Meet the Westoe candidates for the South Tyneside local council elections
This year's local elections are just around the corner, and we are turning the spotlight on all South Tyneside's candidates in the run-up to polling day on May 3.
Each one will be given the opportunity to tell readers why they are standing and why people should vote for them.
Here's what the four Westoe ward candidates have to say:
MICHAEL HAILEY (LIBERAL DEMOCRATS)
My name is Michael Hailey and I have had an 18-year military career which started when I left school.
I experienced many things during this period which shaped my future thoughts and feelings on many issues.
After leaving the forces in 2008 I started a teaching career, and started educating young people and adults in the further education sector.
I’m married with three grown up children and have strong beliefs in education for all, achievement, togetherness and community.
I feel locally the Liberal Democrats are the best party to work on what unites us, accountability in local governance and what we can do to support local residents.
ALLAN WEST (LABOUR PARTY)
I’m a retired teacher and my wife and I have lived in Westoe for nearly 30 years.
We have family living in the ward and I have been a member of the governing body for Westoe Crown School since it opened.
I have been a councillor for Westoe since 2010 and a member of the council’s cabinet for six years years.
My current responsibility is housing and transport having previously been adult social care and before that, public health.
I represent South Tyneside on outside bodies such as the North East Combined Authority and the Blind Welfare Association.
JACK WHITE (CONSERVATIVE PARTY)
I’m delighted to be standing as the Conservative Party candidate for Westoe.
Our council lacks accountability and scrutiny with 53 out of 54 Councillors all from Labour.
Our council needs a strong and effective opposition, that can come up with new ideas.
The regeneration of our town centre starts by making a great place to do business.
That’s why we would cut business rates and introduce free parking.
The Conservatives increased our vote by 75% in last year’s general election and I ask you to put national politics aside and consider voting Conservative if you’d like to see a strong opposition on our council.
NICOLA USHER (GREEN PARTY)
A vote for the Green Party is a vote for new, fresh ideas on the council.
The Labour Party currently has 53 of the 54 council seats and many people feel that this monopoly of power doesn’t serve the community well enough.
South Tyneside deserves better. Please vote Green on May 3rd.
By Chris Binding, Local Democracy Reporting Service