York was one of the 10 most unequal cities in the UK in 2016, and it is likely that inequality has grown worse since then. Jobs and wages are out of step with the cost of living. Many are experiencing the effects of a deep economic crisis. There is now a 10-year difference in life expectancy between people who live in the most deprived parts of our city and those people who live in the most affluent areas. Being poor in a place where there is still visible wealth for some feels relatively worse than being poor in a place where everyone experiences deprivation.
Pledge – Bring well-paid jobs to York.
Labour will be enterprising, boost green skills and provide support for start-ups.
We’ll help bring more well-paid jobs with good working conditions long-term to York.
We’ll lead on green skills development, provide support and workspaces for growing businesses and start-ups.
We’ll promote the Good Business Charter and back trade union recognition.
• We’ll stimulate jobs in the green economy. To meet the skills gap in green construction we’ll work with local businesses to establish a Construction Skills Village in York.
• A Labour-run council will reverse the Council’s hands-off approach and forge many partnerships locally and across the region with employers, funders, investors and business organisations (e.g. FSB, LEP).
• We’ll instigate better work and industry across York by connecting with anchor institutions and businesses and being alive to funding opportunities across industrial and regional clusters.
• We’ll focus on a new deal for working people, by bringing more well-paid jobs with good working conditions to York, and providing workspace (in unused buildings) and other support for start-ups. The council will act as a role-model example of a good employer, by offering flexible work for those who need it and taking health and wellbeing seriously.
We’ll instigate changes that will lead to better working lives in York:
• We’ll improve ‘Work with York’ by creating a better ‘work bank’ for council jobs. This will include more flexible and appealing work for council jobs where there are labour shortages.
• We’ll do more to match school leavers, students of all ages and other part-time workers with work opportunities ensuring employers pay the real Living Wage and provide good working conditions.
• We’ll enable empty city-centre spaces to be used in exciting, inventive new ways. We will use all the powers the council has to improve the use of these spaces for work, culture and shopping. For instance, we can help people to complete community asset transfers, we can use compulsory purchase orders when necessary, and we can also explore Creative Land Trusts.
• We’ll create incubator space for businesses in York, particularly in the tech sector.
We’ll develop creative solutions to support the transition to a green economy:
• We’ll create a green tourism scheme to encourage visitors and businesses to reduce their carbon emissions and use green travel to get into and around the city.
• We’ll use our purchasing policy at the council to make better, greener choices (such as buying local) and encourage other business to follow our lead. We’ll ensure procurement identifies and incrementally reduces ‘embedded’ carbon in the goods and services that the council and others buy.
• We will help the circular economy (a waste-free way of doing things) to flourish by providing space, advice, funding and signposting for circular economy businesses. We’ll facilitate and co-ordinate education and training so people working in York better understand what the circular economy really means. We’ll also join the Circular Cities initiatives.
• We’ll collaborate with the Yorkshire and Humber Climate commission and reinvigorate the local York Climate Change Commission, opening this up as an inclusive, public forum.