Please find below a full list of candidates seeking nominations from branches to stand for roles at the Oxford & District Labour Party AGM on 11th March 2022. Each candidate has been invited to submit a statement of up to 200 words. These statements will be uploaded within three working days.

Officers with voting rights on the Executive Committee

Chair and deputy treasurer:

Jabu Nala-Hartley and Jane Stockton (Job Share)

In asking you to nominate us to continue in the role of Co-Chairs, we believe we have fulfilled our promise made last year to ensure that party meetings are run efficiently and are welcoming and safe spaces for all members. Under our chairing, members have been able to express views, opinions and disagreements in a comradely atmosphere. Working together, using our complementary skills and experience, we have reached across the whole District, so that voices from all communities are included and listened to. When needed, we have shown strong leadership in resolving difficulties to reach amicable and fair solutions. Most importantly we have ensured that ODLP has had a unity of purpose in promoting Labour’s socialist values, raising Labour’s profile locally, and campaigning to elect Labour city and county councillors.

Next year, attacks by the government on living standards, and the challenges we face on housing and the environment mean that our Labour run councils, supported by a strong local party is even more important than ever. We would like the opportunity to build on our first year in this role, to do everything we can to help improve the lives of the people of Oxford and the surrounding District.


Ann Black

This has been another strange year.  Annual conference, the south-east regional conference, a few branch meetings and a dinner were held in person before progress towards normality was set back by Omicron.  Throughout I have tried to maintain our democratic structures, ensuring that regular meetings are scheduled, papers are circulated, deadlines are met and rules are followed.  I hope that 2022 brings greater freedom.

Together with other officers I helped to finalise candidate selections for the deferred city elections and the county-wide elections.  Our organiser and his assistants co-ordinated an exceptionally complicated set of contests and the results were a tribute to them and the indefatigable activists, though sadly a few excellent candidates just missed out.  Labour maintained firm control of the city and became part of the ruling county coalition.  I also worked with the women’s officer and the disability officers on another successful bid to the NEC development fund to assist members who are deaf or hard of hearing.

If re-elected I pledge to continue working with other officers, councillors, our organiser and our MP on behalf of every member of the local party, and to provide stability as and when we emerge into daylight.


Alex Hollingsworth

I am standing for re-election as Treasurer for Oxford and District Labour Party, having served in that position for the since 2013, and as Treasurer for Oxford West and Abingdon CLP from 2010.

I managed the merger of the finances of the two CLPs, and have ensured that ODLP has the ongoing financial stability needed to fulfil our campaigning and political objectives. It is because we have made sure that we run our finances soundly that we have been able to afford an office, an organiser, leaflets and newsletters not just for elections but all year round. The challenges of the last two years have shown how important it has been to plan for disruption to our fundraising and for increases in costs.

The role of Treasurer is to ensure that the funds are always available for ODLP’s priorities as set by our members; that is what I will continue to do if re-elected.

Policy officer:

Linda Smith

I am seeking support for re-election as Policy Officer of ODLP. I regularly attend the Executive Committee where I do my best to contribute towards a well run local labour party which is outward looking, supportive of our elected representatives and focused on campaigning to win elections. I will have organised three on-line policy discussions open to all members this year and I commit to organise at least as many again next year.

Maurice O’Donoghue 

I am standing for the role of Policy Officer for ODLP because I believe that we need to be much more focussed on policy direction across the two CLP’s. This is a critical time for our party with some tough policy decisions coming our way around nationality, policing, the NHS and ways that we can tackle poverty and disadvantages within our communities. I would like to open up debate and discussion around these key issues and ensure that members are afforded the opportunity to get involved.  We need to hold this Government to account and be policy ready for the next General Election.

My background in grassroots politics locally will hold me in good stead as I have spent time reaching out to those who are most vulnerable within our communities, assisting those in need and with local food associations, for example.

I have time to commit to this role and will be energised to ensure that there is wide engagement with members so that policy becomes meaningful and will make a difference.  There is much to do and so I am seeking your support, I won’t let you down.

