Harriet Harman

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

Current News

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Great to join Dulwich Hill candidate Jon Hartley and Champion Hill candidate Peter John on election day. Lots of support for the Dulwich Hill Labour team - best of Luck Jon and Maggie Browning! 

Local Election Day in Dulwich Hill Ward

Great to join Dulwich Hill candidate Jon Hartley and Champion Hill candidate Peter John on election day. Lots of support for the Dulwich Hill Labour team - best of Luck Jon and...

HH_Maudsley_01.05.18_ii.jpgOn #InternationalWorkersDay2018 I met Catia & Daniela from the Maudsley Hospital cleaning and catering team, Nadine Houghton, GMB Union Southern Region Organiser, and the Managing Directors of ISS services, who employ the team at the hospital, to demand improvements in staff pay and working conditions.

The cleaning & catering team provide such an important part of the vital care mentally ill patients get at the Maudsley and it is right that the ISS management listened to their concerns about people being on different contracts for the same work, staff workloads and agreed to do all they can to be more accessible.

We will be holding a follow up meeting to get the cleaning team, the Maudsley Council of Governors and ISS managers in one room so the cleaning team can continue to raise their concerns and all parties can work together to move forward harmoniously and in a way which is fair to the hardworking cleaning and catering team.

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Maudsley cleaning & catering team deserve fair pay and conditions

On #InternationalWorkersDay2018 I met Catia & Daniela from the Maudsley Hospital cleaning and catering team, Nadine Houghton, GMB Union Southern Region Organiser, and the Managing Directors of ISS services, who employ the team at the hospital, to demand...

In my role as Chair of the Joint Committee on Human Rights, I have written to the new Home Secretary Sajid Javid MP asking him to appear before the Committee on 16 May.

One of the core fundamental human rights is the right not to be detained unlawfully. The recent Windrush scandal has raised concerns that people have been detained unlawfully. The Home Secretary needs to explain how the Home Office are ensuring rights are being respected within the immigration detention system.

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Joint Committee on Human Rights calls on new Home Secretary to answer questions on Windrush

In my role as Chair of the Joint Committee on Human Rights, I have written to the new Home Secretary Sajid Javid MP asking him to appear before the Committee on 16...

On Monday I signed a joint letter alongside more than 200 MPs calling on the Government to enshrine the rights of the 'Windrush generation' in law by statutory instrument. The Home Secretary must provide proper clarity for the 'Windrush community'. Their status remains in limbo, whilst the Government fails to act. 

Please find the full letter below:

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Joint Letter to the Home Secretary - Government must enshrine the rights of the Windrush Generation in law

On Monday I signed a joint letter alongside more than 200 MPs calling on the Government to enshrine the rights of the 'Windrush generation' in law by statutory instrument. The...

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Fantastic local support in Earlsfield this morning for candidates Jo Rigby, Graeme Henderson and Alan McDonald ahead of the local elections on May 3rd. We were joined by Sadiq Khan Mayor of London, MP for Tooting, Dr Rosena Allin Khan and terrific team of local members. 

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Fantastic local support in Earlsfield this morning for candidates Jo Rigby, Graeme Henderson and Alan McDonald ahead of the local elections on May 3rd. We were joined by Sadiq Khan...

Tabled today for answer Tuesday at latest

Questions to Home Secretary RE: Windrush Generation

Tabled today for answer Tuesday at latest

My letter to Home Secretary, Rt. Hon. Amber Rudd MP:

My letter to Home Secretary RE: Windrush Generation

My letter to Home Secretary, Rt. Hon. Amber Rudd MP:

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Today I asked an Urgent Question in the House of Commons to the Minister for Women, Victoria Atkins MP, to ask the Government to set out what action they are taking to close the gender pay gap.

You can see a full transcript of the Urgent Question here.

