Author: Natalie Bennett

Natalie (Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle) is a Green Party member of the House of Lords, having been leader of the party 2012–16. She lives in Sheffield, and works particularly on food and farming, universal basic income, and making the UK a democracy. The accent is Australian, in case you were wondering, but she moved to the UK in 1999.

The Queen’s speech and the House of Lords

Natalie Bennett
house of lords

Natalie Bennett writes about the Queen’s speech and the House of Lords, looking at the contrast between the representative nature of the Scottish parliament, and the attacks on democracy at Westminster. Ironically, the unelected House of Lords may be the only effective opposition.

The nature of the debate

Natalie Bennett

Politics in the UK is fossilised in an earlier time. With a setting which encourages confrontation and is hostile to women. Natalie Bennett writes: “politics needs to catch up with the modern world, and speak to all of our citizens.”

Government turning a blind eye to wildlife crime

Natalie Bennett

The UK is known as a nation of animal-lovers, yet it’s a terrible place to be a wild animal (or plant or fungus). For ours is one of the most nature-deprived countries on the planet, the “green and pleasant land” a pure fiction. Chief responsibility for that lies with the supermarket and multinational-dictated food system […]

The ‘internal market’ destruction of devolution

Natalie Bennett

Today, speaking in the House of Lords second reading of the internal market bill, my fellow Green peer Jenny Jones will be focusing on the aspect of the bill that has attracted the most attention – the insy, teeny, tiny (as the government would have you believe), breaking of international law. The rule of law […]

Protecting our nation’s interests from corporate sharks

Natalie Bennett

You might not think that you would ever settle down to read a short article on investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) procedures. You probably didn’t think the UK would Brexit. You might also be bitterly thinking of how the nation no longer wants to Brexit, but is now stuck with it. But please, stay with […]

Thousands face winter of homelessness as eviction ban ends

Natalie Bennett

Yesterday (Wednesday) the House of Lords debated motions expressing its – and many others’ – grave concern about the plight of many facing the threat of a winter of homelessness, with the Covid-19 emergency eviction ban ended. It was noted, in the dry, formal terminology of such things, that the legal change “will permit evictions […]

UK internal market bill: Henry VIII powers on steroids

Natalie Bennett

Unless you’ve just splashed down from Mars, you’ll have noticed that the government has got itself into a great deal of hot water over the internal market bill. Former prime ministers, of various hues, have lined up to express their horror at its cavalier, casual dismissal of international law and repudiation of a treaty that […]

Hen Harrier Day highlights the lifelessness of our landscape

Natalie Bennett

I’ve never been lucky enough to see a hen harrier. The closest I came was on Hen Harrier Day 2017 at the Rainham Marshes in Essex, when a marsh harrier came to patrol the wetlands, where hundreds of fans were listening to Chris Packham, Mark Avery and many other wildlife luminaries. The bird was, of […]

Lords call for government food strategy to protect food security

Natalie Bennett
assorted sliced fruits in white ceramic bowl

Last night after 8pm, some 16 hours into the debate of the 321 amendments to the agriculture bill, with Lords huddled over their laptops in remote parts of the country, you’d have to be a keen political wonk to have still been attached to Parliament TV. But Baroness Ritchie of Downpatrick described this part of […]

Farmers need access to good research and reliable advice

Natalie Bennett

Farming requires a huge number of skills and a vast amount of knowledge, all of which needs to be continually updated and revised as the environment – physical, legislative and market – changes. If you think about what the job description of ‘farmer’ involves, it runs the gamut from pharmacology to mechanical engineering, animal behaviour […]

Celebrate our wins

Natalie Bennett

Article published 19 June 2020 We’ve seen two screeching, high-profile U-turns from the government this week – on school meal holiday vouchers and the Covid-19 tracing app. But a further step in the reversal of a long-term Conservative policy – of backing fracking – has slid under the national political radar. Kwasi Kwarteng might be […]

Build back better: culture after covid

Natalie Bennett

“Build back better” is a phrase, and a hashtag, that’s being increasingly used in reference to an approach to societies learning to live with the threat of coronavirus for the foreseeable future. It’s a phrase that acknowledges that going back to the old ‘normal’ is not just impossible, but actively undesirable. Our societies were racked […]