Another Europe elections 2021: candidate statements

Voting is now open in Another Europe is Possible’s internal elections, and closes at 23:59 on Sunday 31st January.

There are 16 places up for election, 8 of which are reserved for self-defining women.

All members of Another Europe can vote in these elections. If you are a member, you will have received an email from OpaVote with the voting information. If you are not a member and would like to join in order to vote, you can do so here.

The candidates

Alex Fernandes

I’m a member of the outgoing NC and a Portuguese migrant. I’m also a Labour member, on the Steering Committee of Labour for a Socialist Europe, and an active supporter of the Labour Campaign for Free Movement. This year has been incredibly tough on everyone, and we’re about to see it get tougher as the Tories continue their relentless attack on migrants’ rights and the International working class.

AEIP will be at the front of fighting these and other reactionary forces, online and on the streets as soon as we’re safely able. As a committed socialist activist I hope you’ll give me the opportunity to help lead that fight. I am also keen to continue the good work that has been done in expanding the franchise to migrants through the Let Us Vote campaign, and coordinating to stop Labour’s backsliding on this and its other policy commitments to migrants.

Andrew Millsom

Since the day I found the Another Europe website I have been enthralled by the honest and intellectual ferver of the organisation. The podcasts and meetings have been extremely enlightening and I would like to be part of the future in determining the long-term strategy back to being akin with our near neighbours in Europe. Helping in the campaign to convince people to see Europe as our natural home. I want to pick apart “the Boris Deal”, which was achieved under the guise of the hoax of a potential “No Deal”. Then show what can be had with the democratic European organisations to achieve a more socially conscience European future.

Arunica Hom-Choudhury

No statement submitted.

Brian Williams

Anti capitalist, anti-racist, pro European, wealth sharer, rich taxer, living wage payer, union member, anti fascist, disarmament believer, eco friendly, democratic, empowered, free speecher, sport lover, retired, time on hands, want real and sustainable change. Optimistic about humanity.

Cat Villiers

As a film producer, I have worked in many countries and regions and it has given me an unusual perspective on our changing world. I believe we are now in a perilous period of history; our social, economic and political systems are under pressure from ecological events as never before. The rise of national right wing populism as an answer to these problems has fuelled racism, and urgent inequities in Climate and Health Justice.

I believe in the power of grass roots movements, change happens from the bottom up. As an activist concerned with the above tipping points, and the related issues for refugees and migration, I want to continue to be part of action for change in the UK, and elsewhere. I am an early supporter of AEIP, on the Organising Committee for the Stop Trump Coalition, and a Trustee for a Cultural Foundation.

Dave Levy

I am a committed pro-EU activist in the Labour Party. I live in London. The need for AEIP is still as great today as we move into a post-Brexit relationship with the EU and that relationship is governed by a Tory Govt and the partnership council. I am used to and experienced in arguing for good policy in the Labour Party. On Europe, I am driven by the words of my father, a WW2 veteran, that the EU is a project for peace, it’s been too often forgotten. Free movement and the Charter of Fundamental Rights will come to be seen as the greatest losses. AEIP needs to continue to campaign for a better Britain. I have written a lot about the economics and justice of the remain case on my blog, and I served on one of the Horizon 2020 incubator committees in the noughties.

Sheila Tyler

I have daughters and grandchildren in both the UK and Italy Brexit is a personal tragedy for my family, as it is for millions of people in the UK and EU. Although it is my fervent wish that the UK should rejoin the EU, I’m a realist and know there is much work to be done to inform and persuade people in the UK over time of the benefits of interdependencies. ‘Sovereignty’ as a concept generates a particular world view that is no longer appropriate in a interconnected world in which cooperation is vital. In the meantime, I believe much can be done to improve the UK-EU deal innovatively, not only because there are so many unintended consequences in addition to the exclusion of services and financial passporting, but because there are social and cultural imperatives. It is time to push, in both distinctive and coordinated ways, with other organisations to improve the deal and introduce new thinking.

Dylan Morris

In the midst of unprecedented turmoil both nationally and internationally, I believe that an outward-looking, global, progressive Britain is more necessary than ever. Brexit and the pandemic have underlined the importance of organising at a grassroots level to ensure that we make the changes we need to put the working class front of centre of British and global politics.

