Harriet Harman

Member of Parliament for Camberwell and Peckham. Mother of the House of Commons

Current News

GC_Report_Mar_April_2019-page-001.jpg

Monthly report - March / April 2019

Read more

Letter_from_Transport_minister.PNG

 

Important news that Peckham Rye station to get a lift. Locally many have campaigned for years for safety & accessibility for wheelchairs, buggies, elderly, & people with restricted mobility. We need the work done soon.

Peckham Rye Station: improving accessibility

  Important news that Peckham Rye station to get a lift. Locally many have campaigned for years for safety & accessibility for wheelchairs, buggies, elderly, & people with restricted mobility....

NEW_Southwark_News_-_USE.jpg

This week we mark World Autism Awareness Week. It is thanks to vital campaigns like this led by the National Autistic Society and Cheryl Gillan MP as Chair of the APPG on Autism, that there is now a growing understanding of what the NAS describes as a lifelong developmental condition.

It is only recently there has been recognition that people on the autistic spectrum have difficulties with communication and social interaction. While we’ve come a long way with public awareness, there’s much to do to ensure that the support that there is there for people with autism and their families fully meets their needs.

We estimate 1,377 people in Camberwell and Peckham are autistic. Taking account of their families, this means autism is part of 5,508 people’s daily life.

The government cutting Southwark Council’s budget by almost half since 2010 means that they’ve had to cut the services they provide.

Parents I met at Cherry Garden and Tuke Special Schools in Peckham this month told me how they struggle as the cuts hit them. 

It takes longer for their children to get the diagnosis they need. Which means a delay in getting the necessary support - without which they and their family suffer.  One mother told me that the hours of help she gets for her 12 year old child had been cut from 24 to 16. Another mother told me she couldn’t apply for a primary school until her son’s care plan was in place, but this had been delayed so she feared he would miss out on a school place altogether or start the year without the right support. And Tuke School can no longer afford to run their invaluable after-school and summer holiday clubs that parents used to rely on.

I’m full of admiration of how these parents stoically battle for their child with autism and their other children, often struggling through complex systems without support.

Parents have got to be fully included in the key decisions about where their child goes to school and the care and support they get.

For some families care at home proves impossible. As chair of Parliament’s Human Rights Committee I’m leading an inquiry into the Assessment and Treatment Units where some autistic young people are detained. We’ve heard from parents whose children have been sent to units which far from helping them have made them worse. We’ve heard when parents raise concerns they are treated as a nuisance by services. But parents are the people with lifelong commitment to that child so we need to make sure that they can help shape the services that support their family.  We’re also shortly hearing from MPs who’ve spoken passionately of their own experience, including Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP and Jonathan Reynolds MP, who have autistic sons.

There is invaluable expertise in our schools, health and council services but we must never forget that parents are the experts and services must be properly funded.

 

 

Mark World Autism Awareness Week by properly funding support for autistic people and their families #WAAW

This week we mark World Autism Awareness Week. It is thanks to vital campaigns like this led by the National Autistic Society and Cheryl Gillan MP as Chair of the...

Thanks to the 1000+ Camberwell & Peckham people who contacted me ahead of the . 3 years on yet more uncertainty for people, businesses, NHS and security. Bleak. My votes last night, including for Customs Union, & :

EU_Indicative_votes_2.PNG

Brexit Indicative Votes

Thanks to the 1000+ Camberwell & Peckham people who contacted me ahead of the #IndicativeVotes. 3 years on yet more uncertainty for people, businesses, NHS and security. Bleak. My votes last...

Over the last 2 weeks there have been lots of important votes. I have voted:

-AGAINST the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal, which was defeated by 149 votes.

Theresa_May_deal_March_2019.png

-FOR the cross-party amendment to reject a no-deal Brexit under any circumstances. The Government voted against but we won by 4 votes.

-FOR the Official Labour Opposition amendment to extend article 50 and seek a new Brexit approach. This was lost by 16 votes.

-FOR the Hilary Benn amendment to allow MPs a series of votes on all the different options. The Government voted against this and it was defeated by 4 votes.

Read more here.

 

Key Brexit Votes

Over the last 2 weeks there have been lots of important votes. I have voted: -AGAINST the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal, which was defeated by 149 votes. -FOR the cross-party...

GC_Report_Feb_Mar_2019.pub_v7.pub-page-001.jpg

Monthly report - February/March 2019

Read more

Grosvenor_TRA_21.03.19.jpgUSE.jpg

Following a stabbing involving 2 young people in February I visited Grosvenor Tenants and Residents Association for a meeting with local T&RA Chair, Chris Lacey, Camberwell Green Ward Cllr Kieron Williams & ward police officers Charlotte and Shane to renew action on the community’s safety concerns.

