Waseem Zaffar MBE was born, raised and has lived in Lozells all his life. He has represented the Lozells and East Handsworth Ward at Birmingham City Council since 2011. He also serves as a Non Executive Director at Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, the Hospital he was born at. Waseem has previously sat as a Justice of Peace at the Birmingham Magistrates Court and in 2012 was awarded an MBE for charitable services.
“Too often politicians and decision makers do not engage with those that they claim to represent.
Too often young people are ignored yet we claim to make important decisions for their future.
I’m thrilled to be engaging with children from 5 brilliant schools in the Lozells neighbourhood – our secondary school Holte and the four primary schools of Lozells, Angelsey, St Francis and Heathfield who have created the Lozells Youth Council. This is the brainchild of a group of activists called Lozells First who have been supported by the Heart of England Community Foundation.
They are leading a series of debates at the Birmingham Council House Chamber, designed by the young people, delivered by the young people and debated by the young people.
Out of this, they will develop a Lozells Youth Manifesto. A manifesto belonging to the young people of Lozells, and not any politician or political party.
The Councillor elected at the May local election, hopefully me, will be expected to deliver on the pledges identified in the manifesto. The young people will continue to meet to ensure that their Councillor is held to account.
This process is absolutely vital for a strong democracy. This process is essential to ensure our young people feel a sense of ownership with decision making in Lozells.
They feel a sense of identity with their neighbourhood. A strong sense of belonging and a stake in society.
I’m sure you’ll agree with me that this is a unique step in democratic participation in our city.
I want Lozells to be a place where all sections of society, young and old, people of all faith and none, men and women, are fully engaged in decision making.
If you’ve got any ideas to help make this happen, or anything else you would like to share with me about your priorities for our neighbourhood, please drop me a line.
Councillor Waseem Zaffar MBE