Articles by Jacqui Smith
Jacqui Smith is a former home secretary and writes the Monday Politics column for Progress

Vote Leave

Time to build a plan ahead of the onslaught

Jacqui Smith  |  24 June 2016

Through bitter and angry tears at 4.30am this morning, my overriding feeling was that I had let my children down. Parents of teenagers often know what this feels like, but today I realise I have let everyone else’s children down too. One of the reasons for the Leave vote is a feeling of immense alienation …

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Vote Labour poster

Last week’s results were not good enough – full stop

Jacqui Smith  |  9 May 2016

Expectations management is an important part of the media-handling of elections. However, I refuse to have my expectations of Labour success managed by our leadership. Our election results were not good enough to put us on target for a Labour government in 2020, therefore they are not good enough full stop. And to those suggesting …

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The Archers

Helen’s story needs to resonate in the real world too

Jacqui Smith  |  12 April 2016

I was the member of parliament for Ambridge. For those of you who are not fans of the Archers, I know it is a Radio 4 drama series (can’t bring myself to say ‘soap’) and therefore not real, but nevertheless the village of Inkberrow with its pub called the Bull is widely recognised to be …

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Police Community Support Officers PCSOs

Bobbies on the beat, not big beasts

Jacqui Smith  |  7 March 2016

I agree with Jeremy Corbyn on his decision that a future Labour government would keep the police and crime commissioners introduced by the coalition government. He made this announcement in launching Labour’s campaign for the police and crime commissioner elections, which will be fought in all police areas apart from London and Manchester on 5 …

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Classroom - blue

Being in government matters

Jacqui Smith  |  18 January 2016

I was a teacher for 11 years before I went into parliament in 1997. In Worcestershire, we had the dubious distinction in those Tory years of having the worst nursery education provision in the United Kingdom, which made us the worst in Europe. A Labour government changed that. I was fortunate to teach in one …

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City of London_2

Select committees leading the opposition

Jacqui Smith  |  11 January 2016

For reasons which have been well explored – and to which we will return, the prime minister and leader of the opposition have not had good starts to 2016. But as parliament returns for its first full week in 2016, my tip is to keep an eye on what’s happening in parliament’s select committees. While …

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House of Commons bench

Politics is a team sport

Jacqui Smith  |  23 November 2015

The unsung hero of the shadow frontbench is undoubtedly Rosie Winterton, the chief whip. It was clear from the time that Jeremy Corbyn was elected as leader on a platform of policies at odds with many in the parliamentary Labour party that whipping would be a constant tightrope. As a former chief whip myself, I …

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Trafalgar Square

The meaning of internationalism

Jacqui Smith  |  16 November 2015

What a very grim weekend it has been watching the aftermath of the Paris attacks. I have turned down many requests for interviews as I dislike the need for speculation and anger-driven conclusions which immediate responses require. However, three days on, I offer here a few reflections on Friday’s events. First, my heart goes out …

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Manchester town hall

Innovative ideas in grim times

Jacqui Smith  |  10 November 2015

Opposition is pretty grim – and five years of it does not make it any easier. Our senior parliamentary representatives have to spend their days responding to other people’s ideas and doing their best to mitigate the worst of Tory proposals. Sometimes a timely and effective parliamentary campaign can slow down the worst impact of …

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Bedtime

The bedrock of social justice

Jacqui Smith  |  29 October 2015

Labour rejected the fatalistic assumption that public services could never really deliver higher standards or fairer access, reflects Jacqui Smith Before my election to parliament in 1997, I was a teacher in Tory Worcestershire. My classroom was in a portakabin and a bucket to catch the drips coming through the roof was an important teaching resource. …

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