Somali Friends of Labour

Rushanara Ali’s contribution to the parliamentary debate about Somalia is worth a read – the debate was held in advance of the conference hosted by the UK government on the future of Somalia later this month. 

Last week I was in a cafe with Rushanara and leading members of the newly launched Tower Hamlets Somali Friends of Labour, discussing what needed to be raised in this debate. 

Rushanara, along with Alun Michael and other MPs, launched a national Somali Friends of Labour late last year. 

Following on from the national launch at Westminster some local Labour supporters,  led by Abdirashid Hirad and Amina Ali, came together to launch a Tower Hamlets Somali Friends of Labour, intended to provide a space for local people to come together to ensure that the Somali community has a strong voice inside the Labour Party, and to support the Labour Party at election time.  It’s inspiring to see that the priorities and needs of Rushanara’s Somali constituents for their mother country are already being heard in parliament.   
For me, the launch of Tower Hamlets Somali Friends of Labour was a hugely important step in rebuilding our democracy in Tower Hamlets.  All too often small groups that shout the loudest are the ones who get their voices heard in local decision making.  This group sees a broad base of Somali people in Tower Hamlets, from across the borough, different professions and backgrounds, unite to make their voice heard, with the Labour Party as their political home. 
We had a public launch in Bethnal Green, with Nicky Gavron AM mobilising people to vote for Ken and speaking about the vital issue of housing policy – her thoughts about the event are here. 
Jim Fitzpatrick MP also spoke, alongside fellow councillors Motin Uz Zaman and Bill Turner – Cllr Siraj Islam also attended. 
A few pictures and links to further information about Tower Hamlets Somali Friends of Labour below. 
Tower Hamlets Somali Friends of Labour Facebook Group
East London Advertiser coverage

Rachael Saunders, photo by Dan McCurry


Amina Ali and Rachael Saunders – photo by Dan McCurry

Motin Uz Zaman, Nicky Gavron, Amina Ali, Rachael Saunders