Bell’s Regular Newsletter – 22nd April

Apr 22, 2023 | News

Share this page


Bell’s Newsletter

22nd April 2023

Dear *|FNAME|*,

Dominic Raab’s resignation makes him the third person to resign from Rishi Sunak’s Cabinet in the space of six months and the second to do so for bullying. Like Nadhim Zahawi and Gavin Williamson before him, Sunak would have had some understanding of the allegations against Raab. Once again, his decision to appoint someone in spite of this undermines his claim to integrity, professionalism and accountability. But this is the same party and personnel who closed ranks around Boris Johnson in the wake of Partygate and around the likes of Chris Pincher. Nothing has really changed in the Tory ranks.

Community Safety Update

Picture of roped off road on Brixton Hill.

I was devastated to hear about the fatal stabbing of Filipe Oliveira in Tulse Hill over the weekend at the age of just 20 years old. His loved ones are still seeking answers. Anyone with relevant information, video or images should call the police on 101, quoting crime reference CAD 5605/15 Apr.

I was also concerned to hear about an incident on Brixton Hill on Thursday which left a young man needing medical attention. I’ll be raising this with local police leadership in our next meeting, asking them about plans to keep young people safe in our community.

I’ll keep pushing the Government to fund the interventions that get to the root causes of this violence: whether it’s reversing cuts and investing in youth services, addressing school exclusions, or a clearer focus on community policing.

Women and Equalities Committee: Black Maternal Health Inquiry

Five X More graphic of Bell

On the 17th of April, the Women and Equalities Committee published a report on black maternal health recognising and addressing how to tackle disparities in maternity care. The latest Confidential Enquiry into Maternal Deaths and Morbidity found Black women are 3.7 times, Asian women 1.8 times, and women living in deprived areas 2.5 times more likely to die in pregnancy and childbirth. This report finds the government has known about the lethal health inequalities facing Black mothers for 20 years and have failed to make meaningful progress on eliminating them. It calls for a clear, measurable, and binding target to end these disparities. If we are going to change the fact that Black women in the UK are four times more likely to die in pregnancy and childbirth, the Government must also acknowledge racism as a driving factor and start properly resourcing the solutions they have announced.

Read more about the Black Maternal Health Scandal here

30th Anniversary of Stephen Lawrence’s Murder

Bell at 30th anniversary of Stephen Lawrence's murder

On the 22nd of April 1993, teenager Stephen Lawrence was murdered in a racially motivated attack while waiting for the bus in Southeast London. The police’s investigation turned up five suspects, but none were convicted. Years later in 1998, the case was reopened after a public inquiry into his murder, which led to the publication of the Macpherson Report and changed the criminal justice system in Britain forever. Since the release of this report there have been changes to attitudes towards racism, the law, and the police. This week I joined Doreen Lawrence, Keir Starmer, and activists at a Labour event celebrating Stephen Lawrence’s life and his family’s powerful fight for justice thirty years after his murder. In their names, we’ll keep fighting to eliminate racism and discrimination.

The People We Vote for Should Want Us to Vote

Bell standing against new voter ID requirements

With the upcoming elections around the corner, it is important to get out there and vote. These are the first elections since the new mandatory voter ID requirement has been introduced. I wrote for the South London Press on the consequences of this change, whereby millions of voters potentially risk losing their voice. There are between 925,000 and 3.5 million people without valid photo ID but just 48,000 people have signed up for voter ID cards. If democracy is going to work for everybody, it must include everybody.

The Equality Act: Unfinished Business 13 Years On

Bell hosting Unite Union in parliament marking 13 years of Equality Act.

On Tuesday I was honoured to host my union Unite in Parliament to mark thirteen years of the Equality Act. I am proud to support their campaign for statutory rights for union equalities representatives to ensure they can support their colleagues’ facing inequalities and discrimination and improve workplaces. This is the “unfinished business” of the Equality Act, as unlike other union reps they have no legal right to paid holidays, and no facilities and training to support them. The next Labour Government has committed to doing this.

50 years of Fighting for Justice with the Society of Black Lawyers

Bell speaks to a large audience at the Society of Black Lawyers.

The Society of Black Lawyers is one of the oldest organisations made up of African, Asian and Caribbean lawyers in the UK. They work towards eliminating racial discrimination within the legal profession and towards equality of opportunity and access to justice. It was fantastic to host them in Parliament this week to celebrate fifty years of breaking down barriers, working to overcome racism in the legal system and fighting for justice.

Interrogating Institutional Racism in the Criminal Justice System

Bell chairs APPG on Race & Community on reimagining our justice system.

This week, I chaired an event for the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Race & Community in tandem with the Runnymede Trust on Reimagining our justice system. Black and minority ethnic groups are overrepresented at many stages throughout the criminal justice system. We spoke about how we can eliminate the ever-present racial disparities in our criminal justice system, address institutional racism, and create a system that protects and serves all people fairly and equally.

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

Keep up to date with my work by following me on social media