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Support credit unions and drive out loan sharks

The Mayor of London should play a key role in driving out loan sharks across London, according to a new report recently launched by Caroline, her London Assembly colleague Stephen Knight and Lynne Featherstone MP, at the London Capital Credit Union in Islington.

The report, "Payday London", sets out a number of policies that the Mayor could adopt to tackle the problems created by payday lending and illegal lending. By actively supporting the growth of credit unions, with low and capped interest rates, more Londoners could avoid resorting to lending at exorbitant interest rates and frequently entering a cycle of unsustainable debt.

Communities need more accessible Safer Neighbourhood Teams

Safer Neighbourhood Teams across the capital are not meeting Londonwide standards for accessibility according to a new report published today by Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group.

Assembly rejects Heathrow expansion

Despite opposition from the Conservatives, the London Assembly has voted to reaffirm its opposition to the expansion of Heathrow Airport and suggest that more use could be made of spare capacity at other airports serving the South East. It was reacting to the interim report published by Sir Howard Davies’ Airports Commission and the options proposed for expanding Heathrow and Gatwick.

Caroline Pidgeon AM, who proposed the motion, said: “I am really disappointed to see Heathrow back on the table. Airport capacity in London is currently under-used, in fact some London airports have more than half of their runway slots free. Rather than inflict further misery on the residents of West London, the Davies Commission should rule out expansion of Heathrow and focus on better use of capacity at other South East airports.”

Mayor must listen to the coroner and admit mistakes

As Boris Johnson disputed the conclusions of a coroner's report finding that cycle superhighways create a false sense of security for cyclists, Lib Dem London Assembly leader Caroline Pidgeon said:

“The Mayor is simply wrong to question the views of the independent coroner who listened to expert witnesses before publishing her report. His inability to admit fundamental mistakes were made is a serious hindrance to improving road safety.”

Sentences for cycling deaths are far too lenient

Speaking to the Evening Standard on figures showing that of 40 deaths of cyclists on London's roads between 2010 and 2012, only 4 resulted in prison sentences for careless driving, Caroline Pidgeon said:

“All the evidence does suggest that far too often lenient sentences are being handed down to motorists and lorry drivers who have been convicted for careless driving which has contributed to the death of a cyclist.”

Cycle hire deal with Barclays was always one-sided

Commenting on the news that Barclays will not renew its sponsorship of the Cycle Hire scheme when the initial contract expires, Caroline Pidgeon told the BBC:

"Barclays have received immense benefits from the publicity given to the cycle hire scheme in its early years, but now that its performance is looking shaky they appear to be bailing out.

"Fundamental questions have to be asked as to how such a one-sided deal was ever struck between Transport for London and Barclays."

TfL needs to be transparent on accident figures

Speaking for the London Assembly in response to figures showing that in the last year cycling casualties on the road have risen by 18%, and pedestrian casualties by 15%, Caroline Pidgeon said:

“There is nothing inevitable about cycling and pedestrian collisions resulting in death or serious injury. Cyclists are three-and-a-half times more likely to be killed in Britain than in the Netherlands.

After many painful fare rises, the Mayor finally does the right thing

Caroline Pidgeon AM, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the 2014 fare package that has finally been published today, said:

“At long last the Mayor has finally done the right thing this year and ensured that fares rise on average by no more than the rate of inflation. After so many painful years of inflation busting fare rises this is the very least the Mayor should be doing to help Londoners.

Video: Challenging the Mayor to get cycle safety work done urgently

At November's Mayor's Question Time, Caroline Pidgeon pressed Boris Johnson to ensure that much needed cycle safety work is done urgently, without the long delays that have been seen so far.

Police Commissioner is out of touch with cycling community

Talking to the PoliticsHome website on the Metropolitan Police Commissioner's comments that he would not cycle in London, Caroline Pidgeon commented:

"Ultimately it is Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe's own decision if he wishes to cycle or not in London, however what really concerns me about his comments is that they reveal how out of touch he is with London's growing cycling community or the many police officers who cycle every day."


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