North Somerset Labour Party members have chosen their candidate to contest the Parliamentary seat held by Tory MP Liam Fox for the past 32 years.

    Award-winning pharmacist Sadik Al-Hassan was selected as Labour’s general election candidate at a meeting of members from across the constituency held in Nailsea on Sunday.

    “I am so proud to be standing for Labour at a time when the polls show that we have a very real chance of winning here,” Sadik said. “Over the coming weeks and months, I will continue my efforts to meet as many residents as possible to explain how Labour can change things for the better and end the long decline we have witnessed over 14 years of Tory governments.”

    Sadik has an extensive track record of making a difference to the communities he serves in the South West. As a pharmacist working on the NHS frontline in Patchway during the pandemic he helped protect the local community challenging times. During his time as a councillor and Deputy Mayor in Emerson’s Green he campaigned for change on the issues local people cared most about — such as protecting the environment and safeguarding green spaces.

    A key priority for Sadik is a plan to rebuild North Somerset’s NHS and social care system. Sadik has personal as well as professional experience of how the Conservatives have run local NHS services into the ground over the past 14 years. His two sons were born prematurely at Southmead Hospital and between these two challenging times Sadik and his wife noticed how much services had deteriorated despite healthcare workers’ best efforts.

    “The Institute of Health Equity recently revealed North Somerset as the only local authority in the South West where the gap in life expectancy between the richest and poorest women has widened significantly since the Conservatives came to power in 2010,” Sadik noted. “This is a shocking indictment but is just one example of the ways in which austerity has hit us very hard. Our NHS and other public services are at breaking point and are crying out for change.”

    Sadik will also champion safer and stronger communities with investment in neighbourhood policing and accessible and reliable local services, public transport, and high street banks and post offices. Working to protect North Somerset’s environment — including combatting the sewage dumping blighting our rivers and beaches — will also be a priority for Sadik.

    “Labour has a path to victory against the Tories in North Somerset, but it is narrow,” Sadik said. A series of recent polls have predicted that Labour could win in North Somerset for the first time ever after coming second at the last three general elections. In January, YouGov’s constituency-level MRP forecast — the method which correctly predicted the 2017 and 2019 General Elections — predicted Labour will win 32% of the vote in North Somerset, just 1% behind Liam Fox’s 33%. The poll showed the Lib Dems would lag behind on 16%, with the Greens getting 9%.

    “If Liberal Democrat and Green voters want a new, hardworking MP they must consider lending their vote to Labour because it is the only party the polls and the last three general elections prove can defeat the Tories,” said North Somerset Labour Party chair Julian Morris. “Sadik, with his track record of winning local elections in Tory strongholds, is the only candidate who can lead North Somerset to a better future,” he added.

    “We are delighted to have chosen a candidate with the energy, vision and commitment to stand up for North Somerset and reverse the 32 years of lacklustre representation the constituency has suffered under Tory MP Liam Fox,” Julian said. “It’s time we had an MP dedicated to the area, rather than a part-time politician who has failed to deliver on his promises to deliver the Portishead Railway and protect high street banks and pharmacies. Liam Fox has taken on countless second jobs and spent several weeks travelling on donor-funded trips abroad since the last general election alone.”

    Sadik and other local Labour Party members will be continuing efforts to meet North Somerset residents to discuss their priorities and concerns over the coming weeks and months. Street stalls will be taking place in Nailsea, Portishead, and Clevedon town centres over the coming weeks.

    If you would like to offer your help to Sadik’s campaign or ask any questions please contact us.

    Sadik campaigning with other local Labour Party members in Pill
    Sadik campaigning with other local Labour Party members in Pill
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