Cameron's statement on the riots - live blog

Minute-by-minute coverage of the Prime Minister's statement to the Commons.

Stay tuned for live coverage from 11:30am.

11:33 As you'd expect, the Commons is packed. Cameron should begin his statement shortly.

11:34 Cameron is speaking. It is right that we show a "united front," he says. He pays tribute to Tottenham MP David Lammy for his "powerful words and actions" over the past days.

11:35 Mark Duggan's death was used as an excuse by "opportunistic thugs and gangs", Cameron says. There was no causal link.

11:37 The police made the mistake of treating the issue as one of "public order", rather than crime, Cameron says.

11:38 More than 1,200 people have been arrested, Cameron announces. He repeats his line about "phoney human rights concerns" not getting in the way of publishing CCTV pictures.

11:39 Cameron says it was right not to use the army but promises to look at how they could assist the police in the future.

11:41 Police will have the discretion to "remove face coverings" when they are related to criminal behaviour, Cameron announces.

11:43 The insurance industry is expected to pay out £200m. The government has set up a "high street support scheme" to help businesses recover, and tax payments will be deferred for those in greatest need.

11:44 Ministers will meet the "emergency costs" of those made homeless.

11:45 Cameron moves on to the "deeper causes" of the riots. "This is not about poverty it's about culture," he argues. A first mention for "the broken society".

11:47 The heart of the problem is teenage gangs, Cameron says.

11:48 To the "violent minority", Cameron says: "We will track you down, we will find you, we will punish you."

11:49 Cameron closes by saying that we need to show the world, which has looked on "appalled", the Britain "that doesn't destroy but builds".

11.50: Ed Miliband has taken over to respond to Cameron's statement. Britain wants to return to normality, he says.

11.51: Miliband says he agrees with Cameron on the army -- this is a job for the police. But Miliband asks for clarification for what the army will do to support the police, and how the extra strain on the police will be funded, given that budgets are already stretched.

11.53: Miliband asks: will Cameron now think again about cuts to the police force?

11.54: Can Cameron assure that there won't be an arbitrary cap on the amount needed to rebuild the communities affected?

11.55 "To seek to explain is not to seek to excuse. Why are there people who feel they have everything to gain and nothing to lose from wanton vandalism?" Miliband says that the causes are complex. We can only find solutions through hearing from our communities, or trouble will begin again. How will the government make sure communities are engaged?

11.57 Miliband says we must not forget our own responsbility -- not to the minority of young people who committed the violence, but the law-abiding majority. We must ensure there are opportunities for them and they have the right to expect this.

11.58Cameron is now responding to Miliband. He starts by thanking him and agrees about the need for normality.

11.59: On the police, says Cameron, government's have a responsibility to look ahead to potential problems and contingencies. In the future, they could look at what the army could take over to free up frontline police, in emergencies.

12.01: On police budgets, Cameron says the government is looking for cash reductions that are totally achievable without visible reductions in police numbers.

12.02: The Riot Damages Act does not have a cap on the amount of money available to communities, says Cameron.

12.03 People are responsible for their actions, says Cameron. He reiterates that he hopes this cross-party collaboration can continue.

12:06 David Lammy, the MP for Tottenham is speaking. 45 people have lost their homes in Tottenham, he says. The cry is: "Where were the police?"

12:10 Jack Straw, a former Home Secretary, says Cameron must accept that the cuts will lead to fewer police on the streets. He adds that Cameron must reverse Ken Clarke's prison closures. "We need more prisons," he says.

12:13 David Davis asks what the government will do to prevent "evil-minded people" using the events to increase ethnic conflict. Cameron says the government will work closely with community leaders.

12:19 Nadine Dorries asks Cameron why the police did not have imeediate access to plastic bullets and water cannon. Cameron says that the police came close to using baton rounds but adds that the size and mobility of the crowd meant water cannon were rightly not used.

12:22 We're going to end the live blog here. But stay tuned for live coverage of George Osborne's statement on the economy.

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Misogynoir: How social media abuse exposes longstanding prejudices against black women

After decades as an MP, Diane Abbott finally spoke out about the racist and sexist abuse she faces. But she's not alone. 

“Which STD will end your miserable life?” “This is why monkeys don’t belong here.” “I hope you get lynched”. These are just some of the many messages Seyi Akiwowo, a Labour councillor in Newham, told me she has been sent over the past three weeks. Akiwowo has received reams of violent and racist abuse after a video of her suggesting former empires pay reparations to countries they once colonised (and whose resources they still continue to plunder) went viral. She doesn’t expect everyone to agree with her, she said, but people seem to think they’re entitled to hurl abuse at her because she’s a black woman.

The particular intensity of misogyny directed at black women is so commonplace that it was given a name by academic Moya Bailey: misogynoir. This was highlighted recently when Diane Abbott, the country’s first and most-well known black woman MP and current shadow Home secretary, spoke out about the violent messages she’s received and continues to receive. The messages are so serious that Abbott’s staff often fear for her safety. There is an implicit point in abuse like this: women of colour, in particular black women, should know their place. If they dare to share their opinions, they’ll be attacked for it.

