Wandsworth Labour are freezing council tax for another year to help families through the cost-of-living crisis.
At the same time, we're improving services and building a better Wandsworth.
My South London Press column is out today! As it was Valentine's Day this week, I wrote a love letter to my local area.
Across Balham, Earlsfield, Furzedown and Tooting, there is such an amazing range of people and culture locally.
Read my article here👇
Wandsworth is bursting with creativity and culture. Our art, food and history are what makes our community such a great place to live.
Today, Fleur Anderson, MP for Putney, and Marsha de Cordova, MP for Battersea, and I have written to Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to support Wandsworth’s bid to be London Borough of Culture 2025.
As the MP for Tooting, the safety of our community is my top priority. I am delighted that more than 100 local businesses have already signed up to become a Safe Space.
For more details, head to the Safe Space here
It was wonderful to attend the Furzedown Project Christmas Party with a great carol performance from local children from Penwortham Primary School. Truly brilliant to see the community come together ahead of Christmas.
One of the most important jobs I do as your local Member of Parliament is ensuring that our wonderful communities in Balham, Earlsfield, Furzedown, Tooting and Wandsworth Common remain safe and welcoming places to live.
To this end, I have recently hosted public meetings with local police leadership in Balham and Furzedown, conducted a walkaround with the Borough Superintendent around the local area, and written to the police on behalf of local residents on a wide range of issues.
Please do let me know if you have any concerns regarding crime issues in the local area - my door is always open.
It was great to bring together local charities, faith leaders, and leader of Wandsworth Council, Simon Hogg who are all working tirelessly to support local families through the cost-of-living crisis.
I have already been contacted by countless Tooting residents who are concerned about how they are going to pay their bills and put food on the table this winter, and I fear this will only get worse as we move further into the winter months. With so many households already feeling the squeeze, it’s crucial that we work together to tackle poverty.
Representatives from Earlsfield and Wandsworth foodbanks as well as Dons Local Action Group and Little Village Tooting told me that they are seeing unprecedented demand at present, as more and more of those who were just-about-managing become unable to afford the basics.
All the organisations represented spoke of the added difficulties the rise in energy prices have brought. The hike in energy prices has meant that even the local charities who are there to address the crisis are struggling to pay their bills, and this means they are less able to help those in need. This comes at the worst possible time, when demand is at it’s highest level for decades.
Everyone at the event had numerous stories of people facing hardship, people in overcrowded accommodation, people not being able to put food on the table or buy school uniforms for their children. Many people are also concerned about how they will meet the additional cost of christmas.
Despite heartbreaking stories, it was uplifting to see so many people who donate their time, energy and money into making things better for people in our community. I am always amazed by the generosity of people in Tooting. However, in Britain in 2022 these organisations and charitable schemes shouldn’t have to exist. It is imperative that the Government take action immediately to support people through the months ahead.
I was deeply concerned to hear pupils at Graveney School in Tooting were being targeted in a recent spate of muggings. I have been in touch with local police leadership to insist on swift action to address this issue. I know that the police are actively working to identify and arrest those responsible.
Every child deserves to walk our streets without fear. I am therefore pleased to hear that the local police force are carrying out high visibility patrols and are carrying out regular weapon sweeps around the school.
Police are also patrolling the area in unmarked cars to try and identify and arrest the suspects.
Pupils at Graveney School have also received assemblies on how to keep safe and how to report a street crime. The local police have also liaised with local CCTV to ensure appropriate coverage.
It is vital that all of these issues are reported to the police so they can bring these worrying incidents to an end as quickly as possible. Anyone who has been a victim of a street robbery in this area who is yet to report the incident to the police are advised to do so.
Please be assured, I will continue to work with our local police team to resolve this issue as quickly as possible, and I will continue to follow this case as a matter of urgency.
It is an honour to have been unanimously re-selected by all the local party branches and affiliated organisations to stand as Labour’s candidate for Tooting in the next general election.
I want to say a huge thank you to all the members and affiliates who took part, and who continue to put their trust in me to represent our community.
Serving as the Member of Parliament for the community I grew up in is an honour. From helping local residents with casework, playing a part in winning the council, defending our NHS and serving as the shadow Minister to Mental Health - I have the best job in the world. My job is made even greater by the fantastic support local members show me all year round, so I want to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to them all!
The next election is make-or-break for our party, we simply must win. I’m looking forward to working hard to make this happen.
The NHS is being dismantled, I see it every time I work a shift. More people than ever are relying on foodbanks, and the cost-of-living crisis is having a devastating impact on people locally and across the country. I will be absolutely committed to doing everything I can to put Labour into Government and make the changes this country so desperately needs.
Thank you again to everyone who voted.
It was great to visit Mount Carmel Rehabilitation centre again recently. I’ve enjoyed working with this fantastic organisation over the last few years.
Mount Carmel offers residential and day programmes to people struggling with addictions. Their Counsellors provide a series of programmes, including a range of talking therapy groups, art therapy and equine therapy, to help people overcome their addiction issues.
The pandemic has left Mount Carmel more stretched than ever, with many people seeking help after relapsing or struggling with new addiction problems during the lockdowns. Despite the increased demand, the team at Mount Carmel continue to provide first class care to all their clients.
I look forward to continuing to work with the team at Mount Carmel, and seeing all that they go on to achieve.
If you would like to support the work they do in our community, you can donate to their Just Giving page below