In a difficult election, in the midst of a pandemic, Labour’s vote held up well in some wards. Maya Evans thanks residents for their support and sets out how Labour will do all it can to help improve their lives.

In Maya’s acceptance speech at the Election Count at Horntye sports complex, this is what she said:

I would like to thank the residents of Hollington for turning out and putting their hope and faith in me. And a very special thanks to the many who have been frontline key workers., putting their lives on the line to look after others and keep this country running – you are heroes.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve spoken to hundreds of Hollington residents. Many said they were not going to vote, that they had lost faith in the political system due to recent Government sleaze and the poor handling of the Covid crisis.

Many have seen their quality of life decline over the last 11 years of austerity cuts. I hear your anger and I understand your feelings, and I will do everything in my power to shield Hollington residents against further austerity attacks.

My election campaign included the pledge to bring more youth activities to Hollington. It is a travesty that kids now congregate outside the perpetually locked Hollington youth centre, forced to sit on the streets, exposed to boredom and lack of opportunity – all the trappings which suck young people into anti-social behaviour.

‘It is a travesty that kids now congregate outside the perpetually locked youth centre’

Austerity has closed a youth centre which was once the beating heart of the community. Playgrounds in Hollington have been gutted, swings and slides removed and not replaced due to cost. This is not right, and I will do everything in my power to bring opportunity back to Hollington youth.

I have also pledged to lobby for improved housing repairs by landlords and to fix the roads which have been allowed to fall apart.

My residents were extremely inspired to hear about the work being done to tackle climate change and the aim to get Hastings to carbon neutrality by 2030. I describe myself as a ‘green Socialist’ – this means I recognise that if we are to successfully address climate change, residents on the lowest incomes must be prioritised first.

‘To successfully address climate change, residents on the lowest incomes must be prioritised first’

Their homes must be prioritised for retrofitting, and they must be prioritised for green employment training. It is not enough for small pockets of the town to transition, while leaving other parts behind – climate change will not stop at the doors of the well off. If we are to genuinely tackle climate change, we must take everyone with us.

I am proud to serve another term as the representative for Hollington. I pledge to help all residents, and I pledge to do all I can to bring opportunity to an overlooked but very brilliant part of our town.

Thanks to my team: Maya also gave a shout-out to her “incredible” team of canvassers and leafletters  – especially Maria, Gary, Julian, Christopher, Nadine, Steve, Paul and Jasmin and to her co-councillor Paul Barnett. She also thanked the returning officer, counting agents and HBC officers who made everything run smoothly.