Lyn Brown lays into David Cameron at West Ham campaign launch
PUBLISHED: 10:00 10 April 2015
Lyn Brown fired off Labour’s general election campaign in east London with a scathing attack on David Cameron over the growing numbers of families made homeless and dependant on foodbanks as a result of the government’s welfare reforms.
The former West Ham MP pointed out that food banks were now being used by a million people.
She claimed the Prime Minister had failed to acknowledge that the so-called bedroom tax, delays in benefit payments, the explosion of zero hours contract and a fall in wages against rising rents had contributed to the growing figure.
“He put it down to foodbanks being advertised in jobcentres,” she scorned. “The man is absolutely shameless.”
Ms Brown claimed street homelessness had shot up by 55 per cent since 2010 with more people having to sleep rough, pledging a Labour government would “build 2,000 new homes a year by 2020” and get a better deal for renters.
The former Newham councillor rose to be a minister in the last Labour government and was now calling for more powers for local authorities to enforce the minimum wage on employers.
But in 2011 she was accused by Intern Aware campaigners of recruiting an unpaid intern while supporting a living wage for all. She insisted at the time that she didn’t have the resources to pay everyone in her office.
Her prediction for May 7 was that it “won’t be easy — it’s going to be nasty and dirty, right down to the wire”.
The Labour rally was held at the People’s Palace, Mile End, on Thursday last week.
It was chaired by former Poplar and Limehouse Jim Fitzpatrick, with Lyn joining former Bethnal Green and Bow MP Rushanara Ali on stage to launch her campaign for re-election.
The grandees of Labour turned up in support of the two women battling to get back into Parliament, led by Labour’s former national leader Lord Kinnock alongside former health secretary Frank Dobson.
Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, Margaret Hodge, also attended alongside Baroness King and London Assembly member for City and East John Biggs.
The People’s Palace was chosen for its historic social significance for the Labour movement, where Clement Atlee, a former Mayor of Stepney, learned he had won the 1945 general election in a landslide against Winston Churchill.
Now the party faithful were being rallied to “go out and win” at the polls on May 7.
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