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Leanne Wood, Bae watch (March 2018)

(March 01, 2018)

Bae Watch; with Leanne Wood

Leanne Wood AC/AM

I have recently published a pamphlet called ‘The Change We Need – A Democratic and Empowered Wales.’ This 32 page document is an attempt to bring about a discussion about the kind of Wales we want to live in. I am hoping we can talk about a different kind of politics, an alternative to what is dominating at present - that fosters better democracy and economic equality thorough individual, community and national empowerment.

The Change We Need” offers hope to everyone who feels despair at the way politics in the UK has developed in recent years. This is our chance to build something different and we must seize the opportunity. We may not yet have all of the tools and levers of power we need to solve our problems for ourselves, but we can and must get them to realise the vision of what Wales can be.

A core principle of this vision is that decisions affecting Wales should be made in Wales. If decisions about Wales are made outside of Wales, then those decisions may not be in our best interests. History is full of such examples.

Taking more control over our own lives is fundamental if we are to reduce poverty and inequality. It is undemocratic for 610 MPs from outside Wales and the unelected peers in the House of Lords decide upon what powers Wales should or should not have.

I have put forward ideas for some economic policies. Among them is a desire to support and nurture an indigenous Welsh business sector. Local businesses are more likely to stay in Wales and deliver benefits to local suppliers and to their workforce. We also want to create a system of tax breaks and incentives to enable workers and communities to buy-out their company if their jobs are at risk.

We also want to cultivate a system of decentralised and community-owned power generation. Wales has an abundance of natural resources in this country and we need to make them work for people here as well as preparing for a future that is less reliant on fossil fuels. We also need to retain more of the money already generated in Wales. At present far too much leaks out of the country because our levels of local procurement are low. Other countries, like Scotland for example, fare much better. The pension schemes of public sector workers and councils, for example, are currently invested outside of Wales. They could instead be harnessed as a means of backing our own industries and businesses through investment, thus creating more wealth for the nation.

In terms of education, we need to create the conditions that enable our young people to stay in Wales and thrive. At present, too many young, well educated people leave Wales in search of opportunities, never to come back. One way we could change this is to support young people to become self-employed and be the company heads or founders of social enterprises of the future. Along with our long term policies for a mass apprenticeship programme and our policies for covering the cost of tuition fees for students who stay and work in Wales after graduation, a Plaid Cymru government would invest in a tertiary education system that benefits the entire population. This has precedent elsewhere; by aiming for the entire population to become educated to tertiary level, the Basque government has given many adults the opportunity to improve their job chances or start their own businesses.

Wales could be so much more than it currently is. I believe the ideas in the ‘The Change We Need’ could allow us to reach our potential and chart a new course for our nation. I want to hear peoples’ views. What other ideas are out there? How can we collectively work to build a successful, empowered and democratic Wales? If you can contribute, come along to one of our public meetings and have your say.

(To keep up to date with the tour, follow our Facebook page here: facebook.com/Leanne-Wood-Y-Newid-Sydd-Ei-Angen-The-Change-We-Need-754555354753485/
or follow @leannewood on twitter)

Leanne Wood,
Leader of Plaid Cymru and Assembly Member for the Rhondda, March 2018

Also from Leanne Wood:

    

Bae watch; December 2017
Bae watch; September 2017

Bae watch; June 2017
Bae watch; March 2017

Bae watch; December 2016
Bae watch; September 2016

Bae watch; June 2016

Bae watch; March 2016

Bae watch; December 2015
Bae Watch; September 2015
Bae Watch; June 2015
Bae Watch; March 2015
Bae Watch; December 2014
Bae Watch; September 2014
Bae Watch; June 2014
Bae Watch; March 2014
Bae Watch; December 2013
Bae Watch; September 2013
Bae Watch; June 2013
Bae Watch; March 2013
Bae Watch; December 2012
Bae Watch; September 2012
Bae Watch; June 2012
Bae Watch; March 2012
Bae Watch; December 2011
Bae Watch; September 2011
Bae Watch; June 2011

Leanne Wood's contact details:

     Website: http://www.leannewood.org/
     Facebook: Leanne Wood
     Twitter: @LeanneWood

 

cylchgrawn Cymru Culture magazine
Published by/Cyhoeddwyd gan: Caregos Cyf., 2018

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