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Wow. What a result. I’m so honoured to have been re-elected to represent Lewisham Deptford, my home for the last 17 years. And I’m humbled to have received an increased majority of 34,899 votes.

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I want to say thank you to the volunteers, organisers, my team and above all, everyone who voted for me - your voice was heard loud and clear. We are a proud, strong Labour area and we will not be deceived or directed into voting for Tory polices that will only be detrimental to our community.

Estimates reckon the turnout among young people could have been as high as 72%, compared to 43% in 2010 and 44% in 2015. During my two years in Parliament I have tried to focus on issues that affect young people, from youth violence and education funding to reducing the voting age, so to see so many young people engaged is incredible. The future of this country is being heard and represented.

Many young voters backed Labour because they know only the Labour Party will secure their future through investing properly in our education system and our housing, securing extra jobs (including jobs that tackle climate change), fighting to protect our NHS, fighting austerity and creating a transport system that truly delivers for the travelling public.

So now I promise to keep up my end of the bargain by continuing to raise local issues and being your voice in Parliament - a Parliament that I hope won’t be a Tory one for too much longer…

Thank you

Wow. What a result. I’m so honoured to have been re-elected to represent Lewisham Deptford, my home for the last 17 years. And I’m humbled to have received an increased...

Tomorrow (June 8th) is polling day. Here are 5 important things to remember:

  1. You don't need your polling card to vote.
  2. Polls are open 7.00am-10.00pm.
  3. If you've got a postal vote but haven't sent it back yet, you can take it to any polling station in the borough before 10.00pm.
  4. If you don't know where your polling station is, call our campaign hotline on 07789 202863.
  5. Place an 'X' next to the Labour candidate to vote Labour.

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Polling Day - Thursday 8th June

Tomorrow (June 8th) is polling day. Here are 5 important things to remember: You don't need your polling card to vote. Polls are open 7.00am-10.00pm. If you've got a postal...

Although there is now only a day and a half to go until the polls open, I am still receiving a large number of emails from local people asking my views on various policy issues. I have tried to reply to as many as possible, but unfortunately I will not have time to respond to all of them before Thursday.

If you would like to know my position on an issue, the best place to check is our Labour Party manifesto. You can view the manifesto in full here.

Thank you for your understanding.

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Labour Party Manifesto

Although there is now only a day and a half to go until the polls open, I am still receiving a large number of emails from local people asking my...

I've been receiving emails from lots of people asking for reassurance that if re-elected on June 8th I will continue to oppose the reintroduction of fox hunting, as well as committing to increasing sentences for those convicted of animal cruelty offences.

I am proud that previous Labour governments brought in the Hunting Act (2004) and the Animal Welfare Act (2006) and if I am re-elected I am committed to defending both. We have also pledged in our manifesto to increase the maximum sentence for those convicted of committing animal cruelty.

You can read more about our specific manifesto commitments on animal welfare here (p. 94).

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Fox Hunting & Animal Welfare

I've been receiving emails from lots of people asking for reassurance that if re-elected on June 8th I will continue to oppose the reintroduction of fox hunting, as well as...

Thank you to everyone who has emailed asking me to sign the Refugee Council's 'Refugees Welcome' pledge. I am happy to confirm that I have added my name.

If I am re-elected on June 8th, I will continue to push for the UK to do more to help refugees. I have previously written to ministers about this issue several times and have raised it in Parliament as well. I was extremely disappointed earlier this year when the Government chose to quietly scrap their commitment to child refugees via a written ministerial statement, and then voted down a watered down version of the Dubs amendment in March.
 
As a Labour Whip I worked hard in attempting to get these amendments through, but unfortunately we lost the second vote by 287-267. The result was bitterly disappointing - we were expecting more Tory rebels to vote with us, but in the end only three Conservative MPs decided to vote for the Dubs amendment.

I can assure you that I will continue to push for the UK to do more to help refugees if I am re-elected next month.  

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Refugees Welcome Pledge

Thank you to everyone who has emailed asking me to sign the Refugee Council's 'Refugees Welcome' pledge. I am happy to confirm that I have added my name.If I am...

A good education shouldn’t discriminate, but under a Tory Government it does. On Friday I supported the Fair Funding for All Schools picnic in Ladywell, as part of a National Day of Action against education cuts.

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In some areas of Lewisham Deptford it’s predicted that over 40% of children are living in poverty. If a child comes from one of these deprived parts of Lewisham Deptford their best chance of success is likely to be from a good education.

But the whole system is currently in danger of failing our young people, starting with early years. Outstanding nursery schools in Lewisham Deptford are struggling to see a future because of Tory cuts. Primary schools are also in trouble, facing cuts of around £4,957,847 by 2020. Then secondary schools will see a loss of £717 per pupil by 2020 - all under a Tory government.

It doesn’t stop there. Both further and higher education have been hugely damaged, with £1bn cut from the adult skills budget since 2010, the trebling of university fees and university maintenance grants scrapped.

The whole system is under threat and it cannot continue.

Labour can make the education system work for everyone and will immediately halt Tory cuts to school budgets. We will and reduce class sizes for all under-8, give all primary school children free school meals and roll out education provision for early years children as part of a National Education Service. We will reintroduce EMA, bring back maintenance grants and abolish tuition fees.