Vice-chair (Oxford East

Shaista Aziz

As we enter the third year of the pandemic, the increased poverty and challenges working class communities across our city face mean it’s even more vital ODLP wins and holds as many seats as possible in the May election and beyond. I have a long track record of working on campaigns that unite people and communities. I have decades of experience as a national anti-racism and equalities campaigner and a violence against women and girls campaigner and practitioner. My national viral anti-racism ‘three Hijabis’ campaign to tackle racism in football secured 1.2 million signatures and a pledge from the prime minister, forty eight hours after our petition launch, to carry out out our demands.  We urgently need a united ODLP winning elections and changing peoples lives. As a city councillor, and cabinet member for Inclusive Communities, co-founder Labour Homelessness Campaign, and the Fabian Women’s Network Vice Chair, I campaign for change. Alongside residents, members, councillors, and officers I’ve developed work on domestic abuse, anti-racism and equalities. I advocate for all communities. As Vice Chair I would use my leadership skills to ensure our CLP is inclusive and working for communities who need Labour and the Labour movement more than ever.

Caroline Raine

I am seeking nomination as vice chair (Oxford East) of Oxford & District Labour Party. I have previously served on the Executive Committee as a branch delegate and am currently vice chair of the Rose Hill, Iffley, Littlemore and Cowley branch. My experience of chairing ranges from facilitating small meetings to coordinating large public events. My aim is always to ensure meetings are conducted in a comradely manner so that everyone feels comfortable participating. I also seek to run meetings efficiently, according to standing orders and agreed timings. As a trade union activist and organiser, I learned much about meeting procedures and effective and inclusive chairing.  I also learned to value team work, which would be crucial as an EC member. Since retiring from full-time work I have become increasingly involved in local community campaigns. I believe community engagement should be at the heart of what we do in the Party if we are to maximise our relevance and effectiveness within Oxford’s diverse population. I want to keep our Party strong, democratic, welcoming and inclusive as it organises and campaigns for the socialist policies our communities need.

Vice-chair (Oxford West & Abingdon)

Phil Bloomer

I am a lifelong member of the Labour Party, and have lived in West Oxford and Botley for the last 27 years. I have stood as a local councillor twice (Wheatley in 2021, and Kennington previously), and as a European Parliamentary candidate for the South East, alongside Anneliese, in 2013.

I’m an inclusive, appreciative chair dedicated to fair treatment for all. As a Vice-Chair I would be committed to sustaining a dynamic and productive dialogue in our constituency on Party policy, and practical planning to win and retain power for socialism.

I have worked for social justice all my life. I currently work for the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre. We work with unions and civil society around the world to take up over 1000 allegations of human rights abuse by business each year. We collaborate with allies to assert labour and women’s rights, fight discrimination, and reverse climate breakdown.

Liz Peretz

I wish to stand as Vice Chair of O&DLP for Oxford West and Abingdon.

As members know, I have a passionate interest, and not a little knowledge, in 2 areas  – our right to public services, especially health and social care, and the rights of migrants. Both are under extreme pressure from this government. Also, as a retired local government officer and NHS manager I am determined to fight the deliberate destruction of these bodies – Local government and the NHS –  that I believe are absolutely central to our society. We need to address the democratic deficit in our communities and fight climate change in a way that preserves dignity at work and involves Trades Unions. This all requires imagination, determination, and the strong moral compass of a Labour Socialist.  I believe in equality (not ‘levelling up) and in a society which is kind, inclusive, tolerant and just – a world of public luxury and private sufficiency in the words of George Monbiot. I hope to see this in my lifetime. I hope you’ll vote for me.

Membership officer

Julia Drown

I am keen to support our local party and to increase membership in our party. I would work to get membership recruitment into all our campaigning as well as doing the administration of membership secretary. I have experience as:

  • County Councillor for seven years, including time as Vice-Chair of the group and Spokesperson/Deputy Spokesperson on Social Services.
  • MP for eight years, independent-minded refusing to support the introduction of NHS trusts, some asylum seeker changes and benefit changes, though supporting the Labour Government on all the good things done including introducing tax credits, sure start centres, new NHS facilities and more investment in the NHS Education and Local Government. I was known for my work on women’s issues, health and international aid.
  • Worked for the NHS for eleven years
  • Former public sector accountant
  • Currently working tackling domestic abuse as Patron of Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse.

