Chi said yesterday that she did not want to intrude on personal grief but to put Newcastle’s viewpoint in what had become a public debate on Baroness Thatcher’s legacy.
Speaking in Parliament, Chi said:
“[Her] most meaningful legacy in the north-east is the unemployment across the region.
“…contrast the huge bail-out that a Labour Government offered the financial services sector to protect jobs and investment with the brutal, bone-crushing and soul-destroying destruction that Margaret Thatcher’s Government offered the shipbuilding, steel and mining industries, losing those very skills which we now need so very much.
“Change was necessary, but it is the Government’s job to protect communities from the impact of change. That change could have been managed; there could have been a transition and that could have been invested in.”
Chi noted the North East private sector success story of Nissan that has been enabled by the support and investment of central Government, local authorities and unions.