Emma backs Justice for the Coalfields campaign

May 12, 2014

010_Emma_Lewell-Buck_18_smallPreviously confidential cabinet papers released in January under the have revealed the last Conservative government’s secret plans to force 75 pit closures during the miners’ strike of 1984 – at the cost of 65,000 jobs – despite the public having been assured this was not the case. In addition, the papers show that the then Government had plans to declare a state of emergency and bring in troops if strikes continued.  Emma is one of a number of Labour MPs who have written to the Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude MP as part of Labour’s ‘Justice for the Coalfields’ campaign, calling for an official apology for the actions of the Thatcher government.

The campaign demands that the Government:


  • Make a formal apology for the actions of the previous Conservative Government during the time of the strike;
  • Set out all details of the interactions between the Government and the police at the time of the strike;
  • Release all information about government-police communications specifically around Orgreave, with a proper investigation which might go a little way to rebuild public confidence, as the Shadow Home Secretary has called for previously.

You can read Emma’s letter in full by clicking here.

Labour MPs raised this issue at both Cabinet Office and Prime Minister’s Questions last week.  Both Francis Maude and David Cameron refused to accept the need for an apology.

Emma said:

“These papers show that the public were lied to, and for those who suffered in the coalfield communities it is essential that the full truth is known.  Many coalfield communities still bear the scars of the closures of these events, and for there to be reconciliation there first needs to be recognition by the Government of the injustices that were done.”

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