Black lives matter. George Floyd’s death at the hands of officer Derek Chauvin was a horrifying incident, and my heart goes out to his family, friends, and to everyone who is grieving at this time. When people are having their human rights violated, we cannot stay silent.
The right to protest too, is a human right, and it must be protected. Yesterday's Black Lives Matter march through Birmingham set a powerful example of how people can make their voices heard, safely. It was loud, it was passionate, but there was no disorder and no arrests. The conduct of protestors and police alike deserve the highest praise.
I recognise that the disproportionate economic and social oppression of black people and other ethnic minorities is not only the preserve of the US. The UK has much to face up to, on racial profiling, Windrush, hate crime, the organised far right, and perhaps most urgently, Covid-19. And I have been calling for an impact assessment on this for some time.
After repeated calls, the government finally released Public Health England's review into the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on BAME communities this week. The review confirms what we already knew - that racial and health inequalities amplify the risks of Covid-19. But the review failed to mention any recommendations to reduce these disparities. That's why Labour has called on the government's Race Disparity Unit to publish its recommedations without delay, before any more lives are lost.
This week also saw the public's trust in the government collapse. Is it any wonder when the Prime Minister broke his promise to get a 'world-beating' test, track and trace system in place by June 1st, the government's use of statistics has been roundly criticised by the UK Statistics Authority as being misleading and falling "well short of expectations", and the Prime Minister continues to show weakness and undermine faith in public health messaging by choosing not to sack Dominic Cummings.
As Keir Starmer said at PMQs on Wednesday, it is vital that the Prime Minister gets a grip of this crisis to restore public confidence at this critical phase in our fight against coronavirus.
Have your say...
Covid-19 impact survey
Birmingham City Council wants to hear from you about the impact that lockdown measures have had on various aspects of your health and wellbeing, mental health, physical activity, employment and relationships.
Birmingham City Council has been busy keeping services going during this crisis, but they want to hear from you about how they can continue to support and protect residents during this difficult time. You can have your say by clicking the button below.
Coronavirus is the biggest crisis our country has faced in a generation. It is a health crisis, an economic crisis and – for many – a personal crisis. Our immediate attention must be on responding to the pandemic and ensuring the health and safety of people across the country.
But we also need action to combat the economic crisis that is facing so many communities across our country while ensuring that we take bold and ambitious steps to tackle the climate crisis.
Until the end of June the Labour Party will be asking detailed questions about what this programme should look like. The impact of coronavirus will be felt sharply over the coming months and we need to be ready to present our plans to government.
Why not take a moment to send in your thoughts about what a green recovery could look like today, on World Environment Day.
Yesterday, was the UK government's turn to host the Global Vaccine Summit, where countries come together, this time virtually, to pledge money for Gavi, the vaccination alliance promoting vaccinations among the world's poorest communities. This year, the event also looked at creating a global mechanism to ensure equitable access to any future Covid-19 vaccines.
The UK had an opportunity to take a leading, global role to protect and save lives in the UK and around the world at yesterday's Global Vaccine Summit. That's why, ahead of the summit, I called on the government to attach conditions on UK public money to guarantee equitable access to any Covid-19 vaccine.
You can read my letter in full by clicking the button below.
My priorities as Labour’s new Shadow International Development Secretary
As Labour's new Shadow International Development Secretary, I took the opportunity to set out my priorities for the role in a piece for LabourList. In my article I touch on the coronavirus crisis, the importance of UK aid, universal healthcare, debt cancellation for countries in the global south, equitable access to Covid-19 medical tools, calls for a global ceasefire, gender equality and much more.
Join me for an upcoming online event, ‘LabourList in conversation with Preet Kaur Gill’ on Thursday, June 18th, at 6pm, where I will talk through my priorities with LabourList's Sienna Rodgers and answer your questions.
You can read my article and find out more about the event by clicking the button below.