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In many places in the North East you will be able to vote Green in both the general and local elections, and we’ve had lots of people telling us they already have done – using their postal vote.

As my friend Nic Best says

A Green vote is not a wasted vote. We are almost certain to have Green MPs in the new parliament – in Brighton, Norwich, Lewisham, if not in the North East (yet). And the bigger the national Green vote, the bigger their authority in parliament will be. So – vote for what you believe in! Vote Green, tomorrow.

What we have been working hard to get across to people is that the Green manifesto is offering something positive – that it is achievable – all it takes is political courage and popular democratic backing.

What we are hearing from people in South Shields is that the economy is the biggest concern. We will champion our local economy. We need to invest in new skilled jobs, real jobs, for instance in renewable energy technology, to build on our strong manufacturing heritage.

There is also vital work which needs doing, like putting solar panels on council houses and insulating all homes, schools and hospitals. This would create much-needed jobs for builders, plumbers, electricians and engineers.

We will fight the cuts, closures and creeping privatisation of our public services. We all rely on public service workers in our everyday lives and we will fight to protect their jobs.

Instead of cuts, we would use the tax system to make our society more equal by reducing the gap between rich and poor. We would tax the banks, with a Robin Hood tax. We would bring our troops home now from Afghanistan, not replace Trident nuclear weapons and stop the ID card scheme.

I stand for investing now to tackle the recession, for a safe, secure future for our children.

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