“Our single biggest aim is to improve public services that everyone relies upon. That’s how we can drive equality, promote sustainability, reduce costs for businesses and families and provide a fair chance for everyone.”

The Social Democrats today publish our first manifesto for local government, putting sustainable communities and better public services at the heart of all Council activities.

The Social Democrats have 58 candidates for May’s local elections, including 45 candidates who are stepping up for the first time because they want to see their communities thrive.

With 32 female candidates, the Social Democrats have a higher proportion of women seeking election – at 55 % – than most other political parties contesting these elections.

Party co-leaders Catherine Murphy TD and Róisín Shortall TD said:

“As Social Democrats, our single biggest aim is to improve public services that everyone relies upon. That’s how we can drive equality, promote sustainability, reduce costs for businesses and families and provide a fair chance for everyone.

“Local authorities play a crucial role in our lives and our councillors will make quality affordable housing a clear priority. But Social Democrats don’t want to build just homes – we want to build communities.

“And that means making amenities, infrastructure, transport, retail, accessibility and environmental sustainability central to every single development that our Councils sanction. Planning is an area where Councillors have a real say. The Social Democrats will plan for our communities and all of our lives.

“This is the first local election for the Social Democrats and our campaign is well underway. We are seeing from the reactions on doorsteps that people are hungry for a new type of politics that puts people and communities at the heart of all decisions.”

Building Vibrant and Sustainable Communities – Planning for People

Housing: We will prioritise housing. Councils must play a stronger role in ending the crisis in affordability and the scandal of family homelessness. Crucially, Councils must also plan for all of the infrastructure that should go with new housing developments.

Environment: Our Councillors will make sure that Councils play their part in addressing this global issue through investment in recycling, measures to tackle the plastics problem, and the promotion of biodiversity measures.

Youth: Our Councillors will focus on our youth. We want to strengthen social infrastructure for all age levels but with a particular focus on enhanced community services for young people.

People with Disabilities: People with disabilities should be at the heart of all decisions. Our Councillors will prioritise the needs of people with disabilities. We want to put a renewed emphasis on this issue, with greatly improved accessibility and participation embedded in all council strategies and plans.

Doing the Basics Better: We want to focus on getting Councils to do the basics well. That means being pro-active, open and responsive to our communities, taking enforcement seriously, following through on plans, and learning from best practice.

ENDS

12th May 2019

Building Sustainable Communities:The Social Democrats Manifesto for Local Government 2019 is available here.