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WEBCHAT GUIDELINES: 1. One question per member plus one follow-up. 2. Keep your question brief. 3. Don't moan if your question doesn't get answered. 4. Do be civil/polite. 5. If one topic or question threatens to overwhelm the webchat, MNHQ will usually ask for people to stop repeating the same question or point.

MNHQ have commented on this thread

Webchat with Labour leadership contender Jess Phillips MP on Monday January 20 at 1pm

246 replies

BojanaMumsnet · 17/01/2020 09:10

Hello

We’re pleased to announce a webchat with Labour leadership contender Jess Phillips MP on Monday 20 January at 1pm.

Jess Phillips is Labour MP for Birmingham Yardley. Prior to being elected she worked for Women’s Aid, supporting victims of domestic violence. Her campaign says she is often described as the most “outspoken politician at Westminster”, having led campaigns against school cuts, immigration rights and better funding for women’s refuges.

In advance of her coming in, Jess has asked us to pass on the following: “if you share the aims and values of the Labour Party, you can have a vote on who should be Labour's next Leader if you join the Party by 5pm on Monday 20 January. You can join here and if you do it by 5pm on Monday you WILL have a vote in the contest. Find out more here.”

Please do join the chat on Monday at 1pm or if you can’t make it, leave a question here in advance.

We've invited and are hoping to have all of the contenders on over the next few weeks.

As always, please remember our webchat guidelines - one question per user, follow-ups only if there’s time and most questions have been answered, and please keep it civil. Also if one topic is dominating a thread, mods might request that people don't continue to post what's effectively the same question or point. (And we’ll suspend the accounts of anyone who continues after we've posted to ask people to stop, so please take note.) Rest assured we will ALWAYS let the guest know that it's an area of concern to multiple users and will encourage them to engage with those questions.

Many thanks,
MNHQ

Webchat with Labour leadership contender Jess Phillips MP on Monday January 20 at 1pm
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Needmoresleep · 19/01/2020 07:16

Hi Jess, do you agree with the view that culture wars and identity politics have caused a fundamental shift in the political landscape, to the extent that the previous left-wing/right-wing way of seeing things no longer holds good. If not, how do you explain the phenomenon of “blue labour” and the crumbling red wall? And as leader, how would you address the issue?

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TorchesTorches · 19/01/2020 07:39

Hi Jess, I am British and live in my husbands EU country with our kids. Whilst I have at great effort and expense, got myself citizenship of this EU country, I feel cut adrift and vulnerable (about pension rights and whether I will ever be able to live with my family in the UK.)

What is your view on the 15 year voting rule and what efforts/ rights do you think UK citizens in EU countries should retain?

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user1471519931 · 19/01/2020 07:41

Hello Jess, are there any SNP policies or legislation that you would consider bringing to rest of the UK? Thanks for your time.

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LangCleg · 19/01/2020 09:23

Hi Jess, do you agree with the view that culture wars and identity politics have caused a fundamental shift in the political landscape, to the extent that the previous left-wing/right-wing way of seeing things no longer holds good. If not, how do you explain the phenomenon of “blue labour” and the crumbling red wall? And as leader, how would you address the issue?

Just to note, MNHQ and Jess, this question has the same purpose as mine (first in the chat) so I will repeat it here so that they can be grouped together:

How do you think the Labour Party should engage with the emerging post-liberalism in British politics? Especially the traditionally Labour-voting section?

I think it's important you let us know how you intend to move forward with this, Jess, since I don't see any path to electoral win for Labour without a sensible programme of engagement here, particularly since there is plenty of common ground on economic issues, yet the membership seem intent on further alienation and the leadership candidate seem equally intent on appeasing the membership.

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Stinkyeddie · 19/01/2020 09:28

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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jasjas1973 · 19/01/2020 09:53

Hi Jess, I blame Labour and in particular Jeremy Corbyn for not only 5 more years of the Tories (probably 10) but for removing my EU citizenship, i believe he should have stepped down at least a year ago, Labours position on Brexit was a mess.

No opposition is going to win a GE when their leader has a -40pt rating!!

Am i unreasonable to hold this belief?

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Dolorabelle · 19/01/2020 10:09

Also, Jess, I'm a university academic. What do you think about the fact that students complained about my political views as expressed on Twitter, and demanded I "change my views or be sacked"?