I’ve been a member of Another Europe since its foundation, and worked as an organiser in the South-West for the Remain campaign. I have since moved to Southampton, but the issues faced by the left and its failure to connect with the working class are the same. Another Europe is a vital part of ensuring the left stays true to its roots and doesn’t retreat into nativism. We need to tailor our message, not change its foundations, and I’d be honoured to be a part of that on the National Committee.

Fred Leplat

I have been an active member of AEIP since its inception and participated on the NC. I helped organise European Social Forums and have maintained links with organisations in Europe and elsewhere. While Brexit “is now done”, the fall-out continues and will feature in the Holyrood elections in May. If elected I will help AEIP campaign against the consequences of Brexit and for another Europe.

Glyn Ford

Labour MEP 1984-2009 representing initially Greater Manchester then, after 1999, the South West of England and Gibraltar. Represented the SW of England Constituencies on the National Policy Forum 2010-19 where I was a member of the International Commission and Brexit Co-ordinator.

In European Parliament was for four years leader of European Parliamentary Labour Party and Deputy Leader of Socialist Group. Amongst others, served on International Trade, Foreign Affairs, Research and Justice and Home Affairs Committees.

Lives in Manchester and Brussels. National Treasurer of Anti-Nazi League and regular writer for ‘Chartist’. Edited with Julian Priestley, ‘Our Europe, Not Theirs’, Lawrence and Wishart, 2014 and 2nd Edition 2016.”

Julie Ward

I’ve been actively campaigning with Another Europe Is Possible since before the 2016 referendum. As a former Labour MEP (2014-20) I’m connected to an extensive network of progressive European organisations with whom we MUST continue to work. I was a member of the European Parliament Committees for Culture & Education, Women’s Rights & Gender Equality, Regional Development and Monetary Affairs. I also had responsibility for relations with Bosnia Herzegovina and Kosovo and continue my work in the Balkans via organisations like the Freja Forum. I’ve been an active member of the NC for a year, eg bringing Roma voices into our conversations. I’m a member of Goldsmiths Law Dept ‘Britain in Europe’ think-thank and contributed to a policy briefing on the Immigration Bill. I write, edit, proofread – useful skills! I’m a child rights campaigner with a particular focus on unaccompanied minors and currently work for City of Sanctuary.

Laura Parker

Another Europe has been the organisation which has most sustained my hope in radical, progressive and inclusive politics. It has been consistent in raising issues fundamental to me, including the defence of migrants’ rights and freedom of movement, which should be at the core of all progressive politics. These struggles are more important than ever as too many (including in the Labour movement) have conceded to the falsehood that some narrow Brexit has now been ‘done’ and they can be set aside. I’m committed to pluralism and radical democratic reform and hope my experience campaigning within the Labour Party and Momentum, and before that working for children’s rights organisations, will be useful for AEIP.

Luke Cooper

I co-founded Another Europe and it’s been an incredible journey over these last 5 years. Brexit was a terrible, crushing defeat. And now we have to play the long-game, building up support gradually for our goals. That means in the short-term fighting for a closer relationship, and in the longer term Britain rejoining a reformed EU. If you re-elect me, I will work on several projects:

We have a brilliant organisation of members and supporters. We’ve already made such an impact – and we can achieve much more in the future.

Mark Mason

Too much Hampstead and not enough Hull” was Andy Burnham’s view about the Brexit referendum we pro-Europeans lost back in 2016.

I’m from Yorkshire – I couldn’t agree more!

If I am elected to the National Committee, I will make it a matter of priority to mobilise working class people and those marginalised from politics. Europe’s not the enemy – it’s neo-liberalism.

The savage deindustrialisation which started in the 1970s coincided with Britain’s entry into the Common Market. Many older voters have conflated one with the other. In order to rejoin Europe, we need people from all social backgrounds and generations to make a popular – but not populist – case based on democratic socialist values.

I am a journalist by training and I also have a Masters in Translation from Hull University. I have worked in a bookies and for the NHS. I will do everything I can to help a people’s Britain rejoin a people’s Europe.

