28 MPs call for ‘full inquiry’ into policing of Miners’ Strike

These MPs have all signed an Early Day Motion marking the 40th anniversary of the strike

Photos of Ian Lavery MP, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Zarah Sultana MP, Richard Burgon MP, Alison Thewliss MP, John McDonell MP

An Early Day Motion has been tabled in parliament calling for a ‘full inquiry’ into the the policing of the 1984-5 Miners’ Strike. Signed by 28 MPs, the motion was tabled to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the start of the strike on March 5.

The motion reads says: “four decades on, many mining communities are still struggling as a result of the industrial vandalism and are still awaiting a just transition to the industries of the future”.

It goes on to argue that during the strike, there was a “weaponisation of the state, including the police, judiciary and civil service, orchestrated by those at the highest level against ordinary men and women in mining communities”, and as such “demands a full inquiry into the policing of the strike”.

The Miners Strike saw extensive use of police violence in an attempt to break the strike and stop pickets from preventing strike breakers from entering workplaces. The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign is calling for a full independent inquiry into police actions at the Battle of Orgreave, one of the most significant moments of violent policing during the strike.

The motion was tabled by Labour MP Ian Lavery, who was president of the National Union of Mineworkers before entering parliament. The motion has also been sponsored by Labour MPs Jon Trickett, Grahame Morris, Ian Mearns and Mary Kelly Foy. Andy McDonald, who currently sits as an independent after having the Labour whip suspended is the sixth sponsor.

Among the other prominent MPs to sign the motion are Labour’s Zarah Sultana, Richard Burgon and John McDonnell, the new Workers’ Party MP George Galloway and the former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

The motion concludes with a note of celebration for the trade union movement and the wider campaigns in support of the miners, reading that the House of Commons “also notes the working class solidarity of the trade union movement nationally and internationally, of the LGBTQ+ community and of people of colour throughout Britain, who all knew the only hope of success was to be united; and pays tribute to the men and women across the coalfield who were thrust to the fore by circumstance to become some of the finest orators, organisers and activists anyone could care to meet.”

The full list of signatories at the time of writing is as follows:

  1. Ian Lavery – Labour
  2. Jon Trickett – Labour
  3. Grahame Morris – Labour
  4. Ian Mearns – Labour
  5. Mary Kelly Foy – Labour
  6. Andy McDonald – Independent
  7. Mick Whitley – Labour
  8. Kate Osborne – Labour
  9. Zarah Sultana – Labour
  10. Nadia Whittome – Labour
  11. Richard Burgon – Labour
  12. Ian Byrne – Labour
  13. Apsana Begum – Labour
  14. Dawn Butler – Labour
  15. Beth Winter – Labour
  16. John McDonnell – Labour
  17. Rebecca Long Bailey – Labour
  18. Jeremy Corbyn – Independent
  19. Bell Ribeiro-Addy – Labour
  20. Imran Hussain – Labour
  21. Claudia Webbe – Independent
  22. Rachael Maskell – Labour
  23. Kim Johnson – Labour
  24. Jonathan Edwards – Independent
  25. George Galloway – Workers Party of Britain
  26. Charlotte Nichols – Labour
  27. Dan Carden – Labour
  28. Alison Thewliss – SNP

Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward

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