Friday, September 18, 2009

What's important to me politically? Social Justice

I'm thinking through the issues that are important to me in choosing a political party, I'm not sure if I'm doing them in order of importance but the first one I thought of was social justice, so I guess that's near the top for me.

I want a government (and by extension political party) that prioritises care for the poor, that thinks seriously about domestic and international poverty.
I'd want a clear commitment to reach the UN target of 0.7% GDP being given in international aid not sometime in the near or distant future but tomorrow and that's a minimum.

I'd want to see some clear thinking on urban poverty that doesn't just chuck money at it, but addresses low aspirations, unemployment, poor parenting, broken families, drugs, crime, ill health, poor schools and depressing housing conditions.

I'd like to see some genuine commitment to closing the inequality gap, it's not good enough for the rich to get richer and the poor to get poorer or only marginally better off.

I'd like to see some genuinely impressive funding of NGOs work amongst the poor in the UK as well as overseas. I couldn't be a member of a party that didn't genuinely connect policies and people with the needs of the poor.

I'd like to see some intelligence on immigration where we can change our attitudes to those that seek to live here. The Bible challenges us to treat the foreigner, sojourner and alien amongst us well. We can and must do better here.

My guess is that all the parties will claim to be doing all of these things in one way or another, the hard thing will be too work out who makes sense and why. I'll evaluate each of the parties in turn on this one.


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