Thangam Debbonaire became the Member of Parliament for the Bristol West constituency in May 2015, transforming a Lib-Dem majority of 11,366 into a Labour one of 5,673. She is honoured to represent the citizens of Bristol West, having lived in the constituency since 1991.
Thangam started out as a professional cellist but for the last 25 years her main focus has been working locally, nationally and internationally to end domestic violence.
She moved to Bristol to be Women’s Aid’s first ever National Children’s Officer, setting up support projects in refuges across the UK for children. Since then she has helped to increase the quality and quantity of domestic violence interventions helping women, men and children; victims, perpetrators and witnesses.
After diagnosis in June 2015, Thangam received treatment for breast cancer over the rest of 2015. During this time she worked solely in the constituency, but she began a phased return to Westminster in March 2016.
She was Shadow Minister for Culture, Media and Sport between January 2016 and June 2016; and in October 2016 she rejoined the shadow front bench when she was appointed a Labour Whip.
In Parliament, Thangam chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Refugees and in July 2016 initiated an APPG inquiry into the experiences of new refugees in the UK. The report 'Refugees Welcome?' is expected to be published in spring 2017.
Thangam has a number of other areas of interest including women’s equality, domestic violence, arts and culture, the environment and climate change, and Britain’s relationship with Europe.
In Bristol, Thangam is working to address the effects of the housing crisis in the city, to preserve and strengthen its cultural scene, and to promote its environmental sustainability.
If you would like to contact Thangam, please see her ‘contact’ page.