Know your councillor (part 2): Laura Robertson-Collins, Labour, Liverpool, Greenbank
Laura Robertson-Collins was elected to represent Greenbank ward on Liverpool council earlier this month.
How old are you?
45, and mother of 3 children, Gemma, Thomas and Bethany, oldest 2 are now away at University, & youngest is at Calderstones School.
What job do you do?
Senior Union Support Officer (SUSO) at the TUC's unionlearn - working to promote learning in the workplace through our affiliate trade unions - for union members and all employees in the region.
What interests/hobbies you have outside politics and the Labour party?
Does that mean i cant count leafletting then?? - ok - walking, cycling, garden - as a working mum, not much time for anything once the politics is also done.
Three aims for 2011?
1) Improve the local environment in my ward, increasing the percentage of waste that is recycled, working to ensure provision of recycling facilities in all the high-rise flats and apartment blocks, and trying to ensure street services are provided as effectively as possible;
2) To help set up a residents' association in the 'Dales' off Smithdown road, working with the universities to ensure the many students there help the long-term residents look after the area, and working to support the local businesses in the area to ensure it remains economically sustainable; and
3) To improve skills and work opportunities across the city of Liverpool, esp via apprenticeships, so that young people are given a chance to gain employment and qualifications.
Hero and why?
Eleanor Rathbone - not a Labour politician, but fiercely independent and strongly feminist, was one of the two MPs for the 'English Universities' (those which were not London, Oxford or Cambridge) - and she lived in Greenbank Ward! Eleanor campaigned for decades against child poverty, eventually ensuring women with children could receive Family Allowances, the precursor of universal Child Benefit, in the face of opposition from both the political left and right. Eleanor also campaigned against Female Genital Mutilation at a time when even to mention this would have caused uproar. Not recognised by our city as fully as she should be - perhaps it is time for a campaign for a statue or memorial to her work?
Songs on your ipod?
Am normally listening to Radio 4 nowadays, or Radio Merseyside for the local news - but when I have time for music it can be from wide selection chronologically (if not politically) - REM, 90's Britpop, 80's ska, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan, ... or Elton John (i come from Watford!)