Thank you to those of you who have been out campaigning in all sorts of weather over the last month. It was great to join Clapham Common Labour for one of their door-knocking sessions to talk to residents about the issues that matter to them. I also enjoyed speaking to Streatham South about my busy month in Parliament.
And what a busy month. As we prepared to break for summer recess, the Government saw another opportunity to push through some truly awful legislation. The Third Reading of the Policing Bill and the Second Reading of the Nationality and Borders Bill, and Campus Free Speech Bill, brought yet more evidence that this Government is more focused on cracking down than levelling up. This month also saw the 73rd birthday of the UK’s greatest monument to socialism: our NHS. How are the Tories celebrating this? By introducing a Bill that undermines its very foundations and forces yet more disruptive reorganisation on already stretched staff and services.
It’s not just on healthcare where the Tories have been showing their true colours over the last month. Boris Johnson’s disgraceful praise of Thatcher’s attack on the miners gives us a clear idea of how his Government intends to treat workers in their right-wing vision of a greener economy. We need a just transition with retraining and support for workers, not another assault on working-class communities.
I was glad to hear the Labour leadership reiterate support for Labour’s 2019 Green New Deal manifesto commitment, which included a pledge to reduce the substantial majority of greenhouse emissions by 2030. A Green New Deal without this isn’t anything of the kind. Only rapid, radical action to wind down the fossil fuel industries and cut global emissions will ensure the long-term survival of our planet.
The recent IPCC report only confirms the urgency of this task. When global heating looks set to take temperatures above a sustainable 1.5C in little over 20 years, a 2050 net-zero target is calling the fire brigade after the house has already burned down. I’d urge members to look out for and get behind Labour for a Green New Deal’s 2021 conference motion: https://www.labourgnd.uk/conference-motion-2021
Labour for a Green New Deal—Conference Motion 2021
Conference Motion 2021 Notes: The UK faces a post-covid unemployment crisis with insecurity and low-pay rife for workers. Intensifying climate and environmental breakdown bring devastating threats to public health and livelihoods.AMM-Report-July-2021