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Newsdesk chief stands for office after blasting government PR efforts

Lucy Stephenson 1A newsdesk chief is standing for office in a bid to make government communication better.

Jersey Evening Post assistant editor Lucy Stephenson will stand as an independent in Jersey’s forthcoming general elections, which will decide the 49 members of the island’s States Assembly.

Lucy, a former JEP political correspondent, says she will leave her current role at the newspaper if she is elected on 22 June.

The 35-year-old told the paper she is standing on a platform focusing on diversity, transparency and better government communication.

She said: “For years I have called for more women to stand for election, for different groups to stand up for what they believe in, for people my age to engage with local politics and for greater diversity in thought and approach in our decision-making processes – now it’s time for me to try to be a part of the solution, not just talk about it.

“If elected, I intend to put the principles of fairness, equality, transparency and accountability at the heart of my work.”

Lucy has previously had a number of run-ins with the island’s authorities and says its government “often fails to effectively communicate with Islanders in a meaningful way”.

In 2019, she criticised States of Jersey chief executive Charlie Parker after he accused the JEP of giving negative stories “much more prominence” than positive ones.

And last year Lucy hit out at the island’s health director general Caroline Landon over plans to keep a key report secret amid fears of “sensational” media reporting.

She added: “As a mother of young children, sat at home during the height of the pandemic trying to juggle work and home-schooling, helping to support relatives who were shielding and anxiously trying to make sense of the world we found ourselves in, I rarely felt ‘spoken to’ by our government.

“The public health messages and the support for businesses were hugely important, of course, but where was the compassion, the reassurance?

“The current government has forgotten what it is like to put real, everyday Islanders at the heart of its decisions and its communications – that needs to change.”