That One Time The Deputy Leader of the Green Party Stopped By
We all know about the power of social media. We all know it’s really easy to ‘@’ key people and just say anything. But what happens when a deputy leader of a political party responds to a spur-of-the-moment tweet? Yero Timi-Biu will let you in on it.
As you probably know, I’m covering the elections for Rife Magazine. Politicians and their PR people are sipping tea in cafes with local MPs and people in their constituencies, and they’re encouraging us to follow their trail via their social media platforms.
At around 3pm yesterday, we noticed that deputy leader of the Green Party, Amelia Womack was just a few roads away from the Rife HQ. Amelia is not only a deputy leader but she’s also a member of the Young Greens’ Under 30 programme. The Green party recently released their Youth Manifesto a few days ago, and we wanted to find out about what issues the Green party find most important for young people.
On a whim, we decided to tweet Amelia. Leo politely invited her to visit
@Amelia_Womack We're currently doing a series on digestible politics to make sure young people aren't put off voting!
— Rife magazine (@rifemag) April 28, 2015
Moments later she responded, but we were too busy to check our notifications…
@rifemag sure – I'm free for the next hour?
— Amelia Womack (@Amelia_Womack) April 28, 2015
Then all of a sudden — the phone rang.
We all joked about how it was Amelia calling to say hello. This stuff doesn’t happen. I sit nearest to the phone, so I automatically answered it.
‘Hi, it’s Amelia here. You just asked me to visit you. I’m around for another hour.’
Me (frantically pointing at the phone and nodding)
‘Oh. Oh wow, ok. Hi.’
At this point Leo, Jess and Nikesh were in hysterics.
‘Sure, we’d love to have you. Hold on let me see if my editor is around…’
I more or less threw the phone at Nikesh and Leo and I were in shock and burst out in a fit of giggles in the hallway.
After Nikesh got off the phone, we compiled a set of questions we’d like answered.
1) What are the main issues the Green party thinks are affecting young people?
Amelia told us that the main issue the Greens want to tackle affecting young people is zero hour contracts. The Green party want to make it clear that they want to ban exploitative contracts and they understand some zero hour contracts are useful for students and people juggling other commitments.
Amelia further explained the implications of solely surviving on multiple zero hour contracts — the Green party want young people to be able to feel secure in the future. They want young people to be able to buy or rent a property and not feel completely weighed down.
2) Do you think we need to make talking about politics more digestible?
Yes. Amelia agreed with us on the fact that politicians don’t make politics easy to understand. Even with studying politics at school, the words used to describe everyday situations can be complex and sound like Latin. The Greens want school curriculums to demystify the notion that political issues or even working positions are not accessible to young people.
3) How does the Green party support the LGBTQ community?
The Green party have been progressive in supporting the rights of LGBTQ members and pushing for equality since the party began. Charlie Kiss is the first trans candidate to stand for General election for Green in London. The Green party want to push for a diverse sex education curriculum and create anti-bullying campaigns in schools.
4) Why don’t you have many BAME candidates?
Shahrah Ali is the first BAME co-deputy leader in any party, but Amelia acknowledged that the Green party still has a way to go when it comes to representations of the party’s policies and the candidates at the forefront of campaigns.
What do you think about what Amelia has to say? You can read the Green youth manifesto here.
Which party representative would you like to see stop by the Rife HQ, and what would you ask them?
Let us know — @rifemag