If elected as membership secretary, I would deal promptly with membership enquiries to keep our records as up-to-date as possible and provide regular reports on membership numbers to GC and EC.

Julio C. Gonzalez & Robert Lemkin (Job-Share)

We both have:
  • extensive experience of being membership officers in our respective branches.
  • a long track record of fostering an active and inclusive membership both at branch and constituency level.
  • experience in the data protection (GPDR) issues. As soon as MemberCentre is running again, we will get and keep local data safe.
  • been active trade unionists (UNISON and BECTU) for over 30 years. Julio served as TULO on the Executive Committee.

At a time of falling Labour membership, we will help branches with their outreach to retain members. We are particularly aware of losing our younger activists who have joined in recent years. As union members we will encourage our huge affiliated supporter base into full Labour membership and into leadership positions. We will work with our equality officers to strengthen and, where possible, effectively target their all-important work.

We will support new member welcome sessions and work closely with branch membership officers by means of regular meetings as a group and one-to-one level.

We are delighted to build on the legacy of Geoff Taylor, our outgoing membership officer. Like him, we believe an active membership is absolutely crucial for the health and electoral strength of our party.

Women’s officer:

Erica Davis & Imogen Thomas (Job-Share)

Erica would be delighted to serve for a further year as Women’s Officer and is pleased to be joined by Imogen as a job share. As an LGBT Councillor with an intermittent disability, Imogen has championed intersectional feminism on Council.

Together we will be able to carry on with our local campaigns on Women’s Safety, the Gender Pay Gap and the importance of ensuring that we are trans women inclusive. We want to continue to bring women together to engage, empower and enable.

We’ve been proud of the strides forward Oxford Labour women have made in the last year. Highlights have included our event on Intersectionality at this year’s IWC, Erica’s work around social care, and campaigning to end violence against women and girls.

Strong communication between Labour women and our Women’s Conference delegates has been key, and if elected we would prioritise these democratic channels to ensure the voices of all our wonderful Labour women are heard.

BAME officer

Becky Boumelha and Imade Edosomwan (Job Share)
This year we were proud to:
– Work with members to win better procedures to ensure diversity in the council cabinets, and support the election of the first three Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority councillors to the city cabinet in a decade. We were proud this rule change was passed at national conference.
– Organise two BAME members meetings and constructed an all members meeting on Islamophobia, Race and Class in the Labour Party to discuss what Oxford Labour can do empower marginalised communities and amplify their voice in our Party
– Build on work with the Oxford Coalition of Black Communities and Communities of Colour in response to the Black Lives Matter movement to coordinate anti-racist work with community groups across the city
– Increase BAME membership in the Party and support BAME members to stand for city and county council elections
– Work in the community including with the Community Action foodbank, and with detention, immigration and prison casework
– Support the great work led by Jabu Nala-Hartley to improve the vaccine uptake in Black and working class communities in Oxford
We’d love your support to keep building on this work. Thank you.

Ajaz Rehman

I would like this opportunity to really develop BAME representation within ODLP and to encourage existing BAME members to really take a more active role within the party.

I want to organise and encourage existing members to reach out within their groups and reinvigorate communities to participate on more regular basis, so their voices and concerns are heard and acted upon. That engagement and sense of belonging is vital to build trust and confidence for communities to be involved and feel they are part of society.

It is high time all communities are given an opportunity to speak for themselves and not be spoken on behalf of. That would be my main objective.

Give back the power to communities

I have worked within the local Muslim community for many years. I was a street champion with the Oxford Hub for 2 areas.

I have set up and ran fitness classes for children.  I really enjoy working within groups and gain immense satisfaction in assisting, but I believe our role is to build platforms for people so the space belongs to them.

Please support my nomination and give back our communities their voice.

Disability officer

Jesse Erlam and Marie Tidball (Job Share)

We are standing for re-election as co-disability officers for Oxford and District Labour Party because we believe that the advocacy for disabled people’s rights is more important than ever.

In Autumn 2021 we put in a successful bid to the NEC for funding on behalf of the District Party, that enables the OtterAi application to be used in ward and constituency party meetings, enabling the transcription of events for deaf and hard of hearing party members.

