What’s needed is someone that has strong roots in our community and has a stake in our future to be a local voice for North Dorset’s in Westminster, and not the other way around. Otherwise we’ll continue to be overlooked and left behind. Pat Osborne
Pat Osborne

Pat Osborne – A local voice for North Dorset

About Pat…

Pat Osborne was born and bred in North Dorset and has lived here pretty much all his life.

He grew up and went to school in Gillingham and now lives down the road in Blandford with his wife Jodie and their two young children.

Pat works as a Transformation Manager for a Dorset based insurance company.

He has served his community as a Town Councillor for the past few years and believes that local people should be arbiters of their own destiny.

He’s Chair of the Blandford Forum Town Council’s Climate Change Working Group and is a founding member of ‘Blandford War on Waste’.

Pat is also the Labour Party’s candidate for the next general election.

Pat says…

“People in North Dorset don’t need someone coming down from London, or Paris, or Brussels, or anywhere else, telling us what’s good for us.

Whether we’ve always lived here, or found home here more recently, we’re quite capable of figuring out what’s best for our communities, and we’re quite capable of standing on our own two feet – so long as we’re given the same chances as everyone else.

All we’re asking for is our fair share of adequately funded public services and regional investment – in line with adequate funding that would be received by properly supported urban communities, or by those communities that are being promised windfalls from the current government because they need their votes to cling to power.

We’ve always proven quite capable of pulling together as a community and doing the rest.

But Conservative and Lib Dem austerity has cut spending on essential public services to the bone, while historically our schools get less money per pupil than some city schools, and per person investment in transport is a fraction compared to the per person spend in London, let alone the billions they’re throwing at HS2.

Meanwhile, house prices are beyond the reach of first-time buyers, and wages are typically much lower than the national average.

With fewer and fewer opportunities, many of our young people are moving away from the towns and villages they grew up in to build a future elsewhere.

Sadly, this also means moving away from the family and friendship networks of mutual support that have developed over many years.

This is a worrying trend that threatens the future sustainability of our communities. But it can be reversed.

What’s needed is someone that has strong roots in our community and has a stake in our future to be a local voice for North Dorset’s in Westminster, and not the other way around. Otherwise we’ll continue to be overlooked and left behind.

That’s what I offer. A local voice for North Dorset.”

Pat’s focus for North Dorset

Boost our local economy

Pat supports:

  • The introduction of regional development banks that will provide a source of capital to support a revival of small-scale manufacturing and enterprise, providing higher-skill, higher-wage jobs.
  • A National Education Service that will support local businesses by promoting apprenticeships and technical education as an equal alternative to universities. This will make the prospect of staying or returning home as attractive, or more attractive, than moving away.
  • Protecting our high streets and town centres by ending post office closures and legislating against bank closures so that the big banks can’t close a branch where there’s a clear local need.

Keep our communities connected

Pat supports:

  • A reversal of cuts to local bus services and investment in new services, entrusting local communities to set fares and decide routes.
  • The protection of free bus passes for pensioners and provision of free bus passes for the under 25s.
  • The introduction of a scrappage scheme for petrol and diesel cars and interest free loans for electric cars for up to 2.5 million people (paid back over 5 years)
  • An investment of £300m for setting up publicly-owned community car-sharing clubs with 30,000 electric cars.
  • Investment in full fibre digital infrastructure as well as our physical transport infrastructure.

Good quality, affordable housing for local people

Pat supports:

  • Labour’s pledge to build 1 million new homes to meet housing need within five years.
  • A local-led, democratic process for deciding what new housing should look like, where it should go, and who it should be for.
  • New housing that prioritises the needs of local people.
  • Investment in the biggest council house building programme in 40 years.

Farming and food

Pat supports:

  • Ongoing support for farming and sustainable land management, including targeted support for marginal farmers and those delivering public goods.
  • Trade deals that are shaped by people’s needs and that protect and enhance current standards and regulations in farming and food production.
  • An Agriculture Act that addresses long-term food security, unfairness within the supply chain, workforce issues, and long-term support for the production of nutritious, good quality British food, while also protecting the future of our environment, wildlife and habitats.
  • The spirit and ambition of the NFUs 2040 net zero programme, while recognising the need to provide further support to farmers to achieve a 2030 target.

Climate change and sustainability

Pat believes that environmental sustainability and tackling climate change needs to be a key focus for everything we do.

He says:

“Whilst we all have a personal responsibility to ourselves and future generations, it’s just not good enough for politicians to go on about the changes we need to make as individuals as if that’s going to fix the mess.

For example, most of us in North Dorset need to run a car to be able to get to and from work, to do everyday things like shopping or visiting friends and family, or to get to the Doctors. And for most of us, our cars will be petrol or diesel.

The vast majority are now acutely aware of the long-term damage we’re contributing to by doing this, but the world we live in doesn’t allow us to make meaningful changes overnight.

So, what’s needed is total systemic change that tackles the biggest offenders first, and also supports ordinary people in making a transition towards a sustainable lifestyle.

But it doesn’t need to cost the Earth to save the Earth, so long as we take the opportunity to invest in developing our own green industries and keep them in public ownership so that profits can be reinvested or redistributed for the public good.

That’s what Labour’s Green Industrial Revolution is all about, and that’s why I support it.”

Brexit

Pat believes that Brexit has gone on too long.

“It’s clear that Westminster politicians can’t reach any kind of agreement. And like most people, I have very little confidence that a general election (which will probably re-elect many of the same people or same type of people) will do very much to change that.

That’s why I’ve come around to the idea that the people, rather than Westminster Politicians, should have the final say on a Brexit withdrawal deal, and that Parliament should be bound to implement whatever decision the people make.”

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