commenting on today's announcement on permitted development rights for office buildings said:

    "I am shocked at the Mayor of London's enthusiastic support for these changes.

    "The announcement might keep in place respite for the City of London and the London Central Activities Zone, but it will force businesses out of London's many town centres, especially in outer London.

  • Article: Sep 28, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the discovering by Architects' Journal that the earlier version of the audit review into the awarding of design contact to Heatherwick Studio was significantly different and far more critical to the published version said:

  • Article: Sep 25, 2015

    Stephen Knight, Liberal Democrat London Assembly environment spokesperson, commenting on the diesel emissions fixing scandal facing Volkswagen said:

    "The unfolding VW emissions fixing scandal is clearly demonstrating that, despite what motor manufacturers have been claiming, there is no such thing as a clean diesel car. Real-world tests show that so-called "clean" (Euro 6) diesels actually emit many times more poisonous gases than they are legally entitled to.

  • Article: Sep 18, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the announcement by Transport for London that they will install opening windows on the new routemasters at a further cost of around £2 million said:

    "Anything to make travelling on the new routemasters more bearable during the Summer is obviously welcome. These buses are quite frankly a cauldron on wheels during hot weather.

  • Article: Sep 16, 2015

    Commenting on a new report by sustainable transport group Transport & Environment, which shows that every major car manufacturer is selling diesel cars that fail to meet EU air pollution limits on the road in Europe, whilst selling cars with better exhaust treatment systems and lower emissions in the US, Liberal Democrat London Assembly environment spokesperson Stephen Knight AM said:

  • Article: Sep 16, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the internal audit of the procurement design and development services for the Garden Bridge said:

    "This audit has sadly not been thorough and forensic.

    "While it rightly highlights a number of areas where the process for awarding contracts needs to improve the audit is ultimately incomplete due to TfL destroying vital records.

    "It is staggering that despite serious questions about the evaluation scores for the tenders TfL thought there was nothing wrong in destroying vital documentation just before the audit was set to take place.

    "TfL's claim that the audit has not found any evidence that value for money was not provided is nonsensical when vital documents could not be examined.

    "TfL should be providing evidence that value for money was actually delivered. That test has not been met by this audit."

  • Article: Sep 4, 2015
    • New figures reveal the financial year 2014/15 saw the highest number of tube delays due to overcrowding in any year since 2010
    • Figures for the first three months of 2015/16 also reveal high levels of Tube delays due to overcrowding on the Central, Jubilee, Northern and Victoria lines

    The Mayor of London has finally released information showing that Tube delays caused by overcrowding reached a five-year high during the financial year 2014/15.

  • Councillor Jack Cohen
    Article: Sep 4, 2015
    By Cllr Jack Cohen in Barnet Press

    It may have been August, but there was no let-up in the number of complaints from residents popping up in my in-box.

    Planning issues, of course, come out on top, but there are also the usual grumbles about litter, broken pavements and refuse collection - and there is a lot of email traffic about the Brent Cross redevelopment.

  • Article: Sep 2, 2015

    Stephen Knight AM, Liberal Democrat London Assembly economic spokesperson, commenting on the decision by Oliver Bonas to become the first high street fashion chain in the UK to become an accredited Living Wage employer, said:

    "The retail sector is sadly dominated by very low paying, insecure jobs. It is therefore significant when a high street fashion retailer like Oliver Bonas with stores across London in places such as Battersea, Cheapside, Clapham, Crouch End, Dulwich, Ealing, Kingston, Hampstead, Islington, Kensington, Putney and Richmond pledges to pay the London Living Wage."

  • Article: Aug 27, 2015

    Caroline Pidgeon AM, Liberal Democrat London Assembly transport spokesperson, commenting on the announcement that the launch of the Night Tube has been deferred said:

    "This is a big climb down for the Mayor. His retreat is entirely due to his error in setting a specific start date before all the staffing arrangements and other issues had been settled.

  • Article: Aug 6, 2015

    Cuts in the frequency of 17 weekend Night Bus services must now be put on hold if the Night Tube service does not commence from the 12th September, is the clear message that has been sent to the Mayor by Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group.

    Back in the Summer Transport for London (TfL) proposed reduced weekend Night Bus services on 17 bus routes based on their forecast that some passengers will choose to use the Night Tube instead.

  • Article: Aug 5, 2015

    Transport for London have admitted that they have no understanding of the real levels of pollution created by the new Routemasters despite repeated claims that they are the 'most environmentally friendly bus of its kind.'

    In response to a freedom of information request TfL have today conceded that no pollution checks have been undertaken of the new Routemasters when they operate in their non hybrid mode and are entirely dependent on their diesel engines. The failure to undertake such testing is significant following the recent discovery that 80 of the new Routemasters are running entirely on diesel generators.

  • Article: Jul 31, 2015

    Transport for London has now accumulated almost £170 million from money left on unused Oyster cards it has been revealed today. The amount is made up from deposits (£83.2 million) and the Pay As You Go balances (£85.6 million) left on Oyster cards which have not been used for over a year.

    The cash pile from unused Oyster cards has been steadily growing since the start of Oyster in 2003. A recent written Mayoral question asked by Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, revealed that when Boris Johnson first became Mayor in May 2008 the amounts left on dormant Oyster cards was just £4.25 million in Pay As You Go balances and £2.81 million in deposits.