English regions need devolution like Wales and Scotland in order to change the “dysfunctional” political structure of the UK and solve regional inequality within the UK, according to a Yorkshire MP and Mayor.
Dan Jarvis, who is MP for Barnsley Central and Mayor of the Sheffield City Region, said Yorkshire had a larger population than Scotland, and could no longer be ignored.
He is one of the politicians who have contributed to former Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s review into the party’s future policy on devolution.
“The UK is more regionally unequal than any other comparable country, and the deprivation and economic pressure so many people are facing have been made much worse by the disruption of Covid,” Dan Jarvis told the Yorkshire Post.
“The Covid crisis has brought into stark relief just how dysfunctional our current political structures are, and how damaging the real-world consequences can be.”
He said those at the devolution review meeting – including Greater Manchester metro mayor Andy Burnham – had stressed how the need for reform was “not just about politics, it’s about prosperity”.
“Experience has repeatedly shown that we will never be able to address these deep-seated challenges with edicts from Whitehall: it needs long-term investment adapted to local needs and based on local experience and understanding,” Dan Jarvis said.
“Our recovery must not only draw on the great reserve of solidarity that exists across our community of nations and regions, it must also empower them.”