Open Letter to the Federal Executive of the Liberal Democrats

Dear members of the Federal Executive of the Liberal Democrats,

I first wrote to you on the 12th of November last year expressing our concern regarding the current structure of the party’s Federal committees and the changes Liberal Youth believes are necessary.

It has become increasingly clear to members of Liberal Youth that the party would benefit greatly from the experience and knowledge that young members of the Liberal Democrats possess with regards to both issues that concern young people, and wider issues such as access within the party.

Liberal Youth is the only constitutionally specified SAO in the party, and, further to this, it is the only SAO to which young and student members of the party automatically belong without having to opt in. As such, it feels obvious now that Liberal Youth, now being the largest voting bloc in the party, to be intimately involved in the decision-making process of the wider party.

This is already the case in both Scotland and Wales, where appropriate executive officers of the relevant state organisations of Liberal Youth (Ieuenctid Rhyddfrydol Cymru and Liberal Youth Scotland) sit on their Conference, Campaigns, Policy, and Executive Committees. In England too, LY England members sit on the English Council and Executive. It strikes us as peculiar that the same settlement is not imitated federally: if the Welsh, Scottish and English Liberal Democrats are able to trust their respective youth wings, it is surprising that the Federal Party does not do the same.

Through including Liberal Youth in the party committees of the federal party (as it already does for the FPC), it sends a clear message that Liberal Youth and the wider party of the Liberal Democrats are working together for the purposes of promoting a more liberal United Kingdom, and not in opposition to each other. This is especially important after we highlighted a number of concerns regarding ageism in the party that do not seem to be reflected in Wales in particular, where Liberal Youth membership of their main committees is automatic.

 

Liberal Youth now has around 7,000 members nationwide, many of which are new to the party since May. Before us now is an opportunity to show new members that they made the right decision in joining the Liberal Democrats, because it is the only party to take the views of its young people seriously.

 

We therefore call on the Federal Executive to include in its proposals significant reform of the committee system so that relevant members of the Liberal Youth executive do as their state counterparts do, and sit on the FCC, FPC and the FE.

 

Thank you,

 

Charlie Kingsbury

Co-Chair of Liberal Youth, former youth representative on the Welsh Conference and National Executive Committees

 

Michael Chappell

Co-Chair of Liberal Youth

 

Norman Lamb MP
Member of Parliament for North Norfolk

 

Tessa Munt

Honorary President of Liberal Youth, Former Member of Parliament for Wells

 

Alexandra White

Vice Chair of Liberal Youth, Former Vice Chair for Campaigns of Liberal Youth Scotland

 

Cllr Emily Tester

Policy Officer for Liberal Youth, LY representative on FPC, Town Councillor in Littlehampton, Chair of London School of Economics Liberal Democrats,

 

Sophie Thornton
Chair of Liberal Youth England; Campaigns Officer of University of Birmingham Liberal Democrats

 

Nathan Isaacson

Co-Events Officer of Liberal Youth

 

Tara Murray

Co-Events Officer of Liberal Youth

 

Nomi Farhi,

Membership Development Officer of Liberal Youth, Chair of Cambridge Student Liberal Democrats

 

Emily “Ems” Simpson

Co-Welfare and Access Officer of Liberal Youth; Digital Media Officer of University of Birmingham Liberal Democrats

 

Charley Hasted

Co-Welfare and Access Officer of Liberal Youth, DEG rep for Liberal Youth

 

Callum Delhoy

Non-Portfolio Officer of Liberal Youth

 

Ryan Cairns

Campaigns Officer of Liberal Youth

 

Ab Brightman

International Officer, Liberal Youth & Member of the Federal Party’s International Relations Committee

 

Joshua Dixon

Lib Dem Federal Executive Member

 

Caron Lindsay

Federal Executive member, Scottish Party Treasurer who can vouch that this works well in Scotland.

 

Cllr Neil Fawcett

Member of Federal Executive, Candidate for Honorary Vice-President Liberal Youth

 

Isabelle Cherry

Co-Vice Chair (Membership) of Liberal Youth England

 

Rachel Edwards

Co-Vice Chair (Membership) of Liberal Youth England

 

Harry Samuels

Vice-Chair, Campaigns, Liberal Youth England; Junior Co-Chair, Oxford University Liberal Democrats

 

Stuart Wheatcroft

National Member of Liberal Youth England, former Chair of Liberal Youth England

 

Jack Hughes

National Executive Member of Liberal Youth England; Liberal Democrats East Midlands Regional executive member.

 

Tom Davies

Co-Editor, The Libertine; Chair of Yorkshire and the Humber Liberal Youth

 

Bambi St Jay

Chair of London Liberal Youth

 

Henry Foulds

Co-Chair, East Midlands Liberal Youth; youngest disabled person to stand for election in the UK

 

Louise Kandler

Chair of South Central Liberal Youth, Treasurer of Oxford University Liberal Democrats

 

Chloe Hutchinson

Policy Officer for IR Cymru (LY Wales) and youth representative to the Welsh Policy Committee

 

Gurleen Kaur

Non-Portfolio Officer for IR Cymru (LY Wales)

 

Trudi Hancock

Communications Officer, IR Cymru (LY Wales)

 

George Potter

Chair of Surrey Liberal Youth, Member of the FPC Social Security Working Group

 

Elliott Banks

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Dr. Timothy J. Oliver

Candidate for Honorary Vice-President Liberal Youth

 

Bradley Hillier-Smith

Camden Borough Organiser and LY member

 

Gareth-Stuart Roderick Ogg

Former Vice Chair (Communications) Liberal Youth Scotland, and LY member

 

Mike Green

Former LYE Exec Member

 