Grosvenor_2_21.03.19.jpg

Grosvenor Estate Tenant & Resident Association Meeting

Following a stabbing involving 2 young people in February I visited Grosvenor Tenants and Residents Association for a meeting with local T&RA Chair, Chris Lacey, Camberwell Green Ward Cllr Kieron Williams...

SLP.png

Too often I’ve sat with grieving mothers of knife crime victims in Camberwell and Peckham. They have said goodbye to their son in the morning before school or work and they’ve never returned. 

11 people have tragically lost their lives to knife crime in Southwark since April 2018. That’s one every month. For families and communities torn apart this is not just a newspaper headline, this is their lives and it’s every mother's worst nightmare.

One mother from East Dulwich told me she is too scared to let her 11 year old son walk to and from school on his own. Another mother living in Camberwell told me that during the last school summer holidays her 14 year old son stayed in their flat alone all day everyday while she went to work, because youth centre provision had been cut back and he didn’t feel safe out alone on their estate –their home.

The urgency of this issue cannot be overstated. Since 2012 there has been a 93% rise in the number of young people stabbed. Last year 285 people in the UK lost their lives to knife crime, the highest level since records began.

All of us watching the news are outraged and mystified that after 5 people were murdered in just one week in London last week the Government has refused the Met Police’s request for extra money to tackle knife crime. The Met Commissioner, Cressida Dick, says the Prime Minister can no longer deny that cuts to police numbers have had no effect on rising crime. Under the Tories the Met has lost £1 billion and they are at full stretch. Southwark alone has lost 200 police officers and Police Community Support Officers since 2010.  

That’s why on 10th March every London Labour MP - including shadow Home Secretary, Diane Abbott; Sarah Jones, MP for Croydon Central and chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Knife Crime, and Rosena Allin-Khan the MP for Tooting who is playing a leading role on tackling knife crime in parliament and I – wrote to the Chancellor to redouble our demands that the Government give the police the resources they need to fight the rise in violent crime.

Police numbers are one important part of the picture, but the causes of this worrying rise in violence are complex and have been developing over a number of years. Cuts have hit every service, from child and adolescent mental health, to A & Es, GPs, schools and youth centres, and hampered the ability of agencies to step in when they suspect a youngster is getting involved in crime before a problem develops into a crisis.

No one single department or service can deal with this crisis.

Back in the early 2000s when there was a rise in violent street crime and robberies when Labour were in government we brought together an emergency cross-government COBRA committee and established a target for bringing this crime under control. It was run from Downing Street at the centre of government, with the Prime Minister regularly personally involved, and it worked. Within 6 months there was a 10% reduction in street robberies.

It is time for Theresa May to step up and give this crisis focus and leadership. Labour are calling for an emergency committee, backed up with the money it needs, to come out with a clear vision from all parts of government and to lay down clear actions for the police, prevention programmes, youth centres, schools, councils and mental health services.

South London is a great place to live.  But too many people are dying violent deaths.  We need leadership and more resources from government, and an end to the cuts. We can not let any more mothers go through the agony of waving their children off to school and work, not knowing whether they will return home.

 

Article published in South London Press, 14th March 2019

It’s time for the Prime Minister to take the lead on knife crime and set up a cross-government emergency response

Too often I’ve sat with grieving mothers of knife crime victims in Camberwell and Peckham. They have said goodbye to their son in the morning before school or work and...

Benn_Lecture_12.03.19.jpg

I was honoured to give the Tony Benn Memorial Lecture. Brexit has caused instability and division in bucketfuls. But Parliament has discovered it can put its foot down when the Government treats it with disrespect. Brexit has strengthened parliament - and that is now something worth fighting to retain. Read my speech here and my Politics Home article here.

 

Tony Benn Memorial Lecture 2019

I was honoured to give the Tony Benn Memorial Lecture. Brexit has caused instability and division in bucketfuls. But Parliament has discovered it can put its foot down when the...

Harris_Boys_12.03.19.png

Thanks to Executive Principal Chris Everitt and Principal Peter Groves for giving Cllr Jasmine Ali, Cabinet Member for Schools, local Cllr Jon Hartley & I a tour of the school. Good to see the Year 8 biology class learning about child birth and C-sections! I reiterated my offer to students to do work experience in my office.

 

Harris Boys’ Academy - East Dulwich

Thanks to Executive Principal Chris Everitt and Principal Peter Groves for giving Cllr Jasmine Ali, Cabinet Member for Schools, local Cllr Jon Hartley & I a tour of the school....

The Labour Party will place cookies on your computer to help us make this website better.

Please read this to review the updates about which cookies we use and what information we collect on our site.

To find out more about these cookies, see our privacy notice. Use of this site confirms your acceptance of these cookies.