We regularly brief City and County Council Cabinet members on local and national issues affecting disabled people.

We will continue to support all disabled candidates who stand for County Council and City Council elections and will do further work to encourage others, through the Oxford Labour Disability Network.

We are also organising a Disability Policy Forum event for EC Comrades in February and planning a training session on Media Communications and Broadcast for Disabled members in March.

With the COVID-19 pandemic still causing ill health and disruption to many disabled people’s lives, we will work to ensure that Labour Party policy supports disabled people’s rights, at this critical time.

Abdul Rahman

I have been a Labour party and union activist since my teens. I have worked at the John Radcliffe hospital and Churchill and I have been a senior steward. Because of my disability I have always been keenly interested in supporting disabled colleagues in their fight for fair treatment at work. In return I have had their support. Today I hold positions on UNISON’s National Disabled Members Committee and our National Black Members’ Committee.

I have benefited from union education and training on the rights of disabled workers. Working people need unions and need to get political. Disabled people feel the impact of the cost of living crisis before anyone else. Over 1000 of my work mates pay into the union affiliated political fund which goes to Labour and I’m keen to translate that into active involvement in Oxford Labour to support the fight for justice for disabled people outside the workplace as well as at work. I am strongly committed to work with other equalities officers, councillors and union colleagues.

LGBT+ officer

Sarah Stephenson-Hunter & Paula Dunne (Job Share)

We are asking for your support by electing us as your co-LGBT+ Officers for the ODLP. Sarah (she/her) is a disabled trans woman who is Trans Lead at the University of Oxford and a passionate LGBT+ advocate and campaigner. She speaks regularly on these issues both nationally and locally including at a local trade union branch during Pride Month. Paula (she/they) is a member of Oxford Pride and speaks up for LGBTQ+ rights in the City Council where she is also a co-chair of an LGBTQ+ working group.

We are against all forms of discrimination, and if elected we would push the local party to take more concrete steps to stand in solidarity with our community. We also want to celebrate our diverse siblings and platform LGBTQ+ voices from our beautiful city.

If elected, we will continue to work with local organisations and charities to enrich and uplift the lives of the entire local LGBT+ community. We will work closely with other Equalities Officers in ODLP to make our work intersectional and inclusive.

Youth and student officer

Lizzy Diggins

I am standing for Youth and Student Officer to ensure Oxford Labour is a welcoming, friendly and tolerant space for young members. I will run events, deliver regular communications, and be a friendly face. As OULC co-chair, I organised speaker events and hosted discussion socials — I will use this experience to build an active young Labour group of residents and students from both universities. As a young councillor myself, I want to encourage younger members to actively participate in the local party, standing for positions and office. I will ensure members are safeguarded at events, following party guidelines. Please vote for me to ensure a welcoming, friendly and tolerant environment for young members.

Nekisa Gholami-Babaahmady

Thanks so very much for electing me as your Youth Officer last year. I am re-running this year because above all else I am a socialist and I believe in an unapologetically young Labour. I am your current South East Rep on Young Labour a position which I intend to stand for once again.

Young workers are set to be hit hardest in the coming poverty crisis. Since my appointment as your Youth Officer I have had one to one meetings and have mentored many young members across both CLP’s and across the South East.

Real activism is about going out there and fighting for a better world! Yet so often our flames of hope die as we as young people live desperately on zero hour contracts and poor wages leaving us with little hope for a better future.

As a proud member of Unite I will continue to encourage young members in Oxford to join a Union. Please vote for me and I will ensure that your voice as young labour is clearly heard.

Trade union liaison officer

Mark Ladbrooke

The Oxford and District Labour Party can be proud of our work: challenging ‘fire and rehire’ (attacks on pay and conditions), calling for adequate financial and PPE support during the pandemic, backing union campaigns and disputes to defend workplace pensions and against the increasingly precarious employment practices which have a particular impact on women, black, disabled and young workers.

On top of this is our firm commitment to defend and promote our Labour Council’s Living Wage of £10.50 an hour (about £20,000 a year for full time work). Its not enough but at least provides an income floor in some 45 local employers and is the foundation for union organising.

