Whilst the actual great reform bill only began to be debated last week, it is Brexit which has dominated the parliamentary agenda – from the Prime Minister’s lonely presence at the European Council to the Brexit Secretary’s refusal to publish the Brexit Impact Papers which illustrate the damage the Government’s Hard Right Cliff Edge Brexit will do to the economy and particularly the North East.
The Tory party remains riven by backbiting, self interest and incompetence although their fear of a Labour Government may enable May to hang on for some time to come what is clear is that a Brexit in the interests of the many is not possible on their watch.
The sexual harassment investigations have rightly spread to Parliament with a Secretary of State already resigning as a consequence. It should be clear that this affects all parties and also that whilst complaints are being investigated the victims/complainants deserve our respect and their anonymity. The Labour Party has put in place robust new processes and I have personally taken the issue up with the Speaker, our Chief Whip and the Chair of the Women’s PLP.
Backing WASPI women
Backbench and Constituency Role
- I was present and participated in major events associated with Freedom City, the Newcastle Gateshead celebration of 50 years since Martin Luther King was given an honorary Doctorate by Newcastle University, including the unveiling of a new statue at Newcastle University and the Freedom on Tyne day.
- I raised the issue of leasehold reform in Leazes Park in an Adjournment debate I called in Parliament, highlighting the situation of constituents unable to extend their leaseholds because the freehold is held by the Mary Magdelene and Holy Jesus Trust.
- I spoke a further eight times from the backbenches, including:
- oral questions to the Transport Secretary (on investment in the Tyne and Wear Metro), the Chancellor of the Exchequer (on transport investment), the Brexit Secretary (on the international links of universities in Newcastle), the Health Secretary (on dental care inequalities), and the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (on data rights).
- speaking in debates on the Universal Credit Rollout and Sexual Harassment in Parliament.
- I asked 55 written questions to Ministers.
Unveiling of Martin Luther King statue at Newcastle University
Shadow Ministerial Role
- I was asked to go on Any Questions as Shadow Minister for Industrial Strategy. It was an interesting experience.
- I spoke at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at University of Austin Texas, at their Conference of European Reform with Yanis Varoufakis and Benoit Hamon. The presentations, including the special message I delivered from Jeremy Corbyn are here, and the film of the sessions here.
- We continue to work on our industrial strategy missions and an industrial strategy tour.
Media, Organisation & visits
Quoted regularly in local media and nationally inc R5 Live Weinstein interview, Around the House filming , Sky interview Weinstein, Radio 4, Daily Politics. Wrote a number of blogs including on automation and work.
Backing our Fire Fighters
Meetings and visits
APPG Fourth Industrial Revolution, NUJ Ofcom, John Jenner, Natural Environment Research Council , Consumer Council for Water, Unison day of Action Pay up now, British Lung Foundation, Paul Morris Vodafone, Association of British Insurers, AP Post Office, Construction Products, IOP Business Innovation Awards, US & Newcastle film festival director, Black British Business Awards, Dynamo Dynamites Awards, Nigerian Alumni Association visitors, Princes Trust/Capgemini Get Started with Apps, Christina Ellis Funding opportunities North East, National Black History Month tea, Unison working together with MPs, Ray Cross Digital Service, How should we manager and use data in the 21st century, Commission from Malawi, Bangladeshi women from Newcastle in Parliament, Food Standards Agency, Jet 2, Love Your Firefighters, UK Research & Innovation, Cavendish Nuclear, Etsy, Stroke Care , MLK meeting, Joe Docherty Newcastle College. Food & Drink Exporters Association, Northern Cultural Projects,
Excelsior Academy students who were inspired by a visit to CERN
Freedom on the Tyne, Association of Directors of Environment, Planning & Transport (ADEPT), Northern Powerhouse, Robert Peston book launch, Ombudsman Services, British Beer & Pub Association, Gemcorp, DCMS roundtable Creative Industries, Dark Matter Day, FDM, Aviva, Combatting Risk in the digital Age, Festival of Learning 2017, Labour’s Black History Month, Mastercard, Microsoft, AFBE-UK 10th Anniversary, Worley Parsons, Craig Charles Freedom City, Hilton Primary Remembrance Service, USDAW street stall, Construction Alliance, Tedco, Connected Health Cities, Labour North Gala Dinner, George Forster, Afro-Caribbean dining event, Brunswick Remembrance Service, University MLK Statue Launch, Food Bank Venerable Bede, TUC, Newcastle City Council Parks, Eaton Electrical Corp, Fairer Game, Radiotherapy benefits event, New Statesman launch spotlight : Skills, EQuensWordline payments provider, Aeferion Pharmaceuticals, Dr Reynolds, Beats, Respect, Healthwatch, Excelsior Academy, Changing Lives, Financial Conduct Authority
Remembrance Day at Hilton Primary
Black Business Show, AFBE Anniversary Filming, Cultural Research interview Box 1824, Confederation of Paper Industries, Student Newspaper Newcastle interview, Equality Awards Newcastle, CQC Black History Month lecture, Show Racism the Red Card, University Nigeria Alumni Association event, Smart Power Industries Alliance, Newcastle University/Seven Stories gender project, Unison regional conference, Conference for Europe in Texas, Women’s meeting Rohingya, , Freedom City Bravo 22, Martin Luther King recitation Freedom City, ITV Freedom City, Voices of Virtue Freedom City , BBC World at One, INCA