- Labour Party and Business: A Difficult Relationship?
- Chameleon Conservative Cameron Shows True Colours
- An Election Reflection for a Majority Minority
- Mhairi Black: Giving Politics a Makeover
- Galloway Threatens Legal Action Over Election Result
- Voter Turnout: What The Numbers Tell Us About The 2015 General Election
- Looking At The Reaction to the Election Explains its Result
- The Polls Were Wrong Because People Lied, it’s That Simple!
- Russell Brand “Resigns” from Politics following General Election Result
- It’s Not The Cold War Anymore, We Don’t Need a Nuclear Deterrent
- The Future of Labour: Who Will Be The Next Leader?
- The Future of the Liberal Democrats: Who Will Be the Next Leader?
- The Future of UKIP: Who Will Be the Next Leader?
- A Tale of Three Ends
- The Tory Legacy
- If the Party Leaders were characters from Friends…who would you vote for?
- The Ten (Well, Six) Commitments: Is Stone Legally Binding?
- Tuition Fees: A Hollow Attempt to Pander to the Student Vote?
- 6,417 Ed Milligrams – What Do You Actually Vote For?
- Boris Johnson to become Gangster Rapper
- Political Engagement: The Calm After the Storm
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview: Green Party’s John Spottiswoode.
- Parliamentary Candidate Interviews: TUSC’s Sue Atkins
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview, Independent Candidate Chris Daviss
- “I don’t think the Liberal Democrats should be in government just for the sake of it” – An Interview With Nick Clegg
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview, TUSC’s Nick Chaffey
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview: Conservative’s Jeremy Moulton.
- Should Young People Be Made To Vote?
- The Nationalist Parties
- No Votes for Women?
- None of the Political Candidates Ticking Your Box? There is Another Option.
- The Other Parties
- Liberal Democrats Party Profile
- The Green Party
- Labour Party Profile
- In Defence of the Coalition
- Why Labour Should Win the Election But Won’t
- The Protest Vote: The Weapon of the Disenfranchised.
- Why Young People Must Use Their Vote
- An Interview With Natalie Bennett
- What Will a Multi-Party System Mean for Britain?
- Tuition Fees: Must Try Harder Ed
- Science and Policy
- This Election is Far Bigger Than Party Politics
- Parliamentary Candidate Interviews: Ian Callaghan, Green Party
- Parliamentary Candidate Interviews: Lib Dem’s Adrian Ford
- Paliamentary Candidate Interview – Labour’s Darren Paffey
- Parliamentary Candidates Interviews: Lib Dem’s Eleanor Bell
- TV Debates: The Crucifixion of David Cameron
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview – Labour’s Rowenna Davis
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview, the Green Party’s Angela Mawle
- Can We Trust Politicians Who Act Like Schoolchildren?
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview – UKIP’s Sandra James
- Manifesto Focus: Labour
- Why Nuclear Weapons Are Imperative For The UK’s Security
- Southampton’s Role in the General Election Should Not Be Overshadowed by a Sausage Roll
- Just When You Thought UKIP Couldn’t Do Anything Right…
- What the Hell Do You Want?
- Which Political Leader Are You?
- The EU: To Be or Not To Be
- Your 2015 General Election Candidates
- What a Silly Sausage: Southampton UKIP Candidate Accused of Bribery
- UKIP Party Profile
- Conservative Party Profile
- The Leaders Debate: The Insurgents, The Pretender & The Incumbent
- SUPA’s Short and Sweet Guide to Voting on 7th May
- TV Debate: Clash of the Titans
- Leaders Debate Brings Hope For Progressive Politics
- TV Debates: David Cameron and Ed Miliband Versus Britain
- 14,000 Voters Missing From Electoral Role in Southampton – Register to Vote Now!
- Men’s Rights Party Set To Contest in General Elections
- A Royal Coup? – Queen Guitarist Brian May Considering Standing for Election
- Debating Over Debates
- Galloway Demands Inclusion in TV Debates
- The General Election 2015 – A Disunited Kingdom?
- 99 Days To Go: The Most Unpredictable Election Yet!
- Poll Indicates Demand for Green Party to be Included in Election Debates
- Have You Registered To Vote?
- Is Sol Campbell running for Parliament?
- Salmond to Stand as MP
- Students May Hold the Key!
- The Green Party Should Not Be Included in the 2015 General Election Debates
- Parliamentary Candidate Interview: Alan Whitehead MP
- What’s at Stake for Students in the General Election?
- It’s Time For Politicians To Get Down With The Kids
- The Debates Debate
- Who Will Run The Country in 2015?
- New Year, New Government? New Politics?
- Newly Elected Itchen MP Accused of Helping UKIP Secure Labour Votes
In the run up to the 2015 General Election, Wessex Scene are interviewing the candidates running in all three Southampton Constituencies. Here, I interview Trade Union and Socialist Candidate for Southampton Test, Nick Chaffey.
