Voting against the Bedroom Tax


I’ve been contacted by many local people who have told me that they are struggling to cope with the hated bedroom tax, introduced by the Tories and Liberal Democrats in Westminster. The Bedroom Tax is affecting over 13,000 households in Birmingham and over 1300 in the Northfield area alone. People receiving housing benefit, who live in council or housing association homes with a spare bedroom...

Birmingham protest against the bedroom tax


On Saturday (15 May) I joined over 250 protestors outside Birmingham Council House to campaign against the bedroom tax. People receiving housing benefit, who live in council or housing association homes with a spare bedroom, face a choice between paying £600 more a year or moving home. But as I know all to well from my constituents, there often just isn’t a choice. The truth is there aren’t...

Short but not sweet: Initial reaction to the Queen’s Speech 2013


Earlier today (8th May) was the State Opening of Parliament, where the Queen formally opens the new Parliamentary Session with a speech setting out the Government’s agenda and priorities for the next year. Unfortunately as anticipated the Queen’s Speech, which was one of the shortest in years, failed to recognise many of the problems concerning real people. It was a stark reminder that this out...

PM should drop the Bedroom Tax


Over 13,000 households in Birmingham will be hit by the government’s new Bedroom Tax.
New figures released by the National Housing Federation this week estimate that 13,315 households in Birmingham – including 1,375 here in the Birmingham Northfield constituency – will be affected when the tax starts in April.

Future of housing in Birmingham


Thank you to everyone who submitted their views to Labour’s policy commission looking at the future of housing in Birmingham. You can read our report online here. We received evidence from a wide range of people and organisations both locally and nationally. This evidence was very helpful in framing the ideas and perspectives which the policy commission put forward as part of the Birmingham...

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Richard Burden

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I was Labour Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield between 1992 and 2019 and a former Shadow Transport Minister. I now chair Healthwatch in Birmingham and Solihull, and the West Midlands Board of Remembering Srebrenica. I also work as a public affairs consultant. I am an effective community advocate and stakeholder alliance builder with a passion for human rights. I am a trustee of the Balfour Project charity and of Citizens Advice Birmingham, and a former Chair of Medical Aid for Palestinians.

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You can reach me by email at or use the form on the Contact page to send me a message.