Kate Pothalingam for Islington South and Finsbury

About Kate

Like many others, Kate was prompted to become politically active by the EU Referendum in 2016.  Disappointed by the outcome, she realised that simply talking about politics wouldn’t change anything; action was needed.  

One of the main reasons why Kate joined the Liberal Democrats in 2017 was because of the party’s clear and positive stance on Europe.   

However, the core liberal purpose of building and safeguarding a “fair, free and open society in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity” is what confirmed her decision.

Kate believes that reducing inequality must be a key goal. That we need to close gaps in living standards and opportunities as a way of improving social mobility.  The funding crisis in health and education exacerbates inequality, denying individuals the opportunity of better life chances.

As a parent of children with a diverse heritage, fostering an inclusive Britain, Kate believes that being open to the wider world is essential.  She believes our continued membership of the European Union would facilitate this.

Kate continues to express disappointment that the current member for Islington South and Finsbury, Emily Thornberry does not seem to want to speak out in unequivocal support of a People’s Vote, despite the high level of support from Islington’s residents for remaining in Europe.  Staying in Europe will be better for the economy and for public finances – providing resources to tackle the fundamental issue of inequality.

Policy priorities:

Although very willing to listen to feedback and suggestions, Kate’s initial policy priorities will be:

  • Schools: Ensuring our schools have the funding and resources they need so every child can reach their full potential
  • Adult-learning: Providing adults with the opportunities they need to learn new skills and improve their ability to get and hold on to meaningful work
  • Health: Investing in the NHS as well as the long-neglected area of mental health so everyone can access the care they need when they need it
  • Environment: Doing our part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and encourage innovation to reduce the impact of climate change on our children

About Kate

Kate has lived in Islington for over 30 years and is married to Ketish (who came to the UK from Sri Lanka in 1967).  Their first home together was on St. Paul Street, just off the New North Road and they have 3 children, all of whom have grown up in the borough.

Her first job, after graduating from SOAS, was in Clerkenwell at Help the Aged.  She has since spent 25 years working in financial services where she was an active member of her company’s women’s group and a mentor. Supporting and developing women to help them progress into senior positions in her field has been an important aspect of her professional life. Kate currently works part-time providing training.

An active campaigner

Even before becoming a Lib Dem, Kate was an active campaigner on issues that affect her local community and since stopping full-time work, she has been able to contribute more, becoming Treasurer of her street’s resident association and is currently Membership Secretary and Interim Chair of the Highbury Fields Association.  

Kate also sits on the steering committee of the women’s network run by a finance industry trade association, continuing her efforts to support junior women in the sector.

Kate stood in the Local Elections in Highbury East in May 2018 and enjoyed campaigning and engaging with residents on the doorstep.   Despite not winning a seat, the ward had the highest turnout of any in Islington, a testament to the enthusiasm of the campaign team.

This is a great chance to look ahead and rebuild and an exciting time for the party in Islington. Membership numbers are high and, judging from our campaigning, people really want to hear our message.  The Lib Dem fightback has started, and Kate wants to carry that fight forward as a prospective parliamentary candidate in Islington South and Finsbury.


Contact Kate

Kate knows that politics works best if we listen to each other, exchanging views and offering support where it’s needed:









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