I'm an ordinary person who came to politics because of the burning injustices I see in society. I joined the Labour Party nearly four years ago because I couldn’t stand by any longer and watch as children go hungry, homeless people die on the streets and public services are decimated.
For the last twelve years, I have lived only a mile outside of the constituency, spending time every week in some part of Morecambe and Lunesdale, whether that’s playing with my son on the beach in Heysham or attending a Morecambe Bay health meeting. I don’t want to be an MP just for the sake of it - I want to represent communities that I know and care about and make sure their voices are heard in Westminster.
I am already a hard-working Labour representative, elected twice to serve on Lancashire County Council. I have shown I can both win a campaign and represent everyone in the community. I work hard and I’m an active councillor. In my county work I have proven that I have the skills to take on the big issues while keeping my feet, and my priorities, firmly on the ground.
I'm determined that we will win the next general election and return a Labour government. I want to play my part in that and ensure that Morecambe and Lunesdale has an active and available MP who gives the constituency the fair and proper representation it deserves.
My campaigning experience means that I can win Morecambe and Lunesdale back from the Conservatives. Not only have I organised two successful county council election campaigns, I was also a key part of Cat Smith MP’s 2017 victory. I have organised both long and short campaigns, increasing the Labour majority every time.
After being recruited directly by Cat in 2014, I campaigned in the 2015 election, rapidly followed by an increasing role in the Lancaster and Fleetwood Labour Party. By the 2017 general election I had a county victory under my belt and was a key member of the election campaign team. I contributed to strategy and operations, leading on the vital work to increase Labour’s reach in rural areas, volunteer coordination, and organising the delivery of materials.
I practice inclusive campaigning as standard. While knocking on doors is very important, there are lots of other ways to contribute. I have coordinated dozens of campaigning sessions, such as folding leaflets and stuffing envelopes, and engaged volunteers with key tasks including data entry, proofreading, volunteer coordination and leaflet delivery. As a leader, I value everyone’s skills and time.
I regularly work with the media to raise concerns from my community and get the Labour message out there. I have been interviewed on TV and radio about Labour’s policy on Brexit, local flooding, changes to domestic violence refuge funding and miscarriage care. I have also created coverage in local papers on issues from closures of local services to great work by local community groups.
This selection is your chance as a Labour member to choose who stands in Morecambe and Lunesdale at the next general election.
The Constituency Hustings and Vote is where you get the final chance to grill the candidates and take a vote on who will represent Labour at the next general election.
This meeting is on 23rd Jan, 7pm at the Wesley Methodist Church, 21 Middleton Rd, Heysham, LA3 2QE.
In accordance with party rules, latecomers will not be allowed to vote.
At county and community level, I work hard to represent my constituents. I am proud of my record and reputation as a vocal representative for my community. I would take this same approach as an MP, being a strong local voice in Westminster.
Health and care services are one of my biggest priorities both as a campaigner and a county councillor. The Conservatives have thrown the NHS into crisis, which can be seen in overflowing A&E departments and people waiting hours for ambulances. I sit on the Lancashire Health Scrutiny Committee, where I work to ensure safe, excellent services for everyone in Lancashire, despite the damage being done by the Government. I use this platform to challenge the Government’s privatisation of our NHS and the damaging cuts to services. I scrutinise what NHS organisations and local authorities are doing to provide the best services possible, even at times of huge cuts and increasing demand.
I have made disability equality a big focus of my work. From making accessible streets and pavements a council priority, to getting a Changing Places room included in the refurbishment of Preston Bus Station, I have made real change happen. I support disability campaigners in their work and always ensure that the needs of people with disabilities are at the forefront of my mind. I support Labour’s manifesto commitment to sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities into UK law.
Good transport links are important for everyone and maintaining and improving them has been a big part of my work. As a councillor, I listen my residents who tell me that transport and highways are a cause of real concern for them, in particular making sure we have decent, affordable and sustainable public transport.
In one win for my community, I made sure that development money set aside for bus services, which had been sitting doing nothing, was spent on a much-needed local bus service.
I have supported local businesses through repeated flooding, lobbying for County resources to be directed to long-term solutions and for reinstatement of regular maintenance of drains.
I have challenged Government policy on changes to domestic violence refuge funding, gaining cross-party support and ensuring widespread media coverage of the campaign.
I have worked with fellow councillor Jean Parr to get child hunger on the agenda at the County Council. I have promoted and supported the work of community organisations, including giving grants to local food banks. Labour would ensure children have enough to eat as a minimum, while working towards an enriching life for all.