Full text of my response to the Minister:

Thank you, Mr Speaker, for granting this urgent question, and I thank the Minister for her obvious commitment to this issue. It was Labour legislation that enacted gender pay transparency, but it was her Government who implemented it. It is important that they did that, because it has laid bare what women have always known but previously did not have proof of, which is that there is systematic pay discrimination. It is now clear: eight out of 10 employers pay men more than they pay women—and that is across every sector, including the retail sector, which would not exist without women’s work. Why on earth should women in Tesco put up with £8 an hour on the checkout when men in the stores get up to £11.50 an hour?

Although it pains me to say this, the trade unions that need to be part of the negotiations to narrow the pay gap need to get their house in order. How can women members of Unite believe that that union will champion their rights to equal pay if there is a 30% pay gap in the union itself? The NASUWT, a teachers union, pays its male staff 40% more than it pays women, so it too has to take action. As for the public sector, let us look at the University of Liverpool. Its public policy is to narrow the pay gap, but the University of Liverpool pays men 90% more in bonuses than it pays women. That has to stop.

Does the Minister agree that we are no longer interested in rationalisations, explanations or justifications? The time for excuses has passed. We want stretching targets year on year to narrow the gap. Will she join me in congratulating the women in the House who have spoken up on this issue, such as my hon. Friend the Member for Walthamstow (Stella Creasy), among many others, including the Chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, the right hon. Member for Basingstoke (Mrs Miller), and Labour’s Front-Bench team, who have been pushing on this issue? Will she congratulate all the women outside the House who have been pushing on this, not least women in trade unions and the BBC women?

May I give the Minister some sisterly advice on what she should do to really focus on this issue? First, she should stay on the back of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and make sure that it uses all its powers and has the resources to take action. Secondly, she should suggest to the Prime Minister that she has a Cabinet session on the gender pay gap, with all Secretaries of State required to come to Cabinet and say what stretching targets they are going to impose in their Departments and the sectors for which they are responsible. Thirdly, she should commandeer Downing Street for a summit at which business and trade unions can tell her what they are going to do to narrow the pay gap. If she does all that, she will have a great opportunity and a great responsibility, because if she drives forward on narrowing the pay gap, that is not only fair and just but the most important thing to help low-income families and tackle child poverty.

We've got the figures, now we need action to close gender pay gap - UQ to Women's Minister

Today I asked an Urgent Question in the House of Commons to the Minister for Women, Victoria Atkins MP, to ask the Government to set out what action they are...

The Government's treatment of the 'Windrush Generation' who arrived in Britain from countries in the Caribbean in the 60s and 70s is unacceptable and cruel. People who have lived, worked, paid taxes and raised families in this country for decades are facing detention, deportation and the denial of medical care due to the Home Office’s Hostile Environments policy. It is appalling the Government has taken so long to act to clarify their status.

Yesterday I wrote jointly with David Lammy MP and 140 MPs to the Prime Minister urging her to take swift action to make an immediate commitment to recognise and secure the rights of Commonwealth citizens.  

Please see our letter to the Prime Minister below:

 

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Government must urgently guarantee Windrush people's status - Letter to the Prime Minister

The Government's treatment of the 'Windrush Generation' who arrived in Britain from countries in the Caribbean in the 60s and 70s is unacceptable and cruel. People who have lived, worked, paid taxes and raised families in... Read more

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The differences in pay received by men and women in television has been starkly revealed as television and production companies publish their gender pay data.

I joined a panel event this evening hosted by the Royal Television Society to discuss what the figures show, the implications for companies and the sector more broadly, and what can and should be done to narrow the gender pay gap.

The event was Chaired by Jane Martinson, Guardian columnist and journalist and we were joined by fellow speakers Jane Corbin, BBC current affairs journalist, Sian Kevill, former BBC executive and founder, Make Productions and Charlotte Sweeney OBE, Expert adviser on equality, diversity and inclusion.

Mind the Gender Pay Gap RTS Panel Event

The differences in pay received by men and women in television has been starkly revealed as television and production companies publish their gender pay data. I joined a panel event...

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