Emma Lewell-Buck

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Emma Lewell-Buck
Emma Lewell-Buck.jpg
Shadow Minister for Children and Families
Assumed office
8 October 2016
Preceded by Sharon Hodgson
Member of Parliament
for South Shields
Assumed office
2 May 2013
Preceded by David Miliband
Majority 10,614 (29.3%)
Personal details
Born (1978-11-08) 8 November 1978 (age 38)[1]
South Shields, England
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Spouse(s) Simon
Alma mater Northumbria University
Durham University
Website http://www.emma-lewell-buck.net/

Emma Louise Lewell-Buck (born 8 November 1978) is a British Labour Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament for South Shields since winning a by-election in 2013.[2] She is South Shields' first female MP.[1][3]

Early life[edit]

From a family of shipyard workers, Lewell-Buck was born in South Shields. She is a direct descendant of William Wouldhave, the inventor of the lifeboat.[4] Lewell-Buck studied politics and media studies at Northumbria University,[1] before gaining a master's degree in social work from Durham University.

As a social worker, she specialised in child protection, and has represented the Primrose ward in Jarrow as a South Tyneside councillor since 2004.[1]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Lewell-Buck won the safe Labour seat of South Shields with a reduced majority at a 2013 by-election following David Miliband's decision to leave the House of Commons.[5]

In June 2013, she became a member of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee replacing Thomas Docherty.[6] In October 2013 she was appointed Private Parliamentary Secretary to Ivan Lewis, Labour's shadow Northern Ireland Secretary.

In 2014, she claimed that some people were "having to bury their relatives in their back gardens" as she proposed a Funeral Services Bill intended to require funeral providers to offer a low-cost option[7]

In July 2015, she was elected as a member of the Work and Pensions Select Committee.[8]

In January 2016, Lewell-Buck became shadow minister for devolution and local government in Jeremy Corbyn's shadow cabinet reshuffle.[9] On 29 June 2016, Lewell-Buck announced her resignation from the post, commenting that she was "heartbroken at the state of the [Labour] Party".[10] This was a reference to a string of shadow cabinet resignations during the summer leadership crisis. In October 2016, she was re-appointed to Jeremy Corbyn's front bench team as Shadow Education Minister responsible for children and families' policy.[11]

Hunger and Food Poverty[edit]

Lewell-Buck joined the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) chaired by Frank Field and the Bishop of Truro. The group launched an inquiry into the root causes behind hunger, food poverty and the rise in demand of food banks across the UK, and published its final report in the House of Commons on 8 December 2014. After the report Lewell-Buck said in Parliament "Food poverty is a clear consequence of the Government's ideological assault on the social safety net and the people who rely on it. One hungry person is a complete disgrace, but thousands of hungry people are a national disaster."[12]

Jobs Fairs[edit]

During Lewell-Buck's election campaign she stated that helping to bring jobs to those who were unemployed in South Shields was a priority. She organised a jobs fair in her constituency in November 2013 promoting over 1000 jobs, which was repeated in November 2014 after she pledged to make it into an annual event.[13]


  1. ^ a b c d Swan, Kim (21 April 2013). "Emma Lewell-Buck planning to make South Shields history". The Journal. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  2. ^ Eaton, George (3 May 2013). "Labour holds South Shields as UKIP takes second". New Statesman. 
  3. ^ Wintour, Patrick (3 May 2013). "South Shields byelection: Labour holds off Ukip surge". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  4. ^ "Emma Lewell-Buck to fight South Shields seat for Labour". BBC News. 11 April 2013. Retrieved 3 May 2013. 
  5. ^ Pidd, Helen (3 May 2013). "South Shields' Emma Lewell-Buck vows to be 'different sort of MP". Guardian. Retrieved 4 April 2015. 
  6. ^ "Environment, Food and Rural Affairs – Committees". They work for you. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 14 June 2013. 
  7. ^ "Funeral cost rise triggers MP's 'garden burials' warning". BBC. 9 December 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2015. 
  8. ^ "Work and Pensions Committee – membership". UK Parliament. Retrieved 26 September 2015. 
  9. ^ "Labour reshuffle: Shadow ministers quit in protest". BBC News. 6 January 2016. Retrieved 25 July 2016. 
  10. ^ Mann, Sebastian (29 June 2016). "Labour's Shadow Education secretary Pat Glass quits after two days". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 25 July 2016. 
  11. ^ "Meet Labour's new education team". 10 October 2016. 
  12. ^ "Hansard debates 20 December 2014". Parliament UK. Retrieved 4 April 2015. 
  13. ^ "South Shields MP hails job fair success". Shields Gazette. 17 November 2014. Retrieved 4 April 2015. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
David Miliband
Member of Parliament for
South Shields