Wefan Gymraeg

Resetting the Dial - Kirsty Williams sets out roadmap for 2016

Kirsty Williams, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats has said today that she wants to 'reset the dial for the Welsh Liberal Democrats'.

In a keynote speech at the St David's Hotel, hosted by Deryn, Kirsty said:

"I am proud of the many achievements we secured in Westminster, but I will be blunt: today I want to draw a line under the last five years.

Being free from the shackles of coalition has given me, if I'm honest, a strong sense of liberation - a better chance to help mould my party into where I believe we should go next.

Sometimes, even from within, it felt like we were struggling to locate a compass to navigate our way through with our values unscathed

I want to reset the dial for the Welsh Liberal Democrats.

Already we have seen a huge jump in membership as many new members rush to ensure the voice of liberalism is heard. That is just the beginning.

We have a real job of work to do.  There are truths that we have to speak to ourselves and I will do that today. 

But others before me have faced tough times and, as I will do, they faced them with Liberal values – Welsh Liberal Democrat values – front and centre.

We are a party intent on spending the next year unashamedly clear on our Liberal message,

A party that knows that in Wales, as anywhere, greater wealth creation is a precondition for distributing that wealth

A party that is showing we have the fresh ideas to improve public services

A party who’s mission is to ensure everyone reaches their potential."

Kirsty set out a plan for the next year, in the run up to the 2016 Assembly Elections.

"We will strengthen our identity. The Welsh Liberal Democrats feel strong sense of national identity - we must communicate that. We have the deepest roots of any Welsh political party; yet unlike other parties, we embrace the Wales of today and we will speak for all of Wales, no matter who you are or where you live.

We will fight for the underdog. You have to be brave to be a liberal, but it's our liberal values that set us out from all the rest.  The Human Rights Act, the Green Agenda, mental health - we've proven that we lead on the issues that no-one else will. 

There is nothing progressive about poor public services. Over the coming months, the Welsh Liberal Democrats will be unveiling people focused policies - ones that show we are on the side of the pupil, the parent, the patients.

We will focus on opportunity. Our Pupil Premium, our extra investment in our schools, shows our commitment to fairness and equal opportunity. Over the coming months, we’ll build on this, unveiling a pro-enterprise vision that strengthens our economy and creates wealth."

You can read Kirsty's speech in full here, or listen to it below.

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