Labour MP’s maiden speech goes viral after she calls on the Commons to fight 'the indignity of poverty'

Laura Pidcock's parliamentary debut has been shared more than 213,000 times on social media

Friday 30 June 2017 07:31
Maiden speech from new Labour MP takes swipe at antiquated Parliament

A Labour MP’s maiden parliamentary speech has gone viral after she called on the House of Commons to “elevate equality” and ensure “nobody is left in the indignity of poverty”.

Laura Pidcock described her constituents as the “real wealth creators” and criticised the “archaic” systems of the Commons.

“This building is intimidating," said the 29-year-old MP for North West Durham. "It reeks of the establishment, and of power. Its systems are confusing, some may say archaic, and it was built at a time when my class and my sex would have been denied a place in it because we are deemed unworthy.

“It can be a place that elevates equality, facilitates the power of the people, esteems and properly funds a rich network of public services so that nobody is left in the indignity of poverty.”

She added that "the most most frustrating thing has been to sit opposite those people who tell me that things are better, and that suffering has lessened for my constituents."

She said: “I would like them to come and tell the people who have been sanctioned that things are better. I would like them to tell that to the teacher in my constituency who was recently made redundant. I would like them to talk to the 16,500 people in County Durham in receipt of food parcels.

“I would like them to talk to the nurses, the junior doctors and the firefighters — come and tell them that years of austerity have improved their practice or their profession.”

Ms Pidcock shared clips of her speech on social media and they have since been been viewed more than 213,000 times. Other users have also shared them more than 4,000 times.

The speech has been widely praised with Tom Miller, the Labour councillor for Wilesden Green, saying it reminded him of NHS founder, Aneurin Bevan.

"For too long we've had politicians too willing to just go along with things," he wrote on Twitter. "More of this please."

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