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Keep Southwark Safe

Cllr Kieron Williams elected as new Leader by Southwark councillors

16 September 2020

Tonight Cllr Kieron Williams has been elected as new Leader of Southwark Council.

Councillor Kieron Williams, Leader of Southwark Council, said: “I am honoured to be in this position, where I can take forward Southwark’s ambitions for the future and I would like to thank Cllr Peter John for his leadership over the past ten years. I am immensely proud of this borough, and community – and the resilience and determination they have shown through some of the hardest times recently. I will match that determination, to do all that I can to build a better future for them in every aspect. I look forward to meeting more of our amazing residents, and working with a superb cabinet to make it happen.”

The past six months of managing the response to the pandemic would challenge any organisation, and the council is no exception; but emergency plans quickly and smoothly fell into place to keep front line services running. Cllr Williams will lead and support the council’s dedicated care staff to continue to look after the most vulnerable people in the borough in our care homes and the community.

There is still much more to come, with worrying figures of infection across the country rising and extreme demand on the testing system. Councillor Williams will continue to lead strategically on the response, ensuring that services run to high standards and that the council goes above and beyond what is required to protect, support and reassure residents through the health worries, hardship and anxiety which they continue to cope with. Under his new leadership, support for the many residents and businesspeople who found themselves instantly unemployed will continue.

Councillor Williams will put equality and fairness at the heart of all that he does as Leader, and that will be embedded in continuing to deal with a crisis that has highlighted so much disparity. Tackling poverty, racism and inequality is a tough challenge, but not one that Cllr Williams will shy away from, with Southwark Stands Together, a project which aims to end racism in Southwark, already underway and gathering pace and an ambition to take out the root causes of poverty in all areas then develop service provision to tackle it.

After a successful tenure as cabinet member for housing management and modernisation, Cllr Williams will also take those bold housing ambitions forward as a key priority for Southwark’s residents. Cllr Williams’ passion for ending homelessness and rough sleeping will be at the forefront of his leadership.

As Leader, Cllr Williams is intent on seeing a bright future for the borough’s young people, to lift them up to reach their highest hopes, recognise the rich talent in the borough’s young population and ensure a solid educational start for children, not least since the recent crisis has been so hard for children and young people.

Their future rides not just on educational attainment, but also on an environment where they can live safely and breathe clean air. Tackling the Climate Emergency is a major project for the council, and one that Cllr Williams expects to happen by working collaboratively with and using the expertise of those with the keenest interest in climate change, and implementing the many ways that Southwark can be effective.

Page last updated: 21 September 2020