London would not be London without its Jewish community and I am extremely proud of my own small share in that heritage. As mayor, I will celebrate and protect it.
But London has a problem. Anti-Semitism is on the rise, sometimes overt, sometimes in the guise of anti-Zionism. In Paris, Jews are leaving in record numbers because they feel they don’t have a future in France. That must never happen in our city.
So, as mayor, I will make it absolutely clear where London stands.
I will instruct the Met to take a zero-tolerance approach to hate crime. And in Barnet, for example, which is one of several areas that has a particular problem with anti-Semitic attacks, I have committed funds for extra police. I will also maintain overall officer numbers at 32,000, put 500 extra officers on the Tube and will back the Met to increase the number of armed officers.
I will also be an unambiguously pro-Israel mayor. I am committed to even stronger ties between London and the Middle East’s only democracy and will support a major Tel Aviv festival in our city next year.
The security of Londoners is my number one priority, but Jewish Londoners want what we all want: housing that’s affordable to a young couple on an average salary, a transport system that can cope with our booming population, air that’s safe to breathe.
My Action Plan for Greater London will deliver more homes, better transport, cleaner air and safer streets. It’s a plan to keep our economy strong and it’s all paid for while freezing council tax.
Crucially, it’s a plan that can actually be delivered.
London depends on central government for its powers and funding, so the next mayor will have to work with this Conservative government to secure the best possible deal. My record shows that’s exactly what I’ll do.
As an MP, I’ve stood up for my constituents, and at the last election they backed me with the biggest increased majority of any MP in the country. Now I want the chance to deliver for London. Back me on 5 May and I will a make a great city greater still.