Cadan ap Tomos

Youngest Welsh Lib Dem 2016 Assembly Candidate (Cardiff West and South Wales Central); Member of the Welsh National Executive Committee

 

Hannah Bettsworth

Former Co-Chair of Liberal Youth Scotland; LYS representative to the Scottish Executive; Scottish Liberal Democrat Candidate for Edinburgh Central and Lothian Region

 

Eilidh Macfarlane

Former Liberal Youth Communications Officer; Former Liberal Youth Campaigns Officer; Former Co-Chair of Oxford University Liberal Democrats

 

Joe Toovey

English Council member (LY delegation); Treasurer, Cambridge Student Liberal Democrats

 

Robin Rea

Former Liberal Youth Campaigns Officer

 

Lee Dargue,

Honorary Vice President, Liberal Youth

Chair, Lib Dem Mental Health Association

 

Tristan Gray

Policy Committee Member of Liberal Youth, Scottish Parliamentary Candidate

 

Joanne Ferguson

Co-Editor of The Libertine; Glasgow Liberal Youth Chair

 

Theo Scott

Member, Liberal Youth Scotland

 

Anne Cremin

Former Secretary, Oxford University Liberal Democrats

 

Nassar Kessell

Campaign Organiser, Watford.

 

Julia Wright

Honorary President, Durham University Liberal Thinkers

 

Tatiana Simpson

Candidate for Liberal Youth East of England Regional Chair

 

Ciarán Morrissey

Chair, University of York Liberal Democrats

 

Stace Williams

Former Vice Chair, Liberal Youth, Candidate for Honorary Vice-President Liberal Youth

 

Thomas Hughes

Member, IR Cymru

 

Jezz Palmer

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Jake Short
Member, Liberal Youth

 

John Grout

Member, Liberal Youth; Data Officer, Greater Reading Liberal Democrats

 

Matt Downey

Former Chair of Liberal Youth England

 

Harry Matthews

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Jean Vila

Former Chair, Oxford University Liberal Democrats

 

Gabriel Bramley

Non-Portfolio Officer, University of York Liberal Democrats

 

David Green

Member of the Scottish Party Executive and former President of Liberal Youth Scotland.

 

Sophia Nash

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Rhys Taylor

Former Liberal Youth Wales Policy Officer and Welsh Assembly Candidate 2016

 

Callum Taylor-Maher

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Huw James

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Ian Morton

Secretary, South Central Region

 

Maria Munir

Vice Chair and Secretary, University of York Liberal Democrats; Youth Representative on Executive Committee, Watford Liberal Democrats; Co-organiser of Hertfordshire Liberal Youth; Candidate for Watford Borough Council

 

Andrew “Andy” McKay
Ex-Senior Co-Chair, Oxford University Liberal Democrat

 

Hannah Winslade

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Dr Maria Pretzler
Member of the Welsh National Policy Committee, member Swansea & Gower Liberal Democrats

 

Callum Southern

Member, Co-Chair of East Midlands Liberal Youth, Treasurer of University of Nottingham Liberal Democrats

 

Chris Nelson

Chair, Northamptonshire Lib Dem County Coordinating Committee.

2015 PPC for Wellingborough & 2010 PPC for Kettering.

 

Cllr Jacquie Gammon

Member North Cornwall Lib Dem Executive

 

Cllr Mark Cole

Ceredigion County Councillor for Cardigan-Rhydyduwch Ward

 

 

Michael Beckett

Scarborough and Whitby Liberal Democrats Parliamentary Spokesperson. Yorkshire and the Humber Liberal Democrats Executive Committee Member

 

Aaron Chahal

Chair,  FXU Liberal Democrats

 

Billy Blake

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Gavin Grant

Chair of Western Counties Liberal Democrats, Chair of North Wiltshire Liberal Democrats

 

James Hutchinson

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Rev. Simon Wilson
Vice-Chair, West Norfolk Liberal Democrats

 

Richard Brett

Chair of the English Candidates Committee

 

Jack Davies

Chair of New Forest Liberal Democrats

 

Jacqui Sullivan

Chair of Welsh Conference Committee

 

Dr. Margaret Joachim

Vice-Chair of the English Party and Chair of the Regional Parties Committee

 

Robert Hardware

Former Chair, Aberystwyth University Liberal Democrats

Chair, Streatham Liberal Democrats

 

Laura Davies

Member, Braintree & Witham Liberal Democrats

 

Callum Webb

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Oliver Shore

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Will Wilshere

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Amy Gaskin

Member, IR Cymru (LY Wales)

 

Bethany Frost

Treasurer, Lancaster University Liberal Democrats

 

Brian Stokes

Liberal Youth England Exec Member

 

Mark Smyth

Ex-Senior Co-chair, Oxford University Liberal Democrats; Former South Central LY chair.

 

Cllr Andrew Martin

Councillor, Bolton MBC; former Campaigns Director, Cambridge Student Liberal Democrats; 2015 PPC Bolton West

 

Elliot Barbeary

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Steve Jarvis

Chair, English Party

 

Dipa Vaya

Co-organiser for Herts LY

 

Cosmo Lupton

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Paul Halliday
Returning Officer Liberal Youth

 

Luke Chapman

Liberal Youth South East Regional Chairman and Liberal Youth International Committee Member

 

Kevin McNamara

2016 Police and Crime Commissioner Candidate (Essex)

2015 Ealing North Parliamentary Candidate

 

Cllr Martin Smith

Town Councillor in Bognor Regis

 

Jack Dryden

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Jack Worrall

Member, Liberal Youth

 

Emma-Louise Rose

Member, Liberal Youth

 

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