Today I was pleased to be invited by the Gateshead Carers Action Forum for a general election hustings. I was joined by the Labour and Conservative hopefulls for Gateshead constituency. It was a really good session. the Conservative candidate stated her opinion that Carers allowance should be doubled and the Labour candidate expressed his desire to remove the problems of accessing respite. But Manifestos are only a guide apparently and there could be no promises in this hard economic time.
Well I (and the Liberal Democrats) beg to differ. We have a fully costed manifesto that makes our guarantee of a weeks respite for intensive carers and for restoring the earnings link of pensions possible. You can get these things if you want them.
I then had a chat with a resident of Wrekenton. She felt like she was at the edge of the constituency and felt she had more in common with Washington and Gateshead. I reassured her that, if elected, I would work hard for all these areas and hold regular surgeries in all the communities in the constituency.
Then it was back to the office and out canvassing. A lot of people out tonight but when I managed to find people they were very nice. People are genuinely thinking about how to vote in this election, which is only a good thing.