Sunday, 19 October 2014

Write to your Assembly Members

Write to your London Assembly Members to demand a stop to the secret briefings and shady lobbying around the latest cycling proposals. The Canary Wharf PLC employees who failed to declare conflicts of interest need to be removed from TfL committees and have no chance to torpedo the plans.

Write to your Assembly Members

  1. Go to
  2. Type in your postcode and press 'Go'.
  3. Select 'Write to all your London Assembly list members' (you may need to scroll down).
  4. Write your email - advice on what to say below.
Note: you need to enter some personal details, this is to prevent spam and also to show you live in their constituency - it's important because it means the emails carry more weight.

What to say

Rather than send a standard email it is a much more powerful message if people say it in their own words, but to help you out we want people to share what they've said to inspire others. Please share the text of your email with everyone in the comments below. 

Here's something polite and to the point to get you started, please read & personalise it even just a little:

Dear London Assembly Members,
I would like to draw your attention to recent reports regarding Canary Wharf PLC in relation to TfL, in particular the proposals for new Cycling Superhighways. The reports include secret briefings and a potential conflict of interest by Peter Anderson, who is set to chair TfL's November finance committee which will decide whether to fund the Cycling Superhighways. 
As my representatives on the London Assembly I am calling for you to hold the mayor and TfL to account so they resolve this situation and, if shortcomings are found, follow up with any necessary changes.

We need to know if TfL committee members have undeclared conflicts of interests. Committee members with undeclared conflicts of interest must resign their positions. I am calling for the London Assembly to put pressure on the TfL board to establish conflicts of interest and take appropriate action as a matter of priority.

In addition TfL must review the processes for selecting committee members and ensuring they do not have undeclared conflicts of interest. Where conflicts of interest are discovered there should be procedures for reviewing past decisions which may have been affected. 
Finally I would like to highlight the lack of representation of cyclists and pedestrians on TfL boards. As key components of the mayor's transport strategy cyclists and pedestrians need to be part of TfL's decision making processes. 
I hope you will take action to make sure TfL's governance upholds it's aim to "provide safe, integrated, efficient and economic transport facilities that are in line with the priorities of all sections of society, established through consultation". 
I look forward to hearing from you on this matter and I ask that you keep me informed of action taken. 
Kind regards,

To provide further inspiration, here's an extract from an email by Simon at Stop Killing Cyclists:

"I am writing to express concerns about reports in the media regarding the lobbying of Canary Wharf Group against the proposed cycle lanes. 
Firstly there were reports in the Evening Standard from an anomynous source regarding a group of large London businesses who were against the proposals. Recent reports confirmed the anonymous source as being Canary Wharf Group and that they had paid an organisation to lobby against the proposals.  
Secondly, information regarding journey times in London provided by TFL was used misleadingly in the report issued by Canary Wharf Group. 
Thirdly and most worryingly it has been reported that Canary Wharf's Finance Director is also chairing a meeting held by TFL to discuss the funding of this proposal and that no conflicts of interest have been reported by Peter Anderson despite Canary Wharf's recent lobbying against the proposals. 
As someone who works in the Finance industry and who has worked at Canary Wharf, I am rather dismayed at these reports. I am also surprised at the concerns Carnary Wharf Group have given that the vast majority of people who work at Canary Wharf use public transport and that the proposed cycle highways are some distance from the area. 
I have nothing against those who have a different opinion to this proposed scheme, in fact discussion is be welcomed as this will lead to the best solution. What I do have concerns with is the apparent lack of transparency in Canary Wharf's actions to a proposed infrastructure that will benefit many members of the public and the reported conflict of interest."

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