Vicky Foxcroft MP

Member of Parliament for Lewisham Deptford

Latest News

Latest News


You can find out what I have been up to in Parliament and my work in Lewisham, or read my latest blog posts below.

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On Monday 13th March Diana Johnson MP introduced a ten minute rule bill to decriminalise abortion. The bill was successfully voted through by 170 votes to 142 and will now be brought forward by a cross-party group of MPs.

A large number of constituents contacted me ahead of the bill, the vast majority of them asking me to support it but a few asking me to oppose it. I was in the Commons to vote in favour and would like to take this opportunity to explain my reasons.

In England and Wales, abortion remains a criminal act punishable by a maximum sentence of life imprisonment under the Offences Against the Persons Act 1861. The Abortion Act 1967 set out conditions under which a woman could have a legal abortion (i.e. by obtaining the signatures of two doctors and meeting specified conditions, which are much stricter after 24 weeks’ gestation) but did nothing to change the criminality of procedures which did not meet those conditions.

Evidence suggests that some vulnerable women are potentially committing a criminal offence because they are unable to access legal abortions and instead buy pills online. Practitioners are also deterred from working in the field by the threat of legal action.

I firmly agree with Ms Johnson’s proposal that abortion should be taken out of criminal law. The existing safeguards (including those mentioned above, as well as the banning of sex-selective abortion and the fact the procedure can only be carried out by licensed practitioners) can be retained by Parliament. There is no evidence from countries such as Sweden, Canada and Luxembourg which have already decriminalised abortion to suggest that this has led to an increase in late-term abortions. The UK currently has the harshest penalty of any country in Europe and it is time that this was addressed by Parliament. 

Reproductive Health (Access to Terminations) Bill

On Monday 13th March Diana Johnson MP introduced a ten minute rule bill to decriminalise abortion. The bill was successfully voted through by 170 votes to 142 and will now be...

Microbeads (tiny pieces of plastic added to some cosmetic products) have been in the news recently after a Government consultation on banning their usage closed at the end of last month. A large number of constituents have contacted me to voice their concerns.

Globally, around 8 million tonnes of plastic enter our oceans every year. This is hugely damaging to our marine animals and ecosystems: it is estimated that 90% of birds have plastic in their stomachs and serious concerns have also been raised about small plastics (such as microbeads) entering the human food chain.

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I have long supported a ban on microbeads in cosmetic products and I welcome the Government's commitment to legislate for this ban in October 2017. I know that Greenpeace has expressed concerns that the consultation did not cover all products containing microplastic ingredients, but it is worth noting that the Government has said it will gather evidence on the environmental impact of microbeads found in other products, including those for domestic use, before it considers what more can be done to tackle other plastics (such as microfibres) which affect the marine environment. I await the Government's response to the consultation.

To reduce marine litter and plastic pollution more widely, I believe that we need to rethink the way we manage resources and in particular to transform how plastics travel through our economy. The Government's commitment to ban microbeads in cosmetic products is an important first step but further action is undoubtedly still required. 

Microbeads

Microbeads (tiny pieces of plastic added to some cosmetic products) have been in the news recently after a Government consultation on banning their usage closed at the end of last...

Last month, the Government quietly dropped its obligation to the Dubs amendment – a pledge to resettle unaccompanied child refugees in the UK. Today, the Government reaffirmed its lack of commitment to refugee children by voting down a similar amendment to the Children and Social Work Bill.

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Government vote down Dubs amendment, again

Last month, the Government quietly dropped its obligation to the Dubs amendment – a pledge to resettle unaccompanied child refugees in the UK. Today, the Government reaffirmed its lack of... Read more

Next Thursday I will be speaking at a public campaign meeting in light of proposed funding cuts to schools across Lewisham. It is open to all parents, teachers and residents concerned by the impact of the Government’s planned cuts to local schools.

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Lewisham Fair Funding for All Schools campaign

Public Meeting Invite - Fair Funding for All Schools

Next Thursday I will be speaking at a public campaign meeting in light of proposed funding cuts to schools across Lewisham. It is open to all parents, teachers and residents... Read more

I have recently received emails from constituents asking me to support homelessness charity Crisis’ campaign on private renting solutions for homeless and vulnerable people. Unfortunately I was not able to attend the related Westminster Hall debate on February 8th but I have supported the work of Crisis for a long time.

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Unlock Private Renting

I have recently received emails from constituents asking me to support homelessness charity Crisis’ campaign on private renting solutions for homeless and vulnerable people. Unfortunately I was not able to... Read more

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A number of constituents have been in touch about StepChange and The Children’s Society’s campaign to create a statutory breathing space scheme for families in debt. The proposed scheme would give people a period without interest, charges or debt collection activity while they seek advice and try to improve their financial situation. 

In 2015 the Government accepted the need to conduct an in-depth review of this by the end of the year. Disappointingly, that review is still ongoing.

Personal debt can cause very serious problems. I am concerned that many young people are facing a lifetime of debt and uncertainty whilst the Government is not going far enough to protect families from falling into unmanageable debt. 

Total household debt rose to £1,834 billion at the end of September 2016. While prices are rising, earnings are still below where they were before the financial crash and many people are struggling to make ends meet. 

I hope that the Government will listen closely to the very serious concerns raised by this campaign.

Protecting Children from Debt

A number of constituents have been in touch about StepChange and The Children’s Society’s campaign to create a statutory breathing space scheme for families in debt. The proposed scheme would...

Earlier this week Save The Children held a lobby in Parliament about the need for investment in England's nurseries. Many people from the constituency came along to share their views and information. nurserylobby.jpg

The Government Needs To Invest In Our Nursery Schools

Earlier this week Save The Children held a lobby in Parliament about the need for investment in England's nurseries. Many people from the constituency came along to share their views... Read more

The Government recently announced that the Dubs scheme will end after resettling only 350 unaccompanied children.

Shameful Decision To Stop The Dubs Scheme

The Government recently announced that the Dubs scheme will end after resettling only 350 unaccompanied children. Read more

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Royal Mail’s popular Christmas Stamp Competition is returning for 2017. The competition gives primary school and home-schooled children the chance to design some of the official Christmas stamps for this year. 

Royal Mail Christmas Stamp Competition 2017

Royal Mail’s popular Christmas Stamp Competition is returning for 2017. The competition gives primary school and home-schooled children the chance to design some of the official Christmas stamps for this... Read more

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I know that many of my constituents are keen supporters of animal welfare campaigns and recently I have received a large number of emails calling for a ban on fur imports.

I welcomed the ban on fur farming in the UK and the last Labour Government’s 2006 Animal Welfare Act which put into law the most fundamental piece of animal welfare legislation for nearly a century. The act set legal minimum standards for animal welfare and tougher penalties for cruelty against animals. It also introduced a new duty of care on people to ensure the needs of any animal for which they are responsible, and made it an offence to cause unnecessary suffering to any animal.

Fur Imports

I know that many of my constituents are keen supporters of animal welfare campaigns and recently I have received a large number of emails calling for a ban on fur... Read more

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