[Petition]: Support Our Small Businesses in London

Support my campaign to pressure the Conservative government to do more for small businesses and give them the vital support they need to survive these difficult times.


After crashing the economy and pushing the UK into a recession, the Conservatives have failed small businesses across London and the UK, forcing many companies to close.

The small and medium business sector is the backbone and lifeblood of the British economy. As of 2023, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) account for 99.9% of the business population (5.6 million businesses).

I’m calling on all voters to join me in supporting our small businesses and to give our high street hope by calling on the UK government to abolish business rates.

Labour has pledged to abolish the current system of business rates if they are to win at the next general election, promising to undertake the “biggest overhaul of business taxation in a generation”. They have committed to replacing it with a fairer system for brick-and-mortar businesses. The Conservatives have failed to make this commitment.

Speaking on Labour’s proposals, Mike Cherry, the chair of the Federation of Small Businesses, has said:

“Business rates is a regressive tax…This proposal [by Labour] marks a welcome call to action…The gauntlet has been thrown down by the opposition, and we hope government ministers are listening. This is what a pro-small business tax policy looks like.”

As the Founder and Chair of SME4Labour my mission is simple: to bring the voices of small, medium, micro, owner and family-run businesses to the heart of our politics.

My story is the collective story of SME owners in every corner of the UK, regardless of background – it is the story of hard work and sacrifice.

As a 14-year-old Kurdish refugee, I knew I wanted to contribute to the country that had welcomed me. That determination took me from washing dishes and scouring kitchens to becoming a business owner with a chain of eateries in south London.

We must revitalise villages and market towns. We cannot allow our small businesses to continue to be left behind with failed economic policies.

I have launched and worked on countless campaigns to help communities nationwide. Find out more here.

Support my campaign to pressure the Conservative government to do more for small businesses and give them the vital support they need to survive these difficult times.

Get started and show your support today for our small businesses.


[Petition]: Support Small Businesses in London


My connection with, and love for, this country starts with my father. Born in Turkey, he worked in a marble mine – as my grandfather had before him – and was one of nine children brought up by my beloved grandmother. After saving some money, he was able to start a small stationery business, selling to retailers from the boot of his car. But after he got involved in political activism, he was targeted by the Turkish government and was forced to flee. He came to the UK in 1991, claiming asylum and then refugee status. I joined him, along with my mother and brother, in 1994 as part of a family reunion programme.

Things weren’t always easy in those early years in London. We lived four to a room and I was bullied at school for not speaking English. But we always felt grateful to be in a country where we were safe, could access education and receive the best care from the NHS if we were sick.

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Photo Credit: The Times