Go Grassroots Manifesto

This comprehensive plan for internal reform has been written by branch officers

First and foremost, I want UKIP to totally refocus to local politics and winning local elections, thereby establishing solid UKIP strongholds in preparation for national elections. This will be done through:

  • Cutting spending on national campaigns and redistribute to local election campaigns.

  • Party provided set templates for local election flyers. I will also negotiate with printing businesses to print and deliver flyers to local branches on order.

  • Setting up a scheme where local election materials will be subsidised for active branches that have a proven work ethic and good chances of winning council seats.

  • Targeted national party assistance in selected local campaigns where UKIP stand a good chance of winning. For example, involving the party's Director of Communications or our social media team in helping the local branch to manage their online campaigns.

  • Financial incentives to branch committees to get local councillors elected.

Our branches are the very foundation upon which this party is built and they have been neglected for too long. In support of our branch structure, I plan to:

  • Return funding from membership fees back to branches in order to allow them to be financially viable.

  • Introduce a commitment that elected councillors pay 15% of their allowances back to the branches that got them elected.

  • Revive branches that have folded in areas where UKIP traditionally did well - namely Stoke, Thurrock, Thanet, and Hartlepool in particular - and ensure that we stand full slates of candidates in these areas.

  • Promote a social media roadshow run by our social media team to branches which will give them tips on using social media and insights as effectively as possible in their local campaigns.

  • Start up regional 'How To Campaign' sessions run by our National Campaign Coordinators.

  • Have a focus on branches organising around local authority areas rather than constituencies as best as possible.

It is imperative that we go back to our grassroots. UKIP is full of talented people that haven't been used to the party's advantage. I aim to unlock the potential of our membership by:

  • Opening up spokespersons roles to the membership and allowing our members the opportunity to submit applications to become spokespeople for the party in their areas of expertise.

  • Preparing a national local manifesto that the membership feed into through the spokespeople which can then be tailored by each branch to suit their local needs.

  • Revitalising Regional Organisers and ensure that they are proactive in liaising with local branches and assisting grassroots campaigns.

  • Involving more Young Independence members on the party's official social media output.

Remember: UKIP spent around £600,000 on these European Elections. This money could have been better spent by giving £24,000 to each of our top 25 branches. This is the radical refocus of our campaigning that is desperately needed.

National Policies

My campaign is mainly about internal party reform and a refocus on grassroots, however for us to be successful at a local level it is vital for us to have common sense and patriotic policies as a national party and put forward a positive vision of post-Brexit Britain to the electorate.

Under my leadership, I would want the party to focus on:

  • Law & Order

    • UKIP needs to have strong policies with regards to law and order. It should support tougher prison sentences that are actually a punishment. Life should mean life. One rule of law for all.

  • Defence

    • The Conservatives have cut our armed services to an unsustainable and dangerous level. UKIP must be there to support our armed personnel and veterans, as well as pledging more money to be spent on the defence of our realm.

    • UKIP should stand in favour of firing Capita and refocusing the recruitment process of the Army to its core demographic.

    • We must also ensure that the Government does not allow the disgraceful witch hunt of soldiers and veterans through the courts.

    • Ensure the military covenant is upheld.

  • Young People

    • Young people have been totally neglected and let down by our Government. UKIP should adopt radical policies to address the problems that today’s young people face, and these should be written by our Youth Affairs spokesman and our vibrant youth wing - Young Independence.

  • Safeguarding our Children

    • UKIP should adopt a policy to revoke parental rights of convicted grooming gangs and other rapists from any children that they have fathered through rape.

  • Economy

    • UKIP need to put forward a positive vision of what our economy should look like post-Brexit. We must push for a reduction in corporation tax to incentivise new businesses and further job creation.

    • We should also commit to abolishing VAT entirely.

  • Immigration

    • UKIP needs to remain the strongest party when it comes to immigration. We need to continue to advocate for a humane Australian-based points system for immigration as Britain’s post-Brexit immigration policy.

  • Free Speech

    • Repeal and replace s.127 of the Communications Act 2003 with a more appropriate section that is relevant to the modern day usage of the internet. The current law has unintended consequences that end up criminalising jokes.

  • Homelessness

    • Prioritise the ~300,000 British homeless people and veterans for housing over foreign nationals, refugees, and asylum seekers​.

Furthermore, we should continue to push common sense policies such as:

  • Abolishing the TV licence.

  • Dramatic reduction in foreign aid, with a small pot retained only for genuine disaster relief or humanitarian aid.

  • No cap on public sector pay.

  • A serious look at the over-bureaucratic nature of our NHS which can be streamlined to save both money and lives.

  • Scrap hospital car parking charges.

  • A focus on cheaper and quickly-built housing to allow first time buyers to get onto the housing ladder whilst also supporting community led planning.

  • Extremism

    • Of course, UKIP must maintain a strong policy on extremist ideologies - a conversation that the mainstream parties simply refuse to have. Under my leadership, UKIP should:

    • Oppose Sharia Law, Halal Slaughter, FGM, and Polygamy.

    • Advocate for an independent investigation into who funds mosques in Britain and stop the rapid increase of the number of mosques in this country.

    • Work with Muslim charities and prominent moderate Muslims who are outspoken against radical Islam in order to shape our policy and eliminate the very real threat that grooming gangs pose to our children.

    • Work with any other anti-extremism charities to work on policy to prevent extremism from all ideologies and sides of the political spectrum.

  • Devolution

    • UKIP’s policy on devolution should be shaped by the membership of UKIP Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland to best suit the situations in each individual nation. I believe in giving more autonomy and policy-making power to UKIP in each nation in order for them to shape their own stances on nation-specific issues.

© 2019 Ben Walker Campaign Team. All rights reserved.