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Thangam Debbonaire appointed as Shadow Housing Secretary

Ryan Fowler

April 6, 2020

Thangam Debbonaire (pictured) has been appointed as Shadow Housing Secretary replacing John Healey who has been promoted to the role of Shadow Defence Secretary. 

Debbonaire, the MP for Bristol West, was previously Shadow Arts and Culture Minister before resigning in June 2016 because of her lack of confidence in the then Labour Party Leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

However, she rejoined Corbyn’s front bench team as a whip later that year before being made Shadow Brexit Minister in January 2020.

At government level housing is part of the brief of the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government Robert Jenrick. Christopher Pincher fills the role of Housing Minister – a non-Cabinet level position.

The Labour party however chose to make create a separate position of Shadow Secretary of State for Housing, as former leader Corbyn had indicated that he would create a separate government department for housing if his party won the election.

It appears that this seems to be the same intention for new Labour leader Kier Starmer.

Prior to her parliamentary career Debbonaire worked as national children’s officer for the Women’s Aid Federation of England and as an accreditation officer, fundraising manager, then national research manager for Respect, the anti-domestic violence organisation.

Other key appointments see Steve Reed take the role of Shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary, Anneliese Dodds become Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer and Bridget Philipson appointed as Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

There is also a return to frontline politics for Ed Miliband as Shadow Business, Energy and Industrial Secretary.

Leadership contender Rebecca Long-Bailey continues in Cabinet as Shadow Education Secretary.

However, there is no role for former Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn despite his assertations that he would like to remain on the front bench.

Key Corbyn allies Richard Burgon, Ian Lavery and Barry Gardiner are all sacked.


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