In 2017, the North-South divide is wider than at any time since the industrial revolution. Westminster has failed the North of England. It has given us a housing crisis, a creaking transport system and a low-wage economy. It has taken hope away from a generation of our young people, making them the target for cuts.
Manchester has never liked being told what to do. Instead, it has often been the source of disruption and innovation. It gave birth to the trades union movement and was the home of the Suffragettes. Now Greater Manchester needs to come to the service of UK politics again.
It needs to lead a new democratic revolution and pioneer new forms of civic engagement - where people don't just look at politics from the outside in, but take control. I want to give an open invitation to anyone who wants to change politics for the better to get involved in this campaign.
If I am Mayor next year, young people will be my priority for investment, not my target for cuts. I want a Greater Manchester where all kids are school-ready at age 4 and where all teenagers know there is a future waiting for them at the end of school. I want to help people in their 20s get a decent and affordable place to rent or own and promote the building of new council housing.
Over the next three months, I am going to ask the people of Greater Manchester to help me write a manifesto for its future. There will be a series of open policy events on young people, housing, transport, health and care, public safety and inclusivity and, finally, industry and economy. I want businesses, charities, schools, community groups, voluntary organisations to get involved.
Let's put the values of people here - fairness, decency and solidarity - to the service of the people of this country and show it is possible to give people real answers based on hope not hate.
Andy Burnham MP
Labour's Candidate for Greater Manchester Metro Mayor