Editorial: Speaking up, not standing back

Editorial: Speaking up, not standing back
Clare Phipps looks back on Autumn Conference and how Greens must continue to emphasise what makes them unique

Abig hello to fellow Green Party members and supporters. I am writing this shortly after returning from our Autumn Conference in Harrogate, where we focused our minds on “Speaking Truth to Power”. The Conference was an important reminder of the unique and vital role the Green Party plays as a voice speaking up where other parties stand back.

The Green Party plays a crucial role in speaking with those shut out from the corridors of power, in defiance of those with the power to act but who are failing. Whether it is working with the residents of Grenfell, let down by both their local Conservative Council and Labour representatives, or leading the call for crimes against women motivated by gender to be considered a hate crime, advocated for so passionately by our Deputy Leader Amelia Womack, Greens will always be on the side of those denied a voice.

Nowhere is this more apparent than when we are speaking for all of us and our planet in the fight against climate change; speaking with those communities who will be the most affected and yet have the least power to change the dangerous course that we are currently following.

 Reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and switching to renewables is just one of the practical steps Greens advocate taking to tackle the risks rising temperatures pose. On the Monday of Autumn Conference, a motion was passed to update our policies on climate change. The new chapter - like its predecessor - is packed with the practical steps that our government, and governments across the world, should be taking to ensure global temperatures do not rise above 1.5°C.

While the Green Party prides itself in standing with the powerless and fighting for the future of our home - the planet - it would be nothing without our members and supporters. And so I want to thank you: it’s because of you that we are not just any old other party sitting complacently on its establishment laurels. Day in and day out, you speak truth to power - and while you continue to do so, we will continue to have a major role to play in British politics.