Shameful attack on Liverpool Community Independents councillor and candidate has backfired on Labour. Skwawkbox has unpicked one of its biggest lies
Labour’s shameful use of its sewer-campaign tactics in Liverpool to attack a popular young left-wing councillor has predictably backfired – and managed the unprecedented feat of uniting all the city council’s opposition parties in condemnation.
The party’s cowardly leaflet – which doesn’t even mention that it’s from Labour except in the tiny, legally-required ‘imprint’ down the side – made a string of atrocious smears against Cressington councillor Sam Gorst – and also showed how out of touch the Labour right is with the people of Liverpool.
The leaflet accused Gorst of disrespecting the Queen and even of being a councillor in the ‘leafy’ Garston area of Cressington – which is being amalgamated by the Tories into the new, single Garston ward – but the Labour councillor who promoted the leaflet on behalf of the party’s right-wing candidates also represents ‘leafy’ Cressington, while one of Labour’s candidates is a barrister who is unlikely to live on a working-class estate and the other was exposed in Liverpool’s recent scandal of councillors having parking tickets cancelled.
And one of the smears attacked Gorst by implying – Labour doesn’t quite have the guts to say it outright – that he jumped the housing queue by getting a property in eight months when most wait four years.
But of course, as with all such spineless smears, the reality is very different. While Sam Gorst has not stooped to engage with the smears, Skwawkbox has done the digging to bring readers the truth to counteract Labour’s lies.
Seven years, not eight months
While Labour claims he received a property in only eight months, in reality Gorst – who unlike Labour’s candidates has lived in Garston throughout – first joined the social housing queue with an application to South Liverpool Homes in early 2016 – more than seven years ago – and has been on the housing association’s register since April of that year. For four years, Gorst and his family – like so many in the UK’s blighted housing landscape – lived in damp, privately-rented housing in a poor state of repair. In July 2020, the family was offered a starter tenancy with the housing association.
Gorst and his partner split in February last year. His partner remained in the property and Gorst became effectively homeless for eight months, ‘sofa surfing’ until he finally found a flat on Stanley Street last autumn.
But while this was eight months after he moved out of his housing association home, it was not through any housing waiting list or the Property Pool Plus system, as Gorst was working full time. Instead, as the property was considered ‘hard to let’, it was advertised through online estate agent Rightmove.
Gorst was offered the flat after a video call and affordability check and completed the starter tenancy last October.
These facts were not particularly hard to uncover. Labour either didn’t bother finding out – or just as likely knew full well and decided to tell the lie anyway. The party’s claim that it’s smears are factual is just one more lie.
If you live in Garston, vote for Gorst and his fellow Community Independents candidate Lucy Williams – and if you live in other parts of the city with LCI candidates or viable candidates from other parties, vote for them. Labour needs to learn that people will not tolerate its games, lies and abuse.
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