The Labour manifesto is an inspiring vision for a future that’s fair for everyone. I want to be part of delivering that future for everyone in Morecambe and Lunesdale. The aims of the manifesto are already threaded through the work I do.
I am a keen supporter of independent, ethical businesses in my area and I am a firm believer that properly paid, decent work is a key part of a good life. Labour is committed to fulfilling the potential of our communities by listening to the people and businesses that live there.
Labour will create an economy that works for all, with a proper industrial strategy, fair taxation (95% of taxpayers will be guaranteed no increase in income tax) increasing cooperative businesses and ensuring fair rules for companies and employees.
I regularly work with schools in my community and have seen the loss of specialist teaching and pastoral support as a result of the cuts. With a child about to start school, I know first hand the worth of access to a decent education. Labour values all different types of education, and through creating a National Education Service will ensure people are able to upskill and retrain throughout their lifetime.
I have regularly helped council constituents who have struggled with poor conditions and evictions. We have a housing crisis and Labour has a plan to tackle it. Labour will establish a new Department for Housing to focus on tackling the crisis and to ensure housing is about homes for the many, not investment opportunities for the few. Within 5 years of taking power, Labour will be building at least 100,000 council and housing association homes a year for genuinely affordable rent or sale. Labour will prioritise brownfield sites and protect the green belt. We will start work on a new generation of New Towns to build the homes we need and avoid urban sprawl.
A safety net for everyone is the foundation of a civilised society. We have seen in Morecambe and Lunesdale the effects of the Conservative’s punitive approach to the welfare state. Under Labour, people unable to work or out of work for a period will be properly supported. Labour will scrap unnecessary waits for benefits. Labour will also scrap the Work Capability and Personal Independence Payment assessments and replace them with a personalised, holistic assessment process that provides each individual with a tailored plan, building on their strengths and addressing barriers. Labour will end the pointless stress of reassessments for people with severe long-term conditions.
Tackling climate change and fuel poverty will be a core part of a Labour government’s policies. Labour will invest in energy infrastructure and jobs, transforming our energy systems and investing in state-of-the- art low-carbon energy production. Proper investment in renewables is essential and I am convinced by the evidence that climate change means nuclear power in Heysham must play a role in the immediate reduction of fossil fuels.
I was very pleased to gain three out of four CLP branch nominations from Carnforth, Heysham and Skerton branches. I feel honoured that the majority of branches chose me as their preferred candidate.
Past Vice Chair of the British Medical Association, Doctors in Unite Chair and local GP"I'm backing Lizzi because she is a true defender of the NHS. Lizzi really understands why the NHS is in crisis and how patients are suffering unnecessarily. She understands the system-wide problems, how all the different parts of health and social care are interlinked and what needs to change to get the NHS working properly again. Lizzi supports all NHS staff working under immense pressure and champions good patient care."
Skerton Member, City and County Councillor“After some thought, I will be campaigning in support of Lizzi Collinge, a local mum who has been working hard as a County Councillor.
Local Health Campaigner“I'm endorsing Lizzi because of her hard work defending our NHS and social care. Lizzi's campaigning to protect public service provision has ensured the voices of patients and services users are heard at all levels of Government.
Young Disability Activist"Lizzi has always supported me in my campaign for independence and proper accessibility for the disabled community, meeting me and others regularly. She has listened to me, taken my concerns to the highest levels and always supported me 100%. I know as a candidate and as an MP, Lizzi would fight for disability rights in everything she does.”
Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and Co-National Campaign Coordinator“Lizzi Collinge has a proven campaigning track record, holding a marginal County Council seat in a by-election in May 2016 and increasing the Labour majority in May 2017. By taking her campaigning enthusiasm from local elections to national elections she played a key role in getting Cat Smith re-elected MP in June 2017 and I know she’s determined to see a Labour victory in Morecambe and Lunesdale whenever the General Election is called - she will be ready!”
Local member and benefits adviser“I know Lizzi from the monthly Bay Dementia Hub, where we support people affected by dementia and their families. I'm backing Lizzi because I know she is a hardworking councillor and activist. I also believe Lizzi can bring together every part of the party to win Morecambe and Lunesdale and help deliver the next Labour government.”
The selection will be decided by Labour Party members like you who will vote at a special selection meeting. I would like the opportunity to talk to you about why I would make the best Labour candidate and MP, so please get in touch at any time by phone, email or online.
The selection meeting is at 7pm sharp on 23rd January 2018 at the Wesley Methodist Church, 21 Middleton Rd, Heysham, LA3 2QE.
In accordance with party rules, latecomers will not be allowed to vote.