Read below the full text from Kate’s letter to Peter Kyle MP Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
I am writing to confirm my resignation as Shadow Northern Ireland Private Parliamentary Secretary. As I set out in my call earlier this week, I am pleased that you asked me to take up the PPS position in December 2021.
I am proud of the work we did on the Legacy and Reconciliation Bill ensuring our opposition to such a problematic bill was made clear. It remains a travesty that the Government forced through a bill that not one Northern Irish political party nor Member of Parliament was in favour of – a bill that gives more rights to people who committed crimes than their victims.
Visiting and supporting Unite the Union members at Regina Coelie House was a particular highlight too, and I hope the fight will continue to support homeless women at invaluable facilities such as this in Belfast and further afield.
In Westminster, a lot of my time and work is focussed on my membership of the Woman & Equalities and Education Select Committees and the Backbench Business Committee. In order to be the most effective representative possible for my constituents, I have made the decision to step back from some of these positions in order to concentrate more on local issues.
Constituency work is always my priority, particularly during this period when people across the Jarrow constituency are facing a hardship not seen for generations, with the cost-of-living crisis we currently find ourselves in making daily life a struggle for many people across local communities. This, of course, is as a result of 12 years of Tory government, the Conservatives deliberate inaction and failure to support our communities and their lies on their levelling up agenda. With wages at a record low, unemployment in my constituency higher than the national average, inflation at a 40 year high and 41% of kids in Jarrow living in poverty there is an enormous amount of support needed to give my constituents. People are struggling to pay food and energy bills – no longer faced with a choice over heating or eating – but unable to do either – this poverty is a political choice by this Government and I want to spend as much time as possible fighting this Government and supporting my constituents through this time.
I have embarked on a series of roadshows through the summer and intend on building on these to give my constituents as much support as possible. I have spent a lot of time reflecting on this decision and I wish to thank you for your understanding and respecting my wishes.
I wish the Shadow Northern Ireland team all the best and I look forward to supporting your future work from the backbenches.
Kate Osborne MP
Member of Parliament for the Jarrow constituency