Kris Wragg

party: Green Party
constituency: Bassetlaw

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How would you reform surveillance law, oversight and practice to respect the rights of law-abiding people?

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

Mass surveillance does not work, it is technologically infeasible to monitor the sheer amount of network traffic that exists. Not to mention the fact that any intelligent person would encrypt their data thus obfuscating any useful information.

I believe the law should allow the investigation of suspected criminals, but in-depth surveillance should only be possible with a warrant which obviously requires probable cause. The average person should not have their privacy invaded by Government agencies who are 'protecting us'.

Recent polling show that people support rent control by a margin of nine to one. Do you support a rent control that limits rent rises between tenancies as well as during tenancies?

organisation: Generation Rent

I fully support bringing in legislation to ensure that rent prices are kept affordable and that prices do not rise faster than average wages. The Green Party would like to see rent increases linked to the Consumer Price Index so they are kept in line with salary increases.

To what degree should access to information on the internet be restricted by the state or private companies?

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

I don't believe that the state or private companies should be restricting information on the internet. In the same way I wouldn't expect a library not to stock a book that may or may not provide information that could lead to something bad.

That's not to say that certain things should not be blocked, I totally support the blocking of child pornography and taking extreme criminal action against those uploading / hosting it. But in terms of 'information' it should be freely available, we shouldn't as a state or ISP be decided what someone is allowed to read as there have been legitimate sites blocked such as self harm support groups and genuine religious websites.

Should people in Scotland and Northern Ireland have the same free speech protections from libel bullies as their neighbours in England and Wales?

organisation: English PEN

When writing / speaking publicly all people should have the right to free speech, the laws in different parts of the UK should be unified to avoid any ambiguity. There is of course a big difference between making factual statements that may offend someone, and outright lies or defamation of character and it should indeed remain illegal for someone to smear someone with known lies.

The standards of goods and services that are essential, such as food and water, are generally highly regulated. Do you support enforced minimum standards in housing as a precondition of a renting?

organisation: Generation Rent

Yes, I would like to see a mandatory licensing scheme for landlords and set minimum standards for homes including ensuring all rented accommodation meets at least energy efficiency grade C by 2025.

Britain spends £24 billion on housing benefit and less than £1.5 billion on building homes. Do you support an increase in the social housebuilding grant to £5 billion a year to build homes?

organisation: Generation Rent

The Green Party have pledged to build 500,000 homes by 2020, this would mean an increase to £6bn. The money coming from the £5.8bn that is current lost in tax due to interest rate tax relief given to private landlords.

Governments implement policies that directly and indirectly impact on house prices. Do you think house prices are too high?

organisation: Generation Rent

House prices and rents are rising faster than salaries, so yes house prices are becoming too high and unaffordable for many. One of the biggest problems is that we as a country are still allowing private banks to create money out of thin air and this is one of the biggest causes of house price inflation. Only the Green Party has taken on-board the Bank of Englands 2014 report on money creation and wishes to do something about it.

Private sector landlords receive over £27bn a year in housing benefit and tax breaks. Would you support a rent tax that recouped up to a third of this to fund new housing supply?

organisation: Generation Rent

The Green Party wish to clamp down on many of the landlord tax breaks including interest rate tax relief. An additional rent tax would likely be unnecessary once tax breaks and loopholes are dealt with. Also we'd like to see more social housing so that local authorities no longer need to pay as much to private landlords for housing benefit.

Would you support the creation of a Royal Commission to review Britain’s drug laws?

organisation: CISTA

Our current drug policies are idiotic, it's proven the war on drugs cannot be won. There has already been one review that the Government ignored, we should seriously consider decriminalising drug users and give them them the mental health support they need for their addiction. Many countries have seen a drop in hard drug use after decriminalising users, why we ignore the evidence I do not know.