What will be your number one priority if elected?
Our main objective is to oppose all cuts, so we want to stop and even reverse the austerity cuts the Government are implementing. We are also against the privatisation of the NHS and are in full support of the social care act. In fact, we want to reverse privatisation. I have experienced cuts first hand, as in the area where I worked as a youth worker in Southampton, there were 40% cuts. So to summarise, I want to see all cuts stopped and reversed.
What can you offer to students?
Firstly, we do not agree with tuition fees, as we believe access to education should be open to everyone, including mature students. Tuition fees act as an obstacle to education. Secondly, housing is a major problem for students, so we would ensure rent is capped both in halls and in private rental properties, making it affordable for everyone. Thirdly, I am aware that graduates are not being employed in their subject fields, which is frustrating for the individual. It is therefore important to invest in new technologies and public services so that graduates can use their skills to the full. I also believe that all courses are important. I dislike the view that some courses are inferior to others. I don’t think these so-called inferior courses should be dropped, as they can all be useful in society. Fourthly, I supported the university strikes last year as I think lecturers should be properly paid. Nowadays there is not enough staff, and with less admin, that means the lecturers have to take on more duties which results in less contact time with students. This can only have a negative effect. Finally, I want to see the student voice empowered, bigger and stronger student unions and improvements in education. Many students across the country have got involved with TUSC and I would love to see even more getting active with us.
What makes you the ideal parliamentary candidate?
Our candidates are working people, myself included. I believe the Government needs more working people who understand the real world and who understand day-to-day problems. We fight every day to protect people’s jobs, yet we feel that this voice is not being heard. Politics really has got out of touch. Parties are now being bought by big businesses and seemingly only represent the 1%. Some politicians accept money from lobbyists and others take advantage of the expenses system. I consider all of these unacceptable. As a member of parliament I would refuse an MP’s wage, opting to have an average wage instead. MPs should be honest and accountable and they have to keep their promises. I am strongly in favour for the recall of politicians if they fail to do their job properly. If they don’t keep their promises, the constituents have a right to recall their MP.
Not many people have heard of TUSC. What does your party stand for?
Not many people have heard of us because we are a new party. We were founded in 2010, when the trade unionists and socialist party formed a coalition in response to our belief that Labour no longer reflects our values. We want to ensure a better life for the majority and we feel Labour have abandoned that. We want to give a voice to those who oppose austerity and we believe everyone should have a fair deal at work. We are against zero-hour contracts and we would like to see the minimum wage raised to £10. We believe apprenticeships should be paid at trade union rates and lead to permanent jobs. Young people should be given real opportunities and shouldn’t face a lifetime of debt. Many will ask “where will the money come from?” It’s clear that wealth doesn’t trickle down from the rich, so instead we would enforce corporation tax on big businesses, tax the rich and stop tax aversion which costs our country £100 billion. With that amount of money, we could stop the deficit tomorrow.
TUSC (Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition) is the 6th largest political party in the UK, larger than Plaid Cymru and SNP, with 136 parliamentary seats and 630 local council seats. An increasing number of councillors are voting against cuts now so I think more people will begin to join the movement soon.
Some people might think you focus solely on cuts, and not enough on other issues. What would you say to that?
Cuts have affected everyone across the board, in the health service as well as in education. Austerity has had an impact everywhere. So whilst it does appear that our main focus is on stopping cuts, we do have a wide range of policies in other areas too. Where young people are concerned, we want to see them have greater access to grants again, as well as more opportunities to ensure they have a more secure future. They are our future and we do not want to sentence them to a lifetime of fixing the problems our generation created. The environment is also a key concern for us. We would invest in renewable energies such as solar and wind, and reject plans for fracking as it is harmful and unsustainable for the future. We would invest in public transport making it more affordable and more environmentally-friendly, as well as renationalise the railway services and utility companies, such as electricity and water. On a global level, we stand in solidarity with trade unionists worldwide. We want to see an end to the wars in the Middle East, where many lives have been unnecessarily lost. We also want to see an end to poverty, as we believe the world has enough resources, if only they were managed more effectively.
Why should we vote for you?
I think you should vote for politicians with a track record of doing what they say. I have been a trade unionist and socialist for over 30 years, and have actively supported other trade unionists. For example, I have stood at picket lines, protesting against the closure of services such as leisure centres and NHS facilities. I am standing for election because I want to continue the work that I already do. It is not just about me, I am representing a campaign. As an individual I can’t change the world but I can certainly support others who want to see change. I advise people to get active and do something about the things that affect them and that they care about. If you have any more questions, I can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org
A list of all candidates running in Southampton and Winchester can be seen here.