We will give everyone fair access to a high quality education, because education is the lifeblood to innovation and a working economy. If the system was working it would give people opportunities, unlock potential and drive social change.

Fair Funding for All Schools

A good education shouldn’t discriminate, but under a Tory Government it does. On Friday I supported the Fair Funding for All Schools picnic in Ladywell, as part of a National...

The Tories have made significant and unjustifiable cuts to our vital public services, and deny many are on the verge of collapse because of underfunding.

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We should be so proud of our public services however, over the years we have watched them dwindle under Tory austerity – and with the Tories downgrading of the state we have seen the growth of the private sector.

There are so many examples of shrinking public services; policing has seen a loss of 20,000 officers under the Tories – yet crime is rising and we’ve just seen one of the worst spates of stabbings across London.

We all know the NHS is in crisis, being starved of funding and we’ve also seen the fire service lose 10,000 firefighter jobs. But it’s also valued jobs that aren’t spoken about loudly, health visitors providing fundamental care to young children and their parents, crown post office employees, train guards and community support officers.

So many services in the public sector have become frighteningly vulnerable under a Tory government and it simply cannot continue, but it doesn’t stop there, Tories have plans to bring spending down even further. 

Labour believe in a fairer system, where our essential services are properly funded and protected. To do this, we would not ask ordinary households to pay more, instead we would crack down on tax avoidance through our Tax Transparency and Enforcement Programme. Increase corporation tax to 26 per cent, while still keeping it among the lowest of the major developed economies, raising £19.4bn a year.

Under Labour only the top 5% of earners will be asked to contribute more in tax to help raise £6bn a year to fund our public services.

These services are structure of our country, without them our communities would be so much poorer, we need to rescue them and reinvest in them. 

Why we must stand up for our public services

The Tories have made significant and unjustifiable cuts to our vital public services, and deny many are on the verge of collapse because of underfunding.  

Last week I took the train from Lewisham to London Bridge with Sadiq Khan, our Labour Mayor of London, and Clive Efford, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Eltham. We travelled together in the morning rush hour and spoke to commuters about their concerns with transport in London. The same complaints were raised that are raised with me all the time. Our trains are overcrowded, constantly delayed and we pay through the nose for a service which is poor and unreliable.

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Labour has pledged to renationalise the railways - the only viable long-term plan that puts passengers first. In London that means we will hand control of all suburban rail lines over to Transport for London - something Sadiq Khan has been calling for since his election last May, but which the Tories have blocked. A TfL takeover would mean frozen fares, safer stations and a much more reliable service, putting the public first - not the profits of rail providers.

In the meantime, I am pushing for a better service for Lewisham Deptford by keeping the pressure on rail providers in the South East. I've been encouraging residents to contribute to the Department for Transport consultation on the future of the South East franchise, as some of the current proposals are set to disadvantage us locally in Lewisham Deptford. You can find out more by reading my full response to the consultation here.

Make sure you have your say too, as the consultation closes on the 23rd May. You can read the full consultation document here and you can respond online here.

Campaigning alongside Sadiq Khan for better rail services in Lewisham Deptford

Last week I took the train from Lewisham to London Bridge with Sadiq Khan, our Labour Mayor of London, and Clive Efford, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Eltham. We travelled together...

For the last two years I have worked hard to represent the people of Lewisham Deptford in Parliament.

Since being elected in 2015 I have dealt with over 7,500 pieces of casework from constituents, covering a wide range of issues from housing problems and immigration issues to street repairs and planning concerns.

I have always tried to be as accessible as possible. I have a shopfront office on the Tanners Hill estate and my door is open to any constituent who has a concern. Lewisham Deptford has been my home for over fifteen years and I care passionately about the issues affecting local residents.

I have also been working to re-establish Deptford First, a charity which supports local people who have nowhere else to turn through the provision of small grants.

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Vicky in Lewisham Deptford

For the last two years I have worked hard to represent the people of Lewisham Deptford in Parliament. Since being elected in 2015 I have dealt with over 7,500 pieces...

Hundreds of Lewisham Deptford residents have contacted me over the last two years to ask for help with housing issues. Many are stuck in unsuitable or overcrowded social housing and the sad fact is that only those in the most acute need are likely to be moved. Others are frustrated that they are unable to afford sky-high London rents on a low income.

After seven years in power, the Tories’ record on housing is failing on all fronts. Home-ownership has fallen sharply, rough sleeping has more than doubled, private rents have risen faster than incomes and affordable house building in 2016 was at its lowest level for 24 years.

If Labour is elected on June 8th, we will take bold action to tackle the housing crisis. We will build at least a million new homes by 2022, including 100,000 affordable council and housing association homes a year to rent and buy.

We will also seek to end insecurity for private renters by introducing a new charter of renters’ rights. We will guarantee new legal standards to ensure that all homes are fit for human habitation and give councils new powers to license landlords.

From 1997-2010 successive Labour governments built almost 2 million new homes and cut homelessness by 62%. I hope that voters will give us a chance to build on that success over the next five years.

 

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Tackling the Housing Crisis

Hundreds of Lewisham Deptford residents have contacted me over the last two years to ask for help with housing issues. Many are stuck in unsuitable or overcrowded social housing and the...

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