The image is from Wikipedia Commons
Lewell-Buck in 2020
|Member of Parliament
for South Shields
2 May 2013
|Preceded by||David Miliband|
|Born|| (1978-11-08) 8 November 1978
South Shields, England
|Alma mater||Northumbria University
Emma Louise Lewell-Buck (born 8 November 1978) is a British Labour Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament for South Shields since winning a by-election in 2013. She is South Shields's first female MP.
Lewell-Buck attended St Joseph's Catholic Academy in Hebburn. She studied politics and media studies at Northumbria University, before gaining a master's degree in social work from Durham University.
In June 2013, she became a member of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee replacing Thomas Docherty. In October 2013, she was appointed Private Parliamentary Secretary to Ivan Lewis, Labour's Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary.
In 2014, she claimed that some people were "having to bury their relatives in their back gardens" as she proposed a Funeral Services Bill intended to require funeral providers to offer a low-cost option.
In January 2016, Lewell-Buck became shadow minister for devolution and local government in Jeremy Corbyn's frontbench reshuffle. On 29 June 2016, she announced her resignation from the post, commenting that she was "heartbroken at the state of the [Labour] Party". This was a reference to a string of shadow cabinet resignations during the summer leadership crisis. She later supported Owen Smith in the failed attempt to replace Jeremy Corbyn in the 2016 Labour Party leadership election.
In October 2016, she was re-appointed to Jeremy Corbyn's front bench team as Shadow Education Minister responsible for children and families' policy. She resigned from this position in March 2019 after voting against a second Brexit referendum in defiance of the Labour whip.
In October 2019, local party members voted to trigger a reselection contest. She vowed to fight the contest and branded those who voted against her as "bullies and tricksters". She was then successfully re-elected as MP for South Shields in the 2019 general election.
Lewell-Buck joined the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Hunger and Food Poverty chaired by Frank Field and the Bishop of Truro. The group launched an inquiry into the root causes behind hunger, food poverty and the rise in demand of food banks across the UK, and published its final report in the House of Commons on 8 December 2014. After the report Lewell-Buck said in Parliament "Food poverty is a clear consequence of the Government's ideological assault on the social safety net and the people who rely on it. One hungry person is a complete disgrace, but thousands of hungry people are a national disaster."
In November 2017 Lewell-Buck introduced a Private Members' Bill (under the Ten Minute Rule), the Food Insecurity Bill, "to require the Government to monitor and report on food insecurity and to make provision for official statistics on food insecurity." The bill was passed for second reading to be heard 2 February 2018.
During Lewell-Buck's election campaign of 2013, she said helping to bring jobs to the unemployed of South Shields was a priority. In November 2013 she organised a jobs fair in her constituency, which was repeated in November 2014 after she pledged to make it into an annual event.
Lewell-Buck is concerned about the large number of children in care; there were 75,420 children in care in England in March 2018, a rise of 4% from the year before. She said the rise was due to government cuts to support services like Sure Start, which could help children stay with their families. Lewell-Buck said, “The government is missing valuable opportunities to keep children in the care of their families. Not only does that add pressure to budgets already decimated by austerity, it also leaves children and their families with deep and enduring emotional scars.”
Employment of husband
Lewell-Buck employed her husband, Simon, as a researcher in 2015 after he had been suspended from his job as a carer and lost his place on a nursing course in response to allegations of swearing at and neglect of vulnerable adults in his care. The allegations were upheld.
However, a watchdog investigation found the local authority had made procedural errors and were asked to pay £400 in compensation to Mr Buck. An independent social worker also reviewed the evidence and found that no abuse had taken place.
Several senior members of her Constituency Labour Party members wrote to party leader Jeremy Corbyn to request her suspension owing to their concerns over his playing this role. Mr Buck was subsequently suspended from the Labour Party, pending investigation.
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- Party rivals to fight for Primrose seat at shieldsgazette.com, accessed 17 January 2019
- Pidd, Helen (3 May 2013). "South Shields' Emma Lewell-Buck vows to be 'different sort of MP". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 10 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
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- Wearmouth, Rachel (14 March 2019). "3 Shadow Ministers Resign Over Vote To Block Second Brexit Referendum". HuffPost. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
- Walker, Jonathan (8 October 2019). "MP Emma Lewell-Buck vows to fight de-selection threat and brands opponents 'bullies and tricksters'". Chronicle Live. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
- Emma Lewell-Buck, MP for South Shields (Labour) (29 November 2017). "Food Banks". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). United Kingdom: House of Commons. col. 1500–1500. Archived from the original on 25 February 2015.
- Emma Lewell-Buck, MP for South Shields (Labour) (29 November 2017). "Food Insecurity". Parliamentary Debates (Hansard). 632. United Kingdom: House of Commons. col. 363–365. Archived from the original on 14 December 2017.
- "Food Insecurity Bill 2017–19". services.parliament.uk/bills. UK Parliament. Archived from the original on 14 December 2017.
- "South Shields MP hails job fair success". Shields Gazette. 17 November 2014. Archived from the original on 19 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
- Labour blames cuts as number of children in care rises again The Guardian
- Brown, David (30 March 2018). "Shadow minister Emma Lewell-Buck gave job to husband who abused elderly". The Times. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
Emma Lewell-Buck employed Simon Buck as a researcher when he was suspended from his job as a carer and lost his place on a nursing course following the allegations of abuse.
- Jonathan Walker (24 March 2018). "Labour MP claims her husband has been targeted as council calls him 'perpetrator of elder abuse'". Evening Chronicle. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
- "Exclusive: Husband of South Shields MP branded '˜perpetrator of elder abuse' after care probe". www.shieldsgazette.com. Retrieved 4 May 2020.
- "Husband of South Shields MP suspended by Labour Party pending investigation". Shields Gazette. 19 April 2018. Retrieved 1 July 2019.
- Rowley, Tom (28 September 2013). "'I'd love to wear eyeliner, but that requires a steady hand'". ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 15 April 2020.
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