General Election 2019: Local GP selected as North Devon labour candidate

Dr Finola ONeill has been chosen as the prospective parliamentary candidate for the North Devon Labo

Dr Finola ONeill has been chosen as the prospective parliamentary candidate for the North Devon Labour Party. Picture: North Devon Labour - Credit: North Devon Labour

A local GP has been selected by the North Devon Labour Party as their candidate in the expected December 12 General Election.

Dr Finola ONeill from Braunton was chosen by local party members at a hustings in Barnstaple on October 22.

A General Election has not been officially called but the December 12 date has been approved by MPs and looks highly likely to go ahead if it is rubber stamped by the House of Lords.

Dr ONeill is a local GP who has worked in North Devon for 10 years - in A and E and then at local surgeries in North Devon and Torridge. She lives in Braunton with her husband Dave.

She is studying an MA in Law and volunteers at a Law Clinic which she says has given her a good understanding of problems presented by the health, social care, housing and bene?ts systems.

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She is also a committed environmentalist and is an active supporter of Extinction Rebellion and the School Climate Strikes.

She told the selection meeting: "The next election cannot be about Brexit alone - Labour is committed to giving the people a ?nal say on any deal but ?rst we need to address the needs of our community, suffering like the rest of the country after 10 years of austerity.

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"We need to tackle low pay and uncertain work contracts, address the high cost of housing, and the threat to our NHS posed by stealth privatisation and cuts upon cuts. We need to protect our elderly with free personal care for all, not limited by means testing.

"The climate crisis is time critical and the next term of government will prove decisive. We need a massive expansion of affordable public transport and renewable energy. We need to build on the impressive grass roots movements we have seen in the last year from Extinction Rebellion and the School Climate Strikes with a comprehensive program of legislation and investment which the next Labour government will provide.

"We will create local Climate Forums in North Devon to work with the community and be guided by their collective knowledge and skills.

"I will seek to represent all of the constituents of North Devon and ?ght for their needs and problems in the way that I have for my patients in my 20 years as a doctor."

In the North Devon constituency, sitting Conservative MP Peter Heaton-Jones will be looking to defend his seat and his 4,332 majority.

The Liberal Democrats are set to choose their prospective parliamentary candidate (PPC) in the next few days, while district councillor Robbie Mack will be standing for the North Devon Green Party.

Dawn Westcott will stand for The Brexit Party in North Devon. It is not yet know if UKIP will field a candidate this time.

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