Speaker for the House of Commons, Rt Hon John Bercow named Sadiq Khan as Patchwork Foundation’s Labour MP of the Year and Overall MP of the Year at an inaugural and prestigious event in the Speaker’s House in Parliament.
Over 30 Members of Parliament, from all over the country, were nominated by their constituents for the award, which recognises MPs who have worked hard to ensure that deprived and minority communities in their constituencies are represented in Parliament.
MPs were judged on their work and engagement with the following groups; deprived communities, faith communities, ethnic communities, sexual orientation communities and other communities traditionally excluded by the political process. After much consideration, Sadiq was judged by an independent panel of expert judges to be both the Labour MP of the Year and the overall winner of the MP of the Year Award!
As the MP for Tooting, Sadiq represents over 105,000 constituents who follow Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish, Sikh faiths and those who do not follower a particular faith, in a constituency which is one of the most ethnically diverse in the country. Sadiq regularly visits faith centres and religious services, and works closely with the Balham and Tooting Community Association (BATCA) to celebrate Tooting’s diversity. Sadiq also works hard to protect vital services for vulnerable constituents; his work has included fighting Wandsworth Council’s decision to cut meals on wheels and school crossing patrols, securing an £8million investment for better access at Earlsfield Station, as well as hosting events to tackle issues such as problems with social housing in Wandsworth, youth unemployment and the issues affecting the elderly.
The Patchwork Foundation aims to promote and encourage the positive integration of deprived and minority communities into British political society. The MP of the Year Awards was launched in Parliament on Monday night and the awards were presented by Martyn Lewis CBE, the television presenter and journalist.
MP of the Year Sadiq Khan MP said,
“I was born in Tooting, went to school here and now I am raising my family here – I wouldn’t want to be MP anywhere else. I have been Tooting’s Member of Parliament for over eight years now, and I have always taken great pride in having the opportunity to represent all of the people of Tooting, my home, in Parliament.
“In Tooting we are blessed with an incredibly diverse and harmonious community and being a Muslim and the son of Pakistani migrants, it has always been my priority to work hard to make sure I engage with, and represent, all of the religious and ethnic groups in my constituency.
“There are so many MPs who work extremely hard for their constituents and I am therefore very humbled to win this award. I would like to thank all of my constituents who nominated me.
Ann Douglas, a Tooting constituent who nominated Sadiq for the award said,
“When I heard about the Patchwork Foundation's Awards for MP of the year I was so pleased to have the opportunity to nominate my MP, Sadiq Khan.
“Sadiq loves Tooting, it's like an extension of his family . As an Earlsfield resident I have seen firsthand the brilliant work Sadiq Khan has done supporting local residents – he led the campaign to improve the facilities at Earlsfield Station, challenged the massive overdevelopment at Springfield Hospital and joined parents to fight plans to close Windmill One O’Clock Club. He also works very hard to represent all communities and faiths in his constituency. Sadiq is a role model for respect, tolerance and understanding and a unifying force for bringing people together which is so important in the wake of the tragic death of Drummer Lee Rigby.
“Sadiq is always there to stand up for his constituents and is never too busy to listen to your concerns, even if you're bending his ear in the supermarket or down at the leisure centre. I'm delighted by the news that Sadiq has won the award for MP of the year - he definitely deserves it.”
Sadiq with the judging panel.
Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons said,
“I wish to congratulate the Patchwork Foundation for all their excellent work over the past year in encouraging the positive integration of deprived and minority communities into British political society. I also congratulate all the Members of Parliament on their nominations as MP of the Year and especially Rt Hon Sadiq Khan MP for winning the MP of the Year Award.”
Rt Hon Ed Miliband, Leader of the Labour Party said,
“I want to congratulate Patchwork Foundation for all the excellent work they have done over the last 12 months to help encourage the positive integration of deprived and minority communities into British politics. I’m particularly happy to see so many Labour Members of Parliament nominated for these awards, and particular congratulations to my friend and colleague Sadiq for winning MP of the Year Award. I know how hard Sadiq works, not just in his own constituency of Tooting, but across the country to ensure that the views of all different communities are heard here in Westminster and he certainly deserves this award.”