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Live webchat with David Lammy MP on UK riots, Tuesday 24th, 1pm- 2pm

(61 Posts)
KatieMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 23-Jan-12 11:49:36

We're delighted to welcome David Lammy MP and author of 'Out of the Ashes, Britain after the riots' for a live webchat tomorrow at 1pm. As well as MP for Tottenham, David is chair of the all party group on fatherhood and was a minister in the previous government (including in health and education), serving under both Blair and Brown.

He's very keen to hear your views and answer any of your questions on how Britain can respond to the riots. He's also written a guest blog for the Mumsnet Bloggers Network in advance of the webchat.

And of course if you can't join us live, please do post a question in advance.


OP’s posts: |
purits Mon 23-Jan-12 12:48:04

A webchat on the London riots?
So the riots in the rest of the country aren't worth talking about?hmm

KatieMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 23-Jan-12 13:28:17

Hi Purits - my apologies - obviously keen to discuss the riots across the UK, and I've changed the thread title.

David's focus relates to Tottenham, where the riots started and where he's MP, but it's good to hear all questions and perspectives.

OP’s posts: |
TheBlackShiksa Mon 23-Jan-12 13:47:18

Hi David, question about your campaign against Downhills Primary becoming an academy. The school is failing- why are you campaigning against academy status? Do you think that children who come from poor areas should be condemned to sub standard education? I listened to Sancha Bergs report on your campaign and was appalled to learn that many parents, i.e. those who English was not their first language, were completely misinformed about the campaign and thought that academy status meant Downhills becoming a private school and were worried about being burdened by fees. I'd be really interested to know if your own children go to Downhills or a school in Tottenham, or a state school for that matter? Also how many children who are currently attending Downhills will be lucky enough to get a scholarship to a private school like you did given that Downhills is failing? Lastly do you think you would have gotten as far as you have without the benefit of your elite education?

Crumblemum Mon 23-Jan-12 14:14:45

I've got a question on the riots. I live in zone 3 London. Nice area, with some issues, but have always felt very safe, kids in local schools and I'm happy etc. There was some minor rioting and window breaking in our neighbourhood, and I felt very angry and protective. I wanted someone to be doing something while the rioting was taking place (not just the clean up afterwards).

I know that sounds akin to vigilantism, which obviously is not a great idea, but do you think part of the problem is that although we might all be active in our communities we're not formally involved in community groups eg church, community centres etc?

I can't really see people going back to organised community ways, so whats the answer - how do we have effective networks that don't require a full time commitment?

Happydogsaddog Mon 23-Jan-12 16:36:18

Not sure if this has been covered or even if it is relevant but what would have been the strategy if the rioting had continued or descended into complete meltdown? When Enfield Town was closed down before 3 o'clock to make for the "rioters" who had planned on congregating there, the police had running battles with them. It was akin to a schoolboy fight "Meet you in the field at 3.30" kind of thing. Had the rioters just continued with this tactic, how would they have been combatted? What is there to stop a repeat of this type of exchange happening again?

Sorry for the rant blushblush

painterlyswoosh Mon 23-Jan-12 17:10:29

What are you doing/could you be doing to change how the councils are punishing people involved in the riots?

16 months for stealing an ice cream? 4 years for inciting disorder on Facebook?

It's hard to understand where these sentences are coming from. I really worry that throwing everyone in jail who was part of a temporary group mentality will only make them even more hardened criminals - for whom stealing an ice cream would be the least of their offences.

clopper Mon 23-Jan-12 17:49:22

Do you think that rolling 24 hour news and interviewing those participating in the riots contributed to the whole thing escalating? I know that events must be reported and not hidden, but the constant attention (along with the very vocal condemnation of police tactics) seemed to make it all more dangerous for the public and possibly exciting for some of the participants. Lots of film clips were shown over and over again. Should this sort of news be restricted somehow?

MrsMicawber Mon 23-Jan-12 19:47:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

jkklpu Mon 23-Jan-12 20:39:09

Sorry, not "across the UK" at all - English riots, in fact

crazynanna Mon 23-Jan-12 20:45:53

Mr Lammy.

It was clear as the riots escalated that the reasons behind the spread of the riots were wide and varied...but do you feel,like many in Tottenham do (I live in Finsbury Park) that the initial Police response early in the first day of the unrest to the peaceful small demonstration and requests for info on the death of Mark Duggan by his family had a large part to play? Mrs Duggan found out of her son's death third hand I believe....I understand feelings in the area were running high.
In light of you think Police communication in cases like this need looking at.

TheBlackShiksa Tue 24-Jan-12 10:21:53

As chair of the all party parliamentary group on fatherhood, do you think fathers are ignored by politicians? What do you think about groups like fathers for justice? What do you think about the endemic scale of absent fathers in the Afro Caribbean community, as a prominent black MP and father what do you think can be done about this, without demonising single mothers?

mrsruffallo Tue 24-Jan-12 11:10:18

How are the local businesses getting on with rebuiding their livelihoods after these rioters trashed them? Do you think that the convicted rioters should have helped them rebuild their businesses after destroying decades of hard work?

lockitt Tue 24-Jan-12 11:24:41

There's a lot of concern on the talkboards this week with regards to the 26k benefits cap. How do you think this will affect families in Tottenham and other similar constituents? Do you think this could lead to further distrust of the current government and even more danger of disturbances in the future?

marshmallowpies Tue 24-Jan-12 11:42:04

Very cheeky and off topic but I'd love to know if he is still ashamed of his performance on Celebrity Mastermind. He didn't know who Marie Curie was or that the top row of seats in the theatre is called 'the gods'.

Or did he have one of those 'rabbit in the headlights mind goes blank' moments and actually he knew the answers?

On a serious note, I was slightly gobsmacked at seeing an elected representative of the people with such apparent gaps in their general knowledge. It didn't inspire much confidence in him, put it that way.

YouCanDoTheCube Tue 24-Jan-12 12:15:03


At the risk of making you sigh with irritation (sorry!) - can I ask what you made of the Diane Abbott/Twitter/'white people' row?

Do you feel that MPs from minority ethnic communities have to be more careful about what they say than MPs from majority communities?

PlentyOfPubeGardens Tue 24-Jan-12 12:16:09

I'd like to know why Woolwich was systematically ignored by the media during, and in the immediate aftermath of the riots even though we were really quite badly hit (we've lost buildings). I understand that there is a danger of exacerbating situations with too much media attention but it would have been good to have a little bit more than Twitter to inform us that our town centre was in flames.

It wasn't until a good couple of weeks after the riots that Woolwich incidents began to be added to the maps and lists of incidents in the media.

DavidLammyMP Tue 24-Jan-12 12:19:06


LindsayWagner Tue 24-Jan-12 12:19:15

Hello David
I know that you attribute the riots primarily to social and economic deprivation and a lack of visible opportunity for kids brought up in these circumstances. But I was interested to see that you also describe the riots as 'an explosion of hedonism and nihilism'.
I live locally and this rings true. So, how do we get back from nihilism? No measures which have been suggested - either by left or right - seem to me likely to get anywhere near it.

DavidLammyMP Tue 24-Jan-12 12:22:06

Testing (again)

LindsayWagner Tue 24-Jan-12 12:25:56

Oh (sorry, cheeky) can you explain why you aren't satisfied that the Pupil Premium will ensure fair access to free schools?

Porpoise Tue 24-Jan-12 12:43:45

Hello - and welcome to Mumsnet. My question is: What did you think of Boris Johnson's post-riots statement about the Spurs redevelopment plans? I believe he said, "'Last month's riots were a telling reminder of just how important it is for Spurs to press ahead with the development..." Is building a new football ground really the answer?

JustineMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 24-Jan-12 12:57:29

Very pleased to welcome David here to the Towers. He'll get cracking on your questions shortly.

MrsStringerBell Tue 24-Jan-12 13:00:43

Hi David - here's my question: if you could do one thing to stop the riots ever happening again, what would it be?

DavidLammyMP Tue 24-Jan-12 13:03:32


As chair of the all party parliamentary group on fatherhood, do you think fathers are ignored by politicians? What do you think about groups like fathers for justice? What do you think about the endemic scale of absent fathers in the Afro Caribbean community, as a prominent black MP and father what do you think can be done about this, without demonising single mothers?

I think there's a real problem in our society with the visibility of fathers and the lack of responsiveness of public services to fathers. This affects mothers and women who end up doing more because the health service or the nursery places the burden on them to turn up to their children's appointments, for example. 65% of black Caribbean children are being raised by a lone parent (usually mother) I don't think its about stigmatising those parents I was raised in the same circumstances but I do think that a lack of visible male role models at home, in the neighbourhood, in schools is giving some young men a very skewed sense of their masculinity which drives "gang" related behaviour in particular.

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