Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP

Member of Parliament for Streatham (and parts of Balham, Clapham Common, Tulse Hill and Brixton Hill)
Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Clapham & Brixton Hill

19th January 2024

Jan 19, 2024 | News

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Bell’s Newsletter

19th January 2024

Dear *|FNAME|*,

Welcome to my first newsletter of 2024. Wishing a Happy New Year to all of you! It’s been an honour representing our home for another year. I’ve been back in Parliament these past few weeks, voting and representing our community on several important issues.

In Parliament

  • Ahead of this week’s votes on the Rwanda Bill, Tory rebels were talking a big game about taking a stand. But in the event, just 11 MPs voted against the latest effort to forge ahead with their cruel and costly deportation plan in full knowledge that it is unlawful, unworkable and unaffordable. People forced to flee their homes by conflict, violence and persecution shouldn’t face demonisation and deportation for seeking safety. They deserve our solidarity and a chance to rebuild their homes.
  • The Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill had its Second Reading scheduled for Tuesday but was delayed after the debate on the Horizon Scandal overran. This legislation, which we are told will return some time in the next couple of weeks, will change little in practice. It is a piece of political theatre designed to reiterate the Tories’ unsustainable commitment to more fossil fuel drilling. Letting companies extract yet more fossil fuels from the North Sea is not about energy security for us; it’s about energy profits for them. I signed a cross-party letter urging the government to withdraw this bill. Our focus should be making the energy we use more environmentally and financially sustainable. Instead of greenlighting new fossil fuel drilling and weakening our climate commitments, we must prioritise the construction of low-cost renewables and energy efficiency measures like insulation.
  • Labour held two Opposition Day debates last week. After it was revealed that only half of dental surgeries in South London are currently accepting new adult patients, Labour tabled a rescue plan for NHS dentistry to deliver 700,000 more urgent appointments a year. Sadly this was voted down by the Tories. The Labour frontbench also tabled a motion urging the Tories to come clean about just how much money they are wasting on their cruel and costly Rwanda scheme. Unsurprisingly, the Tories also voted this down. Instead of pursuing this vanity project, they should redirect funds towards speeding up claims, expanding safe routes and helping people rebuild their lives. 
  • The Anti-Boycott Bill returned to Parliament last week for Third Reading. This anti-democratic piece of legislation would strongarm local councils, universities, and other public bodies into doing business with companies and countries implicated in human rights abuses. Even as the bombs continue to rain down on Gaza, the government is trying to close down legitimate routes for peaceful, democratic resistance. This legislation is likely to have broader consequences too for campaigns against social injustice, climate breakdown and human rights abuses. I voted against it.

Save Clapham Common Post Office

Bell stands outside the Clapham Common Post Office with local Labour councillors, CWU members and members of the public.

It was great to join local Lambeth Labour councillors, members of the Communication Workers’ Union, and Florence Eshalomi MP to speak to local residents about the campaign to save Clapham Common Post Office. The closure of this busy branch would be a massive blow to the local community. Everybody walking past was outraged that the Post Office is considering this decision, especially in the wake of the Horizon scandal. So many Crown Post Offices are closing. It can’t be right that services suffer too as a consequence of this mismanagement.

It’s clear by the sheer number of people at last weekend’s event, and the thousands who have already signed the petition that people are worried about the impact this will have on our high streets. If needs be, the government must intervene to protect our Post Office but we can’t rely on them to do the right thing. Please sign the petition to save Clapham Common Post Office.

Sign the Petition to Save Clapham Common Post Office

Act Now to Protect Access to Abortion Services

Bell with staff inside the local MSI Choices Clinic. They stand in front of a poster that says 'Reproductive rights are human rights!'

Last year, we celebrated Parliament’s decision to introduce safe access zones to ensure women could access reproductive healthcare and abortion clinic staff could do their jobs without facing harassment from anti-choice protesters. This change is now under threat, with new draft guidance from the government seeking to overturn this decision and introduce exemptions.

As our clinic reports an escalation in anti-choice protesters, emboldened by the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe vs Wade, we cannot let the government gut these important new protections. There is no democratic basis for this. In fact, when similar changes were proposed before Parliament by DUP and Tory MPs, they were decisively voted down.

The safe access zones consultation is open until the 22nd of January. Please add your response to it as soon as possible and encourage others you know that care about this issue to do the same. Let’s work to put an end to the harassment of staff and service users at abortion clinics once and for all. The British Pregnancy Advisory Network has created a helpful explainer on how to respond.

Respond to the Consultation Now

Campaigning for a Ceasefire in Gaza

Bell addresses a crowd of pro-ceasefire demonstrators in Parliament Square, filmed by a number of video cameras.

Last weekend, I marched with hundreds of thousands of people in London as part of an international day of action to call for a ceasefire in Gaza. In 100 days of violence, more than 10,000 Palestinian children have been killed by airstrikes and ground operations. The average age of a killed child? Just five. Polling last week shows that 71% of people in Britain believe there should be an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. It’s time for our political leaders to catch up with public opinion on this and start pushing  for an end to the killing, not risking its escalation into a wider regional conflict.

Palestinian ambassador Husam Zomlot addresses MPs in a parliamentary committee room.

On Tuesday evening I attended the first of several parliamentary meetings focused on the issue of war crimes in Gaza. This was organised by my colleagues Richard Burgon MP and Imran Hussein MP. We heard evidence from Amnesty International, the International Centre of Justice for Palestinians and Palestine’s Ambassador. We cannot stand by while international law is violated in full view like this.

As ever, if you have any questions about the work I’m doing as MP, please get in touch at this address:

Best wishes,

Bell Ribeiro-Addy,
Labour MP for Streatham

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