This trade union liaison work has seen increasingly strong engagement with local branches of our affiliated unions and their worker delegates some of whom have got involved politically ensuring the concerns of working people are heard in our council chambers not as supplicants but as decision makers. In the process we have won political support from workers and secured union funding to back our election campaigns.

Let’s build on this work – please back me, Mark Ladbrooke, to continue the work of TULO.

Social media officer

Nick Walker

I’ve been helping the Labour Party in Oxford with social media initiatives since 2017. During this time I’ve been particularly active in helping our council candidates to make short videos to use in their social media campaigns.

If selected as our social media officer, I will aim to roll out training and best practice for effective social media campaigning including creating effective videos, for as many of our candidates as possible, to help them get their key messages across. More generally I will support our organiser and the Campaign Committee to plan an effective social media campaign to raise funds, encourage young people to register to vote, to get as many of our supporters as possible to sign-up for postal votes and to get out the vote on election day.

Social media is not a replacement for our doorstep campaigning, which I’m a big fan of, but Labour does need to improve its game on social media so we can get our messages across and compete with our political opponents.

I hope you will consider me for this role.

Assistant secretary

Felicity Leary

While Johnson and the Tories partied in Downing Street, their disastrous policy response to the global pandemic has resulted in tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths. Now we face a cost of living crisis as they try to make us pay for their mess. With the climate emergency threatening all of us, we need a government capable of responding to the challenges the world faces. More than ever, we need the Labour Party to oppose the Tories’ divisive agenda and offer an alternative. I am re-standing for the role of Assistant Secretary as I am proud to have been part of the Executive Committee and everything that we have achieved in Oxford during another difficult year. I enjoy playing an active role on the EC and assisting with the organisation of CLP meetings, making room bookings (hopefully again before long) and taking minutes. I manage the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford, having previously worked in city government and for a climate action network. I am a member of Unite and currently the Secretary of Osney and St Thomas Labour Party Branch. With your support, I will continue to help keep our party strong, democratic, welcoming and effective.

Fundraising officer

John Tanner

The Tories always have more cash than Labour. I want to change that. We need to employ more organisers, run more socialist campaigns and get more votes for Labour candidates. Thanks to your generosity I helped raise over £2,300 at our virtual AMM and more at James Fry’s dinner in December.

I have a track record of successfully raising funds in and out of lockdowns. I will promote raffles, auctions, fund-raising dinners and the 200 Club so that everyone, whatever their income, can take part. Every pound in Labour’s bucket is a nail in the coffin of Tory Britain.

Trade union executive committee places:

Keely Good

I’ve held this position for the past year and have consistently attended meetings, contributed, worked with comrades and spoken up for the interests of workers and those with less power in our society. I’ve been a library assistant and UNISON trade unionist for several years.I believe in unions and socialists working together for a fairer country and world, and that all decision-making bodies must facilitate women’s greater participation to ensure our voices and experiences are heard at all levels.Other bodies I participate in besides being the Branch Secretary of my UNISON branch include the Labour Party Local Government Committee, Oxford & District Trades Union Council, UNISON Higher Education forums, UNISON Publicity and Campaigning Committee and UNISON Labour Link Committee.

During the difficult period of the pandemic, I have consistently attended AMMs and meetings of my branch (Cowley Crescent), participated fully as a trade union GC delegate, and pressured my employer to adopt the Oxford Living Wage and end detrimental outsourcing and other attacks on workers.

Please re-elect me to enable me to continue the important work of ensuring workers’ voices are heard loud and clear, both in our Party and in our society.

Delegates to Annual Conference, Liverpool, 24/28 September 2022 – two per constituency, of whom at least one must be a woman, and all must have joined the party six months before the registration date, probably in June 2022.

Oxford East

Shaista Aziz

I’m standing to be elected as delegate to Labour Conference to represent the voices of members and the communities being harmed the most by a extreme right wing, nativist, and anti-democratic government, making the lives of working people harder by the day across our city, county and country.

As we enter the third year of the pandemic, the increased poverty and challenges working class communities across our city and county face mean it’s even more vital we have strong Labour leadership at city and county level and a National labour government.
Local government and Labour run councils are on the frontline of responding to increased inequalities and attacks on marginalised people and communities by a cruel and undemocratic government.

