Canary Workers’ Co-op Canary Workers’ Co-op

Theresa May stumbles at PMQs as she’s accused of having ‘a stench of complacency’

Theresa May and Sarah Jones at PMQs

Labour MP Sarah Jones accused Theresa May of having “a stench of complacency” at Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) on 23 January. Jones questioned the PM over the delays in installing sprinklers and removing flammable cladding following the Grenfell Tower fire.

“A stench of complacency”

Jones reminded May of her promise after the fire that:

she would do whatever it takes to keep our people safe.

Describing Grenfell as “the tip of the iceberg” she described the situation now, 19 months later:

85% of the hundreds of blocks draped in exactly the same highly flammable cladding are still covered… Thousands of council and private buildings across the country don’t have sprinklers despite the fire services saying they are essential.

Jones also pointed out that:

the government doesn’t even collect data on the number of fires in tower blocks.

Read on...

Before she really let rip on the government’s record and asked:

As the Prime Minister wastes billions on her No Deal gamble, there is a stench of complacency about these things that matter…When will the Prime Minister be able to tell this country that she has honoured her promise?

You can watch the question and May’s response in full here:

“All the compassion of reading out a shopping list”

May spluttered through her reply, losing her words on two occasions. Something that was noticed by social media users:

Another Twitter user summed up May’s response:

And as the union Unite put it:

People deserve better

72 people died in the Grenfell fire. In October 2018, 16 months after the fire, 151 families had still not been rehoused. May has also faced criticism from the petitions committee after she turned down a petition from survivors. It stated that she:

failed to acknowledge that the petition had been started by bereaved families and survivors, or to express any concern for their suffering and loss.

May’s words at PMQs are not only a further insult to survivors but deeply worrying to all those who are living in potential deathtraps. It’s not OK. Empty promises and platitudes are not enough. People want, need and deserve better.

Featured image via Twitter screenshot / BBC Politics

Get involved

We’re a thorn in the side of the establishment, but we can’t do it without your help

Your fight is our fight. But as many of you will know, speaking truth to power has never been easy, especially for a small, independent media outlet such as the Canary. We have weathered many attempts to silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media. Now more than ever, we need your support.

We don’t have fancy offices, and our entire staff works remotely. Almost all of our income is spent on paying the people who make the Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our team and enables us to continue to do what we do: disrupt power, and amplify people.

But we can’t do this without you. So please, if you appreciate our work, can you help us continue the fight?

Canary Workers’ Co-op Support us