We need to let Londoners run London

The capital needs a programme of devolution to boroughs and the Mayor to deliver more effective, integrated services at lower cost 

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Our call for devolution is built on the belief that in cities such as London, it is local leaders that are best-placed to make the right decisions regarding infrastructure investment to deliver sustainable growth and it is local people who deserve to see the proceeds of that economic growth reinvested in their communities and services.

Whoever wins the next election will be hard pressed to reform Whitehall's instinct to push on with national programmes that are increasingly out of step with the economic and social realities, not just of the capital, but of cities across the country.

In London, we're confident our boroughs can deliver more effective, integrated services at lower cost by working in strengthened partnership with the Mayor and each other. I know from talking to the leaders of other core cities that they share similar ambitions.

Putting the two together against the backdrop of an unprecedented funding challenge - a funding gap of over £3.4bn within London by 2020 - I'm hopeful that national politicians will recognise that the only way to deliver high-quality, integrated public services that connect with the real challenges facing communities and businesses is to devolve to local government.

It's important to recognise that, for London's boroughs, shifting the conversation between London government and national government from "centralisation by default" to "devolution by default" is about more than just an attempt to win power for power's sake, or to lay claim to a larger share of scarce financial resources.

Local councils are uniquely placed to develop joined-up services that tackle the root causes of complex dependency, avoiding the expensive consequences of the failure of national programmes, and making use of our borough's strong links to local businesses and communities to deliver better targeted, more effective services at lower cost.

Through a programme of devolution to boroughs and the Mayor, we can improve employment support for those furthest from work; transform the way in which training providers are incentivised to respond to the skills needs of business; radically improve services to tackle reoffending through local integration; enhance and extend local initiatives to support families with complex needs; build on local government's new public health role; and, deliver more of homes London so badly needs.

You can join our campaign to let Londoners run London here.

Jules Pipe is the Labour Mayor of Hackney and Chair of London Councils. You can watch the Let Londoners Run London campaign video here.

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