As a city councillor, and cabinet member for Inclusive Communities, co-founder Labour Homelessness Campaign, and the Fabian Women’s Network Vice Chair, I campaign for change. Alongside residents, members, councillors, and officers I’ve developed work on domestic abuse, anti-racism and equalities. I advocate for all communities. If elected as a delegate, I would be honoured to represent our CLP, members and labour values of justice and equality for all.

James Cullis

My name is James Cullis, I am an active member in the  Greater Marston  branch, I am  a post-graduate student at Christ Church and I would Like to be your delegate  in  Liverpool athe September party conference.  Before coming to Oxford, I was active in Lewes, working on both the 2015 campaign, with Lloyd Russel-Moyle, and 2017 campaign with Daniel Chapman. I also delivered leaflets in East Brighton in the by-election caused by Lloyd becoming an MP, won by Nancy Platts.

Broadly, I see myself as a social democrat. I want a majority Labour Government.  Social Democracy is about good public services, a well-functioning society, a just economy and a respect for human dignity and the rule of law.  Recent discussions have tended to assume that the ONLY thing that matters in a society are individual rights and freedom, yet society is much more than a collection of rights and a Labour Government can champion a society of the common good, a society where the public economy is an economy for those at the bottom and at the top, a society that values hard work and mutual respect. That is social democracy. That is LABOUR.

Paula Dunne

I have been a member of the Labour Party for over five years and have been an active member for the past two years. Last year, I was elected a City Councillor, a co-TULO and have been a co-LGBT Officer for the past seven months. I have always fought against all forms of oppression, and I am not afraid to speak up when I see injustice. I would love the opportunity to attend the National Conference and would make sure to represent ODLP and make sure our collective voice is heard.

Jabu Nala-Hartley

With Covid-19 Pandemic still hovering above all of us. If elected as a conference delegate of the ODLP, I will work for unity and restoration. Encouraging our members to remember that we need a strong party that will act as one to defeat the opposition.
My record speaks for itself when it comes to building alliances. I have empowered communities to build strong relationships with our party through campaigns like the Oxford Living Wage, Why Vaccinate in the BAME communities. Working with SHA on health issues. Delivering food during the pandemic, Standing on anti- racist platforms. Co-chairing the Labour Party in Oxford.

Oxford West & Abingdon

Erica Davis

I am a committed socialist born and brought up in industrial South Wales but have lived in Oxford for over 30 years. I am currently your Women’s Officer. I am seeking your nomination for conference delegate because I am passionate about ensuring that Labour wins at the dispatch box come the next General Election and in order to do that we need to be ready. Conference gives us an opportunity to shape policy and prepare for the future. My background in Health and Social Care obviously means that I have a commitment to fixing and reshaping a broken welfare state. This disastrous Conservative Government has failed the people of this country abysmally and its days in office are numbered. If selected I will ensure that your voice is heard and the issues that you are concerned about are considered. Being a delegate at conference will be a great honour and it will be a real privilege to enable members to have a voice. I hope you will support me and look forward to representing you.

Bart van Es

I joined the Labour party when I was a teenager and have always passionately believed in its values. I have experience as a Professor at Oxford University, a manager within education, a public author, and as a campaigner on issues including the environment and racial equality. In recent years, with my children having left home, I have become more active again within the party and I am now standing as a candidate for the City Council. I want to be part of a well-organised, electable Labour Party that sets out to tackle the great twin problems of our age: the climate crisis and social and health inequality. As delegate to the annual party conference I would work hard to communicate the beliefs, concerns, and priorities of Oxford Labour members. I think I would also learn a great deal that I could bring back to Oxford. With a General Election fast approaching, it would be an enormous privilege and an exciting opportunity to be there in Liverpool. I hope you will feel able to give me your vote.

Sarah Stephenson-Hunter

I re-joined the party in December 2019 after the devastating result of the general election with a renewed passion for working alongside fellow members nationally and locally to fight for justice, equality and fairness for all in our society but especially those from repressed minority groups such as people with disabilities, those in the LGBQ+ community and women.

