Tom Clarke (politician)
Thomas "Tom" Clarke, CBE, JP (born 10 January 1941) is a British Labour Party politician who has been a Member of Parliament (MP) since 1982 and has represented Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill since 2005.
Clarke was born in Coatbridge and was educated at All Saints Primary School in Airdrie and Columba High School in Coatbridge, followed by the Scottish College of Commerce in Glasgow. His brother, Tony Clarke would later become a councillor for North Lanarkshire Council.
Clarke has long been a strong supporter of British film making and was an Assistant Director of the Scottish Council for Education Technology and was also the President of the British Amateur Cinematographers Central Council in 1971. He then became a Deputy Director of the Scottish Film Council  and was the organiser of the Scottish International Amateur Film Festival in 1971. In 1973 Clarke submitted his short film, "Give Us a Goal" to the amateur section of the Cannes Film Festival.
Career in Local Government
Clarke's political career began at the age of 18 when he was the election agent for the Labour MP James Dempsey. Aged 22 he then served as a councillor on the Coatbridge Town Council from 1964 and he became a Justice of the Peace for the Lanark area in 1972. The Coatbridge Town Council was replaced with the Monklands District Council in 1974 where Clarke continued to serve Coatbridge. He then served as the Monklands Provost (Mayor) for three consecutive terms from 1974 until 1982. He served as the Vice President of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities from 1976 until 1978 and served as President of the Convention from 1978 until 1980.
Career in Parliament
Clarke was selected to contest the 1982 Coatbridge and Airdrie by-election caused by the death of the sitting Labour MP James Dempsey. He won the by-election on 24 June 1982 with a majority of 10,090 and has remained an MP since. Clarke became known quite quickly in parliament for his work on issues surrounding disabled people and in 1986 he sponsored the 'Disabled Persons (Services, Representation and Consultation) Act'.
After the 1987 general election, Neil Kinnock appointed him Shadow Minister for Personal Social Services from 1987, in which role he served until 1992. Clarke then became a member of the Shadow Cabinet of John Smith as Shadow Scottish Secretary. Clarke was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome in 1992 but has since recovered. He then became the Shadow Minister for Overseas Development in 1993. Clarke left the Shadow Cabinet in 1994 and returned in 1995 to serve as Shadow Minister for the Disabled until 1997 under the leadership of Tony Blair.
Clarke is the current Treasurer of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Overseas Development and authored the International Development (Reporting and Transparency) Act 2006, which ensures that the Secretary of State for International Development reports on what the Department for International Development spends in total on international aid and is categorised into what proportion is spent upon low-income countries, the effectiveness of current spending and the level of transparency of international aid. The Act is also used as a guide to establish the current progress upon United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
He served as the Treasurer of the All Party Group on Carers from 2005 until 2010 and is the current Chair of the All Party Group on Learning Disabilities.
Clarke served on the Administration Committee from 2008 until 2010 and is currently a member of the Standards and Privileges Committee and the Joint Committee reviewing the draft bill on Reform of the House of Lords. In 2014 Clarke received £15,000 in damages for defamation in the Daily Mail which incorrectly claimed he was involved in the decision to reduce the amount of expenses that MP Maria Miller should repay, motivated by his own expenses claims.
Whilst Clarke voted for the Civil Partnership Act, which gave same sex couples identical civil law rights that married couples have, he voted against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, which eventually was passed with cross-party support.
- "Tributes to North Lanarkshire councillor Tony Clarke". BBC News. 23 August 2011.
- Brown, Rob (7 July 1997). "At last, a cineaste in Westminster". The Independent (London).
- The Disabled Persons (Services, Consultation and Representation) Act 1986 (Commencement No. 1) Order 1987, SI 1987/564 (C. 28).
- "MPs call for action on ME". BBC News. 12 May 1999. Retrieved 12 December 2008.
- Davies, P. W.; MacIntyre, D. (20 October 1995). "Blair turns tables in front bench 'clearout'". The Independent (London). Retrieved 22 May 2013.
- William Turvill (9 July 2014). "Daily Mail in £15k libel payout to MP wrongly implicated in expenses wrongdoing". Press Gazette. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
- George Eaton, "Labour and Lib Dem MPs who voted against gay marriage: full list", New Statesman, 06-02-2013. Last retrieved 26 August 2013.
- Tom Clarke MP official constituency website
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Electoral history and profile at The Guardian
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live
- Articles authored at Journalisted
- 2006 International Development Bill
- Accusing utility companies of being greedy
- Compensation payments for Scottish miners
- Victims of CJD
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Coatbridge and Airdrie
|New constituency||Member of Parliament for Monklands West
|New constituency||Member of Parliament for Coatbridge and Chryston
|New constituency||Member of Parliament for Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill
|Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
|Shadow Secretary of State for International Development
Last known is Barry Sheerman
12 May 1994
|Shadow Minister of State for Social Security
(Shadow Minister for Disabled People)
|Minister for Film and Tourism