Sep - Dec 2020 Newsletter

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Welcome to our second newsletter of 2020 - a quick round-up of recent happenings and upcoming opportunities for our members and supporters outside Europe.

 

A Quick Word from LDO Chair George Cunningham

COVID-19 is having a devastating effect on our lives. Second waves and other resurgences of the virus have appeared around the world. May I wish all our members and supporters health and resilience in these difficult times. Nonetheless, as you will read, being locked down has meant our (g)local party has increased the tempo of its activities as we normally work virtually. We want to have more engagement with our members and supporters so please read on!

Congratulations to Sir Ed Davey as our New Lib Dem Leader

Ed is a veteran amongst our Lib Dem MPs: 30 years in the party; 20 years in Parliament; and 5 years in Government. Ed has set off on a listening tour around the UK to rebuild the party by bringing it closer to the people. Ed has promised to appoint a peer to represent Brits living in Europe and another for overseas – the first step in having our own representation in Parliament. We look forward to working with him.

 

Layla Moran - a Great Choice for our Foreign Affairs Spokeperson

From her experience growing up in a range of countries around the world, to her position on human rights and speaking up for marginalised groups - Layla is an articulate internationalist who will actively hold the Government to account and build bridges across the globe.  As Lib Dems Overseas, we will provide her with insights from where we live and give full-hearted support where required.

Lib Dems Overseas Party Leadership Hustings Video

Members who want to know about our new Leader’s and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson’s views on foreign policy and helping Brits overseas, should see: https://www.libdemsoverseas.com/recording_of_leadership_hustings_for_lib_dems_abroad. This special hustings for Lib Dems in France, in Europe and Overseas show progress being made within the party to assist those abroad.

 

Virtual Autumn Conference: All from Overseas can participate. Please register!

COVID-19 has brought an unexpected benefit for us: we can all participate at the party’s annual conference virtually from our homes abroad! And Lib Dem President Mark Pack wants this to continue for us. Please sign up for conference now at:  www.libdems.org.uk/autumn-conference We’ll be having a fringe event Frozen Pensions to Lost Pensions on Sunday 27th 13:00-13:50hrs BST, with Baroness Sal Brinton and John Duffy, Chair of British Consortium of Pensioners.

North American Branch kicks off US Elections Virtual Campaigning Study

The recently formed LDO North American Branch (NAB) is establishing itself as the community and focal point for UK Liberal Democrats living in Canada, the Caribbean and USA. The NAB facilitates monthly political discussions and fosters outreach in the region. It also works to capture key insights from the US elections to help the UK party strengthen campaigning and policy development. Join us!

Contact Branch Chair Mark Iliffe: markiliffe@gmail.com

Afghan Liberal Democrat Caucus to be formed in Parliament/Wolesi Jirga

LDO has been providing advice to a group of current and former MPs in Afghanistan who wish to see gains in human and women’s rights maintained in any settlement arising from intra-Afghan talks with the Taliban. In August, the LDO Chair acted as Returning Officer electing Mr Gul Ahmad Kamin MP as Leader of the upcoming caucus in the Afghan Parliament. Member Ms Raihana Azad MP appeared in the New York Times’ international edition on 8th September.

 

LDO Webinar “Geopolitics in the Time of COVID-19”

The Paddy Ashdown Forum hosted LDO’s first webinar which can be viewed at:

https://www.libdemsoverseas.com/paddy_ashdown_forum_event Dr Christine Cheng, University College London, and Paul Reynolds, Geopolitical adviser, were the speakers. Moderator was LDO Chair George Cunningham. The session looked at how COVID-19 had accelerated existing trends including China’s rise.

National Security Law imposed on Hong Kong impacts our Members

Following the disqualification of 12 candidates, the Hong Kong government has postponed holding Legislative Council elections scheduled for 6 September 2020. LDO has submitted an amendment to motion F31 on "Hong Kong's Future" at Autumn Conference, to be debated on Monday 28th September, 18.50hrs UK time. Please help us inform party policy by taking part in a short on-line survey on Hong Kong here: https://www.libdemsoverseas.com/hksurvey

 

Frozen Pensions Campaign Gaining Traction

On 28th July, we sent our submission on unfreezing British pensions to the newly-established UK All Party Parliamentary Group. It covered the history and evolution of one of the biggest injustices inflicted on half a million pensioners. https://www.libdemsoverseas.com/ldo_submission_to_appg_on_frozen_pensions

For getting involved in the lobbying campaign, please contact our LDO Head of Policy: Colin Bloodworth colin.bloodworth@ppi-advisory.com

Aussie and Kiwi LDO Virtual Pub Chat - Sunday 13th September

Want to reminisce about good ol’ UK Lib Dem Days or make new friends holding the same values? Our first ANZ Lib Dems Virtual Pub Chat will be held at 8:00pm AEST on Sunday 13th September. Please reach out to Adib Murshed in Melbourne, email: adib@flatfur.com if you would like to attend. Any member finding it convenient to join the ANZ time zone from another place is most welcome too!

 

Join us in our LDO Virtual ASEAN pub – Thursday 17th September

Lib Dem Members from Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and other ASEAN countries will be meeting virtually at 6:30pm SG/KL, 5:30pm BKK/JKT on Thursday 17th September, to discuss politics, lock down, or even just the weather. Please join us by emailing Nicklord98@gmail.com in Singapore for details. Anyone finding it convenient to join from East Asia and other places is most welcome too!

 

Plenty of Articles from Overseas Members in Lib Dem Voice

LDO Executive members have been prolific in the past four months in writing 11 articles in Lib Dem Voice on subjects ranging from Votes for Life, British Overseas Territories, Brits welfare, climate change, China and frozen pensions. Please see: https://www.libdemsoverseas.com/lib_dem_voice_articles Contact Vice- Chair Caroline Padbury carolinepadbury@hotmail.com if you would like to write an opinion piece of around 500 words and have it published online.

 

Journal of Liberal International British Group (Interlib) available too

Lib Dems affiliated to Liberal International has asked us to advertise their Interlib magazine published more or less bimonthly which can be viewed online at: https://libg.co.uk/en/document#document

Articles covered a wide range of compelling international stories from a liberal perspective. LIBG is not a local party so any member can join it at: https://libg.co.uk/en/page/join-libg


Contact Us:

Chair’s Email: gfjcunningham@gmail.com

Email: webmaster@libdemsoverseas.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LibDemsOverseas/

Twitter: @LibDemsOverseas

Published and promoted by George Cunningham on behalf of the Lib Dems Overseas