I have served for the past year as co LGBT Officer, and this has given me invaluable experience of representing members on the Executive Committee.  I was elected as a GC delegate for my previous branch, Hinksey Park and have just been elected as branch Chair and GC delegate for my new branch, Kidlington and yarnton. I also stood for selection as a City and County Council candidate for last years local elections and although not ultimately selected I was able to gain a deeper understanding of a number of local concerns and forge strong links with members from a range of backgrounds.

This would be my first time at National conference and I would work hard to ensure that the concerns of OXWAB members were raised and the voices of the most marginalised groups were heard.

Observers to Oxfordshire County Labour Group (two per constituency including at least one woman):

Oxford East

Roushin Bagdash

I am standing as an observer for the Oxford and Oxfordshire County Council Labour Groups.

I think it’s exceptionally important, as a BAME member and activist, that we have a thorough understanding of how the Labour Groups work as well as supporting Labour councillors’ election campaign by distributing leaflets, door-knocking, and street campaigning.

I am an activist who campaigned tirelessly for Oxford Living wage, Black Lives Matter, Anti Racist City, and ‘Why Vaccinate’ in BAME communities. And this year, I will be serving the Greater Headington Labour Branch as Chair.

I work in Connection Support covering Oxford and Oxfordshire as Deputy Team Manager for two projects, the Refugee Scheme and Asylum Seekers Project. My work has given me a good knowledge of many voluntary sectors and statutory agencies which are invaluable to making changes in building a fairer and more inclusive society that serves us all.

If elected to the LGC, I will do my best to attract and involve more BAME members in the selection of Labour candidates for the 2024 City Council election and 2025 County election to guarantee that they reflect the City’s and County’s cultural and ethnic diversity. I would be grateful for your support

Gerard Ward

I am seeking nomination as an observer to the Oxfordshire County Council Labour Group. I work part-time as an Associate Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University and am a UCU member. Working part-time has enabled me to spend more time on vital campaigning and Labour Party work. I am a very active party member, which includes canvassing, especially in Temple Cowley for the city council ward and county division. As a former Oxford City Councillor I am very aware of the work that our Labour councillors undertake.

I am an Executive Member and Membership Secretary of the Cowley Crescent Branch. The observer role helps to retain strong democratic accountability. This in turn assists discussion and knowledge of the policies we are promoting. As we emerge from the pandemic there is no doubt that the Tories will inflict savage cuts on local services. The success of any plans we have needs a major fight against Tory values and policies here and at national level. Finally I am committed to attending the group meetings as demonstrated by my strong attendance record the last time I held this role.

Oxford West & Abingdon

Kate McKenzie

I have an extensive career in local government generally and specifically in education and children’s services. During this career, I have seen the decimation of the notion of  ‘public service’ (and the terms and conditions of public sector workers), the erosion of local democracy and increasing control by central Government of local issues.  We have seen the importance of local government during the pandemic – the teachers and support staff who kept schools open, the public health workers who ensured such high rates of vaccination and the social workers who continued to protect children and young people from harm.  I am now retired and interested in how the politics (rather than the policies) of the County Council work.

Constituency delegates to the Oxford City Local Government Committee / Observers to the City Labour Group

Oxford East (four, including at least two women)

Roushin Bagdash

I am standing as an observer for the Oxford and Oxfordshire County Council Labour Groups.

I think it’s exceptionally important, as a BAME member and activist, that we have a thorough understanding of how the Labour Groups work as well as supporting Labour councillors’ election campaign by distributing leaflets, door-knocking, and street campaigning.

I am an activist who campaigned tirelessly for Oxford Living wage, Black Lives Matter, Anti Racist City, and ‘Why Vaccinate’ in BAME communities. And this year, I will be serving the Greater Headington Labour Branch as Chair.

I work in Connection Support covering Oxford and Oxfordshire as Deputy Team Manager for two projects, the Refugee Scheme and Asylum Seekers Project. My work has given me a good knowledge of many voluntary sectors and statutory agencies which are invaluable to making changes in building a fairer and more inclusive society that serves us all.

