This week's MP's column comes from Bradford South MP Judith Cummins 

FOLLOWING the conviction of nine men in 2019 for 22 offences including rape and of inciting child prostitution, I wrote to both the Council and Bradford Safeguarding Children Board calling for a wide-ranging review into Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and how the authorities would use the learning to address the collective failure to keep children safe.

I therefore welcomed the Independent Serious Case Review that was commissioned as without knowledge of past failings it will not be possible to protect children today and tomorrow.

Authorities in Bradford have rightly apologised to victims of child sexual exploitation in the district over the past 20 years, but apologies and remorse for past failings are not enough to protect children.

I know that a new management team that Bradford Council has put in place has made some progress in tackling past weaknesses in child protection, but I worry that the pace of improvements isn’t fast enough.

I want to be assured that there are protections in place now so that what happened in the past cannot be happening today or in the future.


It really is true that “a week is a long time in politics”. In the last week before the summer recess I went into parliament on Monday morning as usual and by lunchtime found out I was going to be made Deputy Speaker for a week!

This is a rare occurrence. Temporary deputy speakers are seldom appointed during a parliamentary session. In fact, this has only happened twice since the 20th century, and not since 1972. It is also the very first time a Bradford MP has been in the Speaker’s chair.

I was honoured to be appointed by Mr Speaker and the Leader of the House as temporary Deputy Speaker to keep business in the Commons running smoothly while Deputy Speaker Dame Rosie Winterton self-isolated. Flying the flag for Bradford in the mother of parliaments. It was a humbling and, as it turned out an eventful experience.


Recently I raised in the Commons the serious issue of quad bikes being driven on the streets of Bradford South and bringing misery to many of my constituents. However, Jacob Rees-Mogg MP responding for the Government, declined to commit to having a debate on banning of their road use.

In Mr Rees-Mogg’s constituency of North East Somerset farmers occasionally use the roads to get to different parts of their farms, but here in Bradford we are being plagued by quad bikes driving up down our roads and pavements – often with no number plates and riders wearing face masks so they are not recognised. That is why I am working to bring a 10-minute rule bill on quad bikes before the house in the next Parliamentary session.


On Covid, the vaccination program continues to go well. This is a testament to NHS staff and ordinary people doing their bit and getting the jab, more so than the Government’s confused strategy.

The Government’s selective adherence to its own test and trace rules have yet again undermined its own public health message and therefore public confidence. As amply demonstrated by the PM’s reluctance to self-isolate after being pinged. Legislation may have changed but it’s vital to follow guidelines and get jabbed. There are people fighting for their lives in hospitals, we must not forget about them.

We all want restrictions to be eased, but the Government needs to put the seat belt on before driving off. 


Finally, I want to once again highlight the genuinely lifesaving and life-changing work of our community and faith groups who continue to make sure that families across Bradford South stay supported, fed and connected.

Throughout pandemic, I’ve continued working with our community sector right across the constituency. It is a sad indictment of the Government that so many food banks have a need to exist in 2021, but the selflessness and support of ordinary people in the past year has shown the real values of ordinary people.

Thank you all for making a difference.

As we come out of the pandemic, we must not forget these fantastic organisations. They must have a properly funded place in local plans that goes beyond pandemic emergency and feeding of the hungry.

If you live in Bradford South and need help from one of these fantastic groups or would like to aid them in their post pandemic response effort, please contact my office at