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Yvette Cooper: UK needs