If elected to the LGC, I will do my best to attract and involve more BAME members in the selection of Labour candidates for the 2024 City Council election and 2025 County election to guarantee that they reflect the City’s and County’s cultural and ethnic diversity. I would be grateful for your support

Ann Black

The newly-formed Oxford City LGC met for the first time in May after the local elections, and immediately started preparing for another round of city elections in 2024.  This included ensuring selection of candidates in every ward, concluding in November.  The committee is also facilitating engagement with members on the manifesto, based on Labour’s four-year programme, and liaising with the Oxford & District party campaign committee on the campaign itself.  In addition to LGC meetings, delegates attend meetings of the city Labour group as observers so we understand the challenges facing our councillors in a nationally hostile political environment.

A major challenge for the committee is to attract and develop a larger and more diverse pool of candidates for wards to choose from in the run-up to the next elections in 2024, and I look forward to working with all members in making progress on this.  We are actively reviewing our recruitment and selection procedures to ensure that they are free from bias, and seeking to train more panel interviewers.

The LGC has only just started its work.  I hope to continue for another year, and ask for your support.

Julia Drown

I have experience in Local Government as a County Councillor for seven years, including time as Vice-Chair of the group and Spokesperson/Deputy Spokesperson on Social Services. I worked with Councillors in Swindon when I was MP there. I’m a former public sector accountant and am currently working tackling domestic abuse as Patron of Advocacy After Fatal Domestic Abuse.

If elected onto the LGC I would be pushing for:

  • the wider Party membership being involved in policy issues and the manifesto
  • fair selections to deliver a panel of candidates that reflects the City’s diversity

Darija Polovina

I am new to the Oxford area, but I am not new to understanding and addressing local and national fairness and equality issues. Professionally over the last five years I have worked for the equalities watchdog and in local government, developing policy recommendations for everything from delivery of public services, to housing, to advocating for unpaid carers. When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, I took an active role in my local community (Islington in North London at the time), setting up and volunteering for a local Mutual Aid group. I spoke to so many local residents who had great difficulty in accessing public and private services – something I’m sure was mirrored here in Oxford too at the time, and which will only become a more pertinent issue going forward as the cost of living continues to rise.

If elected onto the LGC, I would seek to build up my understanding of the local area and marry this with my experience of making change happen to support our efforts to build a fairer and more inclusive society as best I can. I’d be grateful for your support.

Bob Price

As one of the Oxford East observers to the City Council Labour Group this year, I played an active part in setting up the new Local Government Committee and getting its constitution approved by the Region. I have been the LGC Secretary this year, and in that role have worked closely with the Council Leader to arrange the recent discussion sessions on the Party’s four-year manifesto. This is a key function for the LGC and I hope to be able to continue as a member for a further year to develop the processes for Group/Party engagement.

The other key role for the LGC next year is to develop a pool of active and informed candidates for selection for the 2024 City Council and County 2025 elections. It is vital that we increase the size of the pool and ensure that the full diversity of the city is represented on it. This will take time and effort and I would like to be part of that campaign.

I have extensive campaigning experience, having been a City Councillor for over 30 years and Ward Organiser and Newsletter Editor for Hinksey Park/South Ward since 1980. I would be grateful for your support.

Sue Tanner

I have served on the LGC for the past year and would like to continue the work we have started.  As a former Councillor in two different parts of the country, and more recently a local government officer for 20-odd years, I feel I have experience which is useful to the LGC.

I also have a background in recruitment and diversity and welcome any efforts to encourage minority groups to consider standing as councillors.  When I was joint Women’s Officer for Oxford Labour, we helped increase substantially the representation of women on the Labour Group of the City Council.

I am an active campaigner in Hinksey Park ward.

Oxford West & Abingdon (one, any gender)

Jane Stockton

I am writing to ask you to nominate me as the delegate from Oxford West & Abingdon to the Oxford City Council Local Government Committee (LGC). As a member of the LGC since May 2021 I have played a substantial role in ensuring that candidates have been selected for all of the 24 wards for the Oxford City Council 2022 elections. I have also been a regular observer at Labour Group meetings, providing an important link between Labour Party members and their elected council representatives. If re-elected, I will lead on the development of our panelling and selection procedures for the 2024 elections, to update and improve them so that there is equality of opportunity for all applicants, as part of our commitment to ensure that our selected candidates represent as far as possible the wide diversity of our city.

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