Lynne Featherstone MP discusses comm-unity with local Turkish women

Lynne Featherstone MP speaks with local Turkish women in Wood GreenOn Saturday Lynne Featherstone visited over 50 local Turkish women, to speak about recent international events – such as the Charlie Hebdo attacks – and the effect these events have had on local communities.

The visit forms part of Lynne Featherstone’s campaign to encourage unity, and search for solutions to both extremism and intolerance in Haringey and beyond.

The local MP listened to the women, some of whom have faced threats and even violence following the actions of extremists in other countries. They then discussed possible ways to prevent radicalisation, to protect vulnerable communities, and also to prevent division in response to extremist actions.

Turhan Ozen, the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary candidate for Tottenham, was also present at the event, and joined in the discussion.

Lynne Featherstone MP commented:

“Following the recent actions of extremists in other countries, some local women have had letters through their own doors telling them to ‘go home’ – and worse.

“This is not fair – these women have done nothing wrong – yet some now feel afraid. I have taken on board many of the points they raised, about how politicians and Government can better protect vulnerable communities.

“Now more than ever, it’s important that we unite as a community. We have such a proud tradition of this in Haringey – of embracing diversity and uniting against both extremism and intolerance.

“While other parties are trying to capitalise on the politics of fear, the Lib Dems believe that unity and tolerance is the only way to stand up to extremism – and I am working hard to get this message out both locally and nationally.”

85% of survey respondents think Haringey Labour’s immigration leaflet is ‘unacceptable’

Labour's disgraceful anti immigration leaflet - delivered in Hornsey and Wood GreenLynne Featherstone, MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, has called on Haringey Labour to stop delivering their inflammatory and controversial leaflet, which outlines the Labour Party’s ‘tough new approach to immigration.’

The leaflet, which has been widely criticised by local residents and commentators on social media, was delivered only to areas of the borough with relatively more diverse populations – Bounds Green, Wood Green, and parts of Tottenham.

The Liberal Democrat MP’s call has been backed by residents in Hornsey and Wood Green. A survey last week, which received over 400 responses, revealed that 85% of local residents also believe that Labour’s leaflet is unacceptable.

Lynne Featherstone, Liberal Democrat MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, commented:

“Here in Haringey, we have a proud tradition of uniting against extremism and the politics of fear. But instead of upholding this – Labour are pandering to UKIP and creating division. It’s no surprise that the vast majority of people here think this leaflet is unacceptable.

“To top it off – Labour have specifically targeted this leaflet towards more diverse areas like Tottenham, Bounds Green and Wood Green. Other parts of Haringey – like Crouch End and Muswell Hill – have not been informed about Labour’s new, regressive immigration policies.

“I hope the local Labour Party will respond to the calls from local residents, and not distribute divisive literature like this again in any part of our borough.”

While others seek division, we're searching for solutions to extremism and the politics of fear

Here’s my latest Ham and High column – also available here

It seems like every time we watch the news, we hear about another conflict or incident. And the awful terrorist attacks in Paris were so close to home.

The whole world felt the impact of the horror that unfolded at the Charlie Hebdo office.

But here in Haringey we have a proud history of uniting against violence, hate, and extremism.

Less than two years ago, the community response to the terrible attacks on the Somali Bravenese Centre was overwhelming. We all came together in a show of solidarity – and helped them to rebuild.

Unity is the best way to respond to the atrocities committed by terrorists, and extremism. It’s so important that we don’t allow the politics of fear and hate to creep in.

To be blunt, those seeking to create division are parties like Ukip, who would use the actions of terrorists to create fear and animosity towards certain communities.

I’m proud that my party, the Liberal Democrats, have stood up to Ukip from day one. Our beliefs and values really are the polar opposite of theirs!

But I know it’s not enough to just say these things – politicians, communities, everyone needs to take real action, and search for the right solutions.

That’s why I’m arranging even more local visits to community groups and religious groups, to discuss how they feel about the current situation; ask what they think can be done to stop further attacks, and how to prevent division in the aftermath.

There are going to be difficult moments, and tough conversations. But it’s what needs to happen for us to find an effective, long-term solution to tackling extremism.

This is the harder path. But it will ensure that the voices of all those in our community are heard – that our youth understand the value of engagement over argument.

This is a conversation that needs to be ongoing. We need to build forums and platforms that allow for a continuing discussion in our community about these difficult issues.

I want to hear as many views as possible – if you have thoughts you’d like to share, please contact me. This is a conversation we all need to be part of.

What Labour are up to in Hornsey and Wood Green…

It’s very rare for me to post about Labour literature that’s delivered in my constituency – firstly because it so rarely happens, secondly because I am a Lib Dem!

But here goes. Over the last few weeks, some Haringey residents have received a Labour leaflet on their doorstep. In it, Labour have outlined their ‘tough new approach to immigration.’

 Labour's disgraceful anti immigration leaflet - delivered in Hornsey and Wood Green

So apparently, under a Labour government – people who come to the UK will be treated as second class citizens. Labour will stop people who come here from claiming any benefits for two years. It doesn’t matter if they are a refugee fleeing violence, or someone who has been made redundant through no fault of their own, Labour will seemingly abandon them and let them fall into poverty.

Bizarrely, Labour then turn their fire on nurses and care staff, implying there is a major problem with their language skills – this is despite proof that the NHS and care system would collapse without migrant workers.

Shockingly, Labour have only put this leaflet out in areas where immigration is higher – Bounds Green, Noel Park, Wood Green and Tottenham. They have decided not to tell voters in the far West of Haringey what they really think.  Disgraceful.

Here in Haringey, we have a proud tradition of uniting against extremism and the politics of fear. I have always been so proud to represent such a diverse area – there are about 200 languages spoken in my Hornsey and Wood Green constituency. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

But instead of upholding this tradition – Labour are pandering to UKIP and creating division. Even neighbouring Labour MP David Lammy has slammed the approach taken by Labour in Hornsey and Wood Green.

Just like one local resident said on twitter: “Immigrants are welcome in Haringey & this leaflet isn’t.” I couldn’t agree more!