Mark Montegriffo

I’ve been following AEIP for ages and it has been crucial in helping my analysis.

I was born in Gibraltar (96% remain!). Critically pro-European socialism has been an important part of my upbringing, with my grandfather being involved in the post-colonial Gibraltar government, and his uncle in the republican left side of the Spanish Civil War.

That experience of the Civil War is indicative of European socialist solidarity predating the EU by decades, and will last for decades beyond Brexit.

In my current job as Press Officer at IWGB, but also through other projects and experiences through the years, I’ve learned the centrality of the migrant working-class to building socialist power. To borrow a phrase from our comrades at Migrants Organise – solidarity knows no borders.

You can read me on Tribune, Jacobin, New Statesman – but would love to hear from you if you want to get in touch!

Martin Shaw

I am a member of Another Europe’s new academic advisory group, currently completing a book on racism and Brexit, and have been involved in progressive pro-European politics since European Nuclear Disarmament in the 1980s. A Labour member for 40 years, in 2016, I led the local anti-Brexit campaign in my strongly Tory, pro-Brexit area of Devon. I then left Labour partly in disgust at Corbyn’s failure during the referendum, but also to get elected as an Independent County Councillor on an anti-hospital closure platform. Working with Devon for Europe, I have consistently raised Brexit issues on the council. I’m interested in how we can develop a new campaign to fight back on Europe and support Europeans in the UK.

Mary Kaldor

I am Professor Emeritus of Global Governance at LSE and I direct research projects on conflict and on Europe. I have been active in the Labour Party and the peace movement all my life and have been very involved in pan-European activism and in working towards a human security policy for the European Union. I am keen that AEIP should reach out to similar civil society groups to press for reform of the European Union and that, in the UK, we campaign to protect our rights that are being taken away from Brexit and prepare the ground for a progressive revision of the EU Treaty in 2025.

Matthew Blakemore

In 2016 I fought for us to remain in the EU. Following the result, which cost me my livelihood, I joined Another Europe is Possible, OFOC, and the People’s Vote campaign. I’ve challenged those responsible for the misinformation and corrupt data practices that I believe have stolen the futures of so many and damaged our international influence and reputation. I became a member of the BSI AI Committee to set AI data standards to prevent companies like Cambridge Analytica damaging our democracy again. I recently stood in the Labour NEC elections on a pro EU / pro PR ticket. I believe we should be a voice for workers, businesses, and services impacted by the new deal, for students missing out on Erasmus and musicians unable to tour without visa-free travel. The brexit deal leaves so much left to be negotiated and we should not let the government proceed without scrutiny.

Mik Antoniw

I am a Labour Member of the Welsh Parliament and a trade unionist. i am committed to a future relationship with Europe and the development of positive progressive policies for Wales , the decentralisaiton of power in a federal UK and the development of a specific relationship between Wales and other countries internationally and in Europe. i want Wales to develop its own EU programme.

Patrick Perez-Lopez

Europe is socially, economically, environmentally and diplomatically stronger and more secure when its constituents stand together as a force for good in Europe and the wider world. The diversity of cultures within Europe is a cause for celebration and provides a unique and multi-facetted continental perspective on internal and external issues and challenges. The general rise in nationalism can be countered by effectively quantifying and disseminating the very real benefits of intra-European co-operation and harmony. The balance sheet of positives versus negatives is unarguable. I am proud of my country and its place in our wonderful continent of nations. Europe is certainly not perfect but perhaps it could be when we, as Europeans, work together for the common good.

Pete Radcliff

Brexit will never be done. It didn’t end with the Withdrawal Agreement, it didn’t end with Johnson’s deal. The far right endlessly push their nationalist division and hatred. They hope to stop workers acting as a class against poverty and the crisis of the environment and health. They won’t stop. We have to stop them.

Allied with groups like Labour for a Socialist Europe, Another Europe has a hugely important role to play in fighting the continuing attacks on migrants and against the Tories nationalist agenda dominating the political narrative.
As a lifetime socialist, trade union activist and supporter of Workers Liberty, I have been on the AEIP National Committee for two years, played a prominent role in developing an active group of local supporters in Nottingham and active in promoting a Labour MP rebellion against Johnson’s Brexit.

We need to continue to organise to fight the Tories’ nationalist agenda.

Robert Turner

I am a retired engineer of 75. My time is split equally between England and France where I now reside in response to Brexit.

It’s always been my belief that Britain should be an active and constructive member within Europe and I have marched and voted for this on every occasion, both before and after our accession to the Treaty of Rome.

After an R&D career in the U.K. and the USA the last ten years of my working life were spent working as a contractor for the European Commission, bringing technical people together across Europe. Most recently this involved identifying skills in Eastern Europe and linking these with Western partners in common projects. Building the European family one step at a time.

I’m used to working collaboratively and would like to use my skills better to decide how to move forward.

Sally Brooks

I am a long time supporter of Another Europe as a York-based campaigner, former NC member (2019/20) and member of the Academic Advisory Group. I am putting myself forward as I believe that Another Europe continues to play an important role as a voice for international solidarity and pluralist politics – a counter narrative to jingoistic ’Global Britain’ and ethnonationalist visions of post-Brexit UK – and an informed, critical voice on the damaging impacts of the government’s Brexit deal on workers’ rights (already under threat), human rights and the environment.

Seema Syeda

Brexit is happening, but the fight for socialist internationalism continues. I’m committed to building movements across Europe and beyond to fight for a green new deal, democratised economy, stronger workers’ rights, and an anti-racist agenda.

Based in Birmingham, I’m an active trade unionist and regional officer of Legal Sector Workers’ United. I have campaigned with Another Europe and the Labour Campaign for Free Movement on the streets and in the Labour Party. I spoke at the conference of the European Left in Brussels in 2019, making the case for remain and reform from an anti-racist perspective. I also organised a Barclays Bank occupation as part of Momentum’s international campaign against fossil fuel funding.

I co-authored ‘Creeping Fascism: what it is and how to fight it’, a book that situates Brexit in the global rise of the far-right. I see Another Europe’s role as critical to combatting that rise.

Shaista Aziz 

I’m standing to be re-elected to the NC at a time when COVID-19 is raging and creating devastation across the country and disproportionately impacting Black people and ethnic minorities, migrants, those who are amongst the lowest paid workers in the country and the most marginalised. All of this is of course taking place in the shadow of a hard Tory Brexit fuelling further attacks on workers rights and emboldening the far right and reactionary forces. If re-elected I will work with AEIP to campaign, lobby and stand up for workers and all our communities. I will work to ensure our movement is inclusive, anti-racist, and our campaigning and analysis is rooted in tackling all oppressive systems and intersectional.

Simon Hebditch

From a UK point of view, I believe that it is imperative that we retain our involvement in campaigning on European issues and structures. The EU is far from perfect but it is an entity which points the way to international co-operation and co-ordination to the benefit of the people of Europe. We need to foster relationships across the EU and a wider Europe to build support for positive internationalism and Another Europe is one way to achieve this objective.

Tom Walker

I am a current member of the national committee, seeking re-election. In my time on the NC I have run Another Europe’s website and online tools, as well as contributing to the overall strategy.

Now that Brexit has happened, against the background of the pandemic and a coming economic crisis, Another Europe must work to redefine its role once again.

We were correct in our warnings about the consequences of Brexit, as the Tories’ plan to attack workers’ rights shows. This is the beginning of a new wave of deregulation. Yet the left is scattered, not yet rebuilt after the 2019 election disaster.

Our purpose now must be to highlight the government’s use of Brexit to launch these attacks, and defend our rights at every turn.

To do that we need internationalism, with links to socialists and progressives across Europe, supporting social movements and continuing our traditions of cross-border solidarity.

Zoe Gardner

I have been on the NC and an enthusiastic member since AEIP’s very beginning and am keen to continue this work. I bring expertise on migration and refugee issues to the NC along with my networks in the migrants rights sector in the UK and further afield in Europe. I am currently building some joint policy work with French colleagues to respond to the post-Brexit Channel migration issue, for example, which is the kind of work that I know AEIP members will be keen to support and be connected to.