There is no shortage of evidence to show women of colour are sent racist and sexist messages for simply having an opinion or being in the public eye, but there is a dearth of meaningful responses. “I don’t see social media companies or government leaders doing enough to rectify the issue,” said Akiwowo, who has reported some of the abuse she’s received. Chi Onwurah, shadow minister for Business, Innovation and Skills, agreed. “The advice from social media experts is not to feed the trolls, but that vacates the public space for them," she said. But ignoring abuse is a non-solution. Although Onwurah notes the police and media giants are beginning to take this abuse seriously, not enough is being done.

Akiwowo has conversations with young women of colour who become less sure they want to go into politics after seeing the way people like Abbott have been treated. It’s an unsurprising reaction. Kate Osamor, shadow secretary of state for International Development, argued no one should have to deal with the kind of vitriol Abbott does. It’s well documented that the ease and anonymity of social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook have changed the nature of communication – and for politicians, this means more abuse, at a faster pace and at all hours of the day. Social media, Onwurah said, has given abuse a “new lease of life”. There needs to be a concerted effort to stop people from using these platforms to spout their odious views.

But there is another layer to understanding misogyny and racism in public life. The rapid and anonymous, yet public, nature of social media has shone a light on what women of colour already know to be a reality. Dawn Butler MP, who has previously described racism as the House of Commons’ “dirty little secret”, told me “of course” she has experienced racism and sexism in Parliament: “What surprises me is when other people are surprised”. Perhaps that’s because there’s an unwillingness to realise or really grapple the pervasiveness of misogynoir.

“Sometimes it takes a lot of effort to get someone to understand the discriminatory nature of peoples’ actions,” Butler explained. “That itself is demoralising and exhausting.” After 30 years of racist and sexist treatment, it was only when Abbott highlighted the visceral abuse she experiences that politicians and commentators were willing to speak out in her support. Even then, there seemed to be little recognition of how deep this ran. In recent years, the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been ridiculed for having a relationship with her in the 70s, as if a black woman’s sexuality is both intriguing and laughable; people regularly imply she’s incompetent, despite having been in Parliament for three decades and at the last general election increasing her majority by a staggering amount; she has even been derided by her own colleagues. Those Labour MPs who began the hashtag #PrayforDiane when she was off work because of illness spoke to a form of bullying that wouldn’t be acceptable in most workplaces.

These supposedly less obvious forms of racism and sexism are largely downplayed or seen as unrelated to discrimination. They might be understood through what influential scholar Stuart Hall called the “grammar of race”. Different from overtly racist comments, Hall says there’s a form of racism that’s “inferential”; naturalised representations of people - whether factual or fictional - have “racist premises and propositions inscribed in them as a set of unquestioned assumptions”. Alongside the racist insults hurled at black women politicians like Abbott, there’s a set of racialised tropes that rely on sexualisation or derision to undermine these women.

The streams of abuse on social media aren’t the only barrier people of colour – and women in particular – face when they think about getting into politics. “I don’t think there’s a shortage of people in the black community who put themselves forward to stand for office, you only have to look at when positions come up the list of people that go for the position,” Claudia Webbe, a councillor and member of Labour's ruling body the National Executive Committee told me. As one of the few black women to hold such a position in the history of the Labour party, she knows from her extensive career how the system works. “I think there is both a problem of unfair selection and a problem of BME [black and minority ethnic] people sustaining the course." Conscious and unconscious racial and gender bias means politics are, like other areas of work in the UK, more difficult to get into if you’re a woman of colour.

“The way white women respond to the way black women are treated is integral,” Osamor says, “They are part of the solution”. White women also face venomous and low-lying forms of sexism that are often overlooked, but at times the solidarity given to them is conditional for women of colour. In a leaked letter to The Guardian, Abbott’s staff criticised the police for not acting on death threats, while similar messages sent to Anna Soubry MP resulted in arrest. When the mainstream left talks about women, it usually means white women. This implicitly turns the experiences of women of colour into an afterthought.

The systematic discrimination against women of colour, and its erasure or addendum-like quality, stems from the colonial racial order. In the days of the British empire, white women were ranked as superior to colonised Asian and African women who were at different times seen as overly sexualised or unfeminine. Black women were at the bottom of this hierarchy. Women of colour were essentially discounted as real women. Recognising this does not equate to pitting white women and women of colour against each other. It is simply a case of recognising the fact that there is a distinct issue of racial abuse.

The online abuse women of colour, and black women specifically, is an issue that needs to be highlighted and dealt with. But there are other more insidious ways that racism and sexism manifest themselves in everyday political life, which should not be overlooked. “Thirty years ago I entered parliament to try and be the change I wanted to see,” Abbott wrote. “Despite the personal attacks and the online abuse, that struggle continues.” That struggle must be a collective one.

Maya Goodfellow researches race and racism in Britain. She is a staff writer at LabourList.