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Gasp0deTheW0nderD0g · 19/01/2020 10:13

Hello, Jess. If elected as party leader, would you follow Neil Kinnock's example a generation ago and get rid of Momentum as he got Militant Tendency out of Labour? I don't believe a party within a party is acceptable and the influence of Momentum goes a long way to explain why so many people currently find Labour unelectable.

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Needmoresleep · 19/01/2020 10:31

Thanks Lang...another way of putting it might be "How come Dominic Cummings gets it, but no one in Labour seems to" but I doubt MN would allow that.

Smile

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YourOpinionIsNoted · 19/01/2020 11:07

Hi Jess,

Do you think politicians hoping to be elected to the highest positions in the land (pm, leader of the opposition, home secretary, etc) should be able to handle any questions that the public might wish to put to them? Or do you think it is better that they are only asked questions that they have agreed to answer? Would you have preferred Mumsnet to have left this webchat uncensored or are you pleased they have censored it on your behalf?

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crankysaurus · 19/01/2020 12:05

Hello Jess,
How would you manage the need for rapid reduction in carbon emissions with opposition from the trade unions?

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Coppersulphate · 19/01/2020 12:10

Hello Jess,
Please can you clarify whether or not you have a post graduate qualification. Your web page says you have a post graduate diploma but have you? Did you not leave after year 1?

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Jux · 19/01/2020 13:48

How would you improve public transport in the south west? We have very little and what there is is unreliable and very expensiive for what it is. We all know about Dawlish but there are many many more problems than a few holiday makers not being able to get through to Cornwall or take the scenic train route.

Diverting money from HS2 to fix local issues all over the country would be money well spent. Do you think that allowing HS2 to continue to swallow funds is just throwing good money after bad to pay for a vanity project? Are you familiar with the psychology of sunk cost?

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PoliticalBiscuit · 19/01/2020 15:40

What's your favourite biscuit?

Not a Mumsnet chat till this question is asked!

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corpsebrid3 · 19/01/2020 15:41

Hi Jess,

I've been concerned that RLB wants to talk to catholic priests about the abortion laws in particular there not be a limit on abortion limits on pregnancy with defects. These cases are rarely related to contraception errors and are often very wanted pregnancies but it's not viable for mother or child to continue.

Indeed this happened to me and many other women here and I made a very difficult decision based on my ability to cope and the long term prognosis of my baby. I would want my daughter to also be afforded this choice over her body and life, god forbid, she ever be put in the same position.

What are your views on:

A) consulting religious leaders on issues that affect non religious women?

B) your thoughts on pressure to change abortion laws?

Thanks

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HermioneWeasley · 19/01/2020 16:47

The “favourite biscuit” question has already been asked, so I assume MNHQ will delete that immediately @PoliticalBiscuit

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SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius · 19/01/2020 17:01

Hello Jess. I was raised by passionate Labour-supporting parents, and because of this, I believe in the principles of socialism - equality of opportunity in education and healthcare, for example, the need for a benefits safety net to support the most vulnerable and needy in society, and the role of the unions in supporting workers’ rights.

However, I am a centrist by inclination, and as such, the way that the Labour Party has moved hard Left under Jeremy Corbyn and the influence of Momentum has left me feeling that the Labour Party is no longer a place for me. It does not seem to care about the views of the centre Left, nor does it realise that, if it wishes to win elections, it must appeal to a broad church, particularly the centre left like myself.

What will you do to ensure that Labour becomes a party that welcomes all shades of opinion from the centre to the left, includes and respects them all, and is capable of winning their votes?

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jewel1968 · 19/01/2020 17:34

Would you describe yourself as a socialist and what are your views on socialism generally?

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womanaf · 19/01/2020 17:43

I find the politicalbiscuit question really off-putting, like I’m not allowed to post a question if I don’t have the same biscuity concerns as other posters.

I also worry the politicalbiscuit question will put off politicians from doing future web chats if they’re seen to be promoting an unhealthy lifestyle.

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ArabellaPilkington · 19/01/2020 17:46

Hi Jess

I'll be voting for you when the ballot opens.

How can you encourage more women to be involved in politics and what are your views on the current population in the house?

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HeIenaDove · 19/01/2020 18:52

What can be done to change the negative narrative towards and about social housing tenants. Some of which has come about due to the residulisation of the sector. These attitudes are also coming from within the sector itself.

Why is there such a reluctance to place housing associations under the FOI.

What is going to be done about SH tenants being forced to have unskilled contractors in their homes Which is STILL happening post Grenfell.

In the run up to the 2015 general election Labour had a housing petition running. But this only included private tenants. Why?


If these pervasive attitudes continue another Grenfell is only a matter of time!

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0hforfoxsake · 19/01/2020 18:54

I left labour, and was very tempted to return when I read the Manifesto, particularly the statement that Labour will protect women’s rights.

But I’m not convinced yet.

Why should I rejoin, and why should I vote for you as Leader?

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Cismyfatarse1 · 19/01/2020 19:57

Hello, Jess. If a man wins a Labour leadership contest against four women will the Labour Party finally concede the misogyny at its dark heart?

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hazeyjane · 19/01/2020 20:33

Hello Jess
I am sorry, my post is long, but my question is brief.
It is long because I am tired and I am quite frankly broken.
My question is "Will you listen to us?"

I have a son with complex needs as a result of a genetic condition and I work as an early years practitioner, mainly with children with additional needs.

It feels as though the last few years has seen an already imperfect system crumbling further, leaving families like mine and those I work with having to fight for support in education and healthcare, for their vulnerable children. These are not parents who are fighting from a position of relative strength, but from a foundation of the exhaustion and fear that often comes with having a child with additional needs, often not able to work full time and whilst trying to ensure their other children are safe and happy.

There is a lack of suitable provision for many, many children like mine and those I work with. Educationally, their needs cannot be fully met in a mainstream education system that claims to promote a model of inclusion, but is unable to - in part due to funding, but also because of an educational culture driven by targets. It is also, and this is something that I don't think was foreseen or even considered when special school closures through a policy of inclusion took place, not an environment that is suited for many children with complex needs which may include.... physical health needs, behavioural difficulties, sensory issues, communication needs, mental and emotional health needs and learning needs which may be average in some areas and delayed in others....often all in one complex and vulnerable child.

Navigating a way through a mainstream system for the child and parents can be a bewildering journey, often resulting in anxiety and school refusal in the child. Parents struggling to work in partnership with schools, who let's face it, have a lot on their plates can often be seen as 'that parent', yet another problem laid at the door of schools and teachers.

My son is in a resource base in a mainstream school - a 'solution' that is often put forward as a bridge between specialist provision and mainstream...in reality I dont believe it is working. Resource bases are often over subscribed with children due to the lack of special school places, staff often don't have enough training, children who struggle with change are expected to endure many changes throughout their school week and day and the culture of the mainstream school management determines the ethos of the resource base.

Within mainstream, TAs are heavily relied on as support for a child who can then become more and more isolated in a class as they, understandably, rely heavily on the adult there to support them. A 1-1 is seen as an all healing balm that will magically provide all the support a complex child needs. They Are Not.

Can you send him to special school?"
It often comes up on threads on mumsnet, and is said by pretty much everyone who we speak to in real life...
Where?
Where are the special schools?
Even where special schools are being expanded (our area is one...yay) they are largely for children with specific needs or for children who have a higher level of learning disability.

Alongside the slow mo car crash of education is a healthcare system that we rely on heavily. In our area, half of this is under Virgincare - long appointment waits, poor communication, being discharged from services we need, equipment and services no longer provided....what services we still get from the NHS are struggling and we have been in some terrifying and frustrating situations in A+E and other services.

It is, in all honesty, a shit show and I am tired and weary of what feels like a constant battle to deal with the simple act of taking my child to school and feeling like he is safe and well supported (I have 2 children in another school with no additional needs and it is like living with a foot on 2 different planets)...and the less simple act of making sure he has joined up healthcare that keeps him well.

I want to know how children like mine, and the families who fight on their behalf, will be helped if Labour get into power with you at the helm, Jess? I ask from a position of relative strength - I have family support, a husband who cares, I can understand the system, write letters, speak up in endless bloody meetings...but I work with families who often do not have these things.

We need more specialist provision across the board.
We need a support system that works in partnership with families
We need a joined up properly funded NHS, with an end to contracting out children's services and social care.
We need someone who will listen to us. Will you listen to us? Please.

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Tellingitlikeitisnt · 19/01/2020 20:34

Hi Jess thanks for coming on. Very brave Grin

As someone who has worked as a medic in the NHS for 25 years and is completely demoralised by what I see day in and day out, please tell me where the hell we start in fixing it?
It isn’t just cash it needs is it?

Do you honestly think the NHS is mendable and if so how and how would you persuade those within it to believe that too?

Feel free to pop into Heartlands or the QE and witness the mess yourself anytime up close.

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