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Diane Abbott

Shadow home secretary, Labour MP for Hackney North

Tories Must Stop Playing Politics With People's Lives

When is one life more important than another? Or, to put more starkly, when is it permissible to risk people burning to death in their own homes, but others must be protected? According to this government the answer seems to be; We will protect MPs by installing sprinklers, but everyone else can take their chances.
16/11/2017 15:59 GMT

New Data Laws Declare Open Season On Migrant Rights - It Could Be You Next

Data protection laws going through Parliament this week propose to exempt individuals' data privacy rights for the 'maintenance of effective immigration control' or 'the investigation or detection of activities that would interfere with effective immigration control'. What is meant by 'effective immigration control' and 'interference' are undefined and therefore open ended.
31/10/2017 16:19 GMT

Britain's Brutal Immigration Detention System

Immigration detention and the abuses related to it get far less attention than they should. This is largely because it concerns immigrants and, in the current toxic state of the debate around immigration, it is hard to excite public and media concern. That makes it even more praiseworthy that the BBC devoted a whole <em>Panorama</em> programme to the shocking and brutal conditions in Brook House detention centre.
07/09/2017 16:07 BST

We Must Not Lose Sight Of The Human Beings Still Caught Up In The Grenfell Tragedy

One thing that quickly became clear in the course of the meeting was that many of the things that government ministers claim are happening to help the survivors are not happening at all. My strongest impression is of continuing chaos. For some survivors English is not their first language but very little information or written advice appears to be in translation. There is still no central crisis centre where all who have been affected can go and get help... The media circus will move on from Grenfell. But we need to continue to focus, not only on the architectural and regulatory issues, but the human beings caught up in this tragedy and how they can get the help and support they will need far into the future. 
30/06/2017 21:04 BST

Bulldozing The Calais 'Jungle' Did Not Solve The Challenge Of Migrants On The Move - It Merely Displaced It

Child refugees have been emphatically failed by the British government. Wanting to help children is a worthy impulse. But in the end we have to engage with, both the children and, their families. Waves of migrants are moving across Western Europe driven by war and famine. So far European governments have tried to deal with the problem with barbed wire, walls, bulldozing encampments and criminalising the migrants themselves. There has to be a better and more sustainable response. We need much more genuine co-operation between European governments, whether they are in Schengen or not. Sadly, with Britain leaving the EU, better co-operation seems further away than ever.
05/04/2017 08:23 BST

If The Tories Are Serious About Money Laundering, They Aren't Showing It

Without hyperbole, this really would be a threat to our way of life, replacing the current inadequate system of financial regulation and beleaguered public services with a Wild West of low regulation, low taxation, minimal public services and no questions asked for international finance. Labour will tackle this cancer, even if the Tories won't.
22/02/2017 13:48 GMT

The Tories Are Failing Victims Of Crime

The Tory government is breaking one if its key manifesto pledges and is completely failing to increase support for victims of crime. Parliament is currently deliberating the Policing and Crime Bill. Colleagues in both the Lords and the Commons have put forward a series of amendments which would increase the rights of victims and make the public sector more responsive to their needs. The government rejected them all.
12/01/2017 09:22 GMT

International Students Benefit Us All. Government Policy Makes Us Poorer

The current Home Secretary and her predecessor act as if international students are a drain on the British economy and British society. It has been argued that there were large numbers of international students who overstayed their visas and so contributed to the breach of their immigration target. Both these claims are false.
12/12/2016 09:26 GMT

Labour Will Overturn Tories' Disgraceful Decision To Deny An Orgreave Inquiry

There are few things in politics that are truly shocking. But Home Secretary Amber Rudd's decision to deny any Inquiry at all into the incidents at the Orgreave coking plant in 1984 and subsequent events definitely falls into that category. There was widespread disbelief and anger on the Opposition benches following the announcement... This denial of truth and justice cannot stand. The OTJC will not simply go away. Trade unionists, the labour movement, and all those who believe the state should not be above the law will continue this fight. And Labour in Government will grant a full public Inquiry on day one in office.
31/10/2016 18:31 GMT

The Prevent Strategy Isn't Working

The majority of this strategy is aimed at the Muslim community. It has an alienating effect of a community already experiencing discrimination and rising hate crime. In the past, it would have been others and who knows who it might be used against in future. It is all entirely counter-productive. There is no evidence that it has prevented anything. It is time for a major review of the strategy and a fundamental rethink by Government.
19/10/2016 17:40 BST

STPs - A Dagger Pointed At The Heart Of The NHS

The Government has initiated 44 Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) for the NHS in England. Under this innocuous-sounding title lies a major threat the continued existence of the NHS... The effects will be equally devastating, with the closure of beds, of key units including paediatric, maternity and cardiovascular and of whole A&E departments which are now bearing the brunt of the cuts elsewhere in the NHS. Entire hospitals will close in The Black Country and in Leicestershire, while many others including Cheshire and Merseyside will have 'fewer beds'. The plans are based on wilful self-delusion.
14/09/2016 10:31 BST

Junk Food Infiltrates Rio Olympics

It is time that Olympics stopped giving one message about health and fitness through the games themselves, but a completely different message through the sponsors they choose. It is no wonder that the 2012 Olympics, although a wonderful spectacle, did not result in an improvement in health and fitness in the UK.Sadly the same will be true of Brazil. There needs to be an end of junk food sponsorship of the Olympics and Team GB should never again be sponsored by an alcohol company.
24/08/2016 08:11 BST

Day Four at the Democratic Convention

This National Convention is all about Hilary. But last night Barack Obama gave his last speech as President of the United States of America to a Democratic National Convention and, as he put it, "passed the baton on" to Hilary Clinton. It was a great speech.
29/07/2016 11:28 BST

Day Three at the Democratic Convention

The Democratic National Convention made history last night. It was the first time that the partner of the presidential nominee got to do anything other than look up adoringly at their beloved. Instead this partner got to speak for a whole hour eulogising their mate. But this partner was President Bill Clinton and the presidential nominee was his wife of over forty years Hilary Rodham Clinton.
27/07/2016 15:28 BST

Day Two of the Democratic Convention

It took a black woman, in the shape of Michelle Obama, to bring some semblance of unity to the Democratic National Convention on its opening day on Monday. Boisterous Bernie Sanders supporters had booed loudly every time Hilary Clinton's name was mentioned from the platform. They even booed when their hero, Bernie Sanders himself, tried to entreat them to support both Hilary and her centrist Vice-Presidential pick Tim Kaine.
27/07/2016 08:29 BST

Day One of the Democratic Convention

There is lot of interest in Jeremy Corbyn here. Most of the nonsensical British media coverage has not impacted on ordinary Americans and they see him as a progressive insurgent on the Sanders model with Sanders uncanny ability to enthuse idealistic young people.
26/07/2016 08:31 BST

Delaying the Fight Against Childhood Obesity Means We Risk Sleepwalking Into a Public Health Crisis

The health of children should be a priority for any Government as a moral duty, but also for the very practical reason that the savings made by cutting their care will be eclipsed by the multiplied costs of caring for them in adulthood. In the face of this crisis, the government as part of its wider budget reductions, has made its biggest cuts to local public health, which includes local health visitors, child obesity programmes and school nurses. This is not only wrong-headed, but a scandalous false economy.
22/07/2016 15:13 BST

Our Understaffed and Underfunded NHS Is a Direct Result of This Government's Ideological Attachment to Austerity

Yet for the last six years the Conservative Party had sold the myth of austerity, promising that that cutting public services would "save money", rather than simply put our poorest citizens through unnecessary misery - or worse -and chock off a sustainable economic recovery. The NHS has been biggest casualty of his this ideologically-driven slash and burn of the public sphere.
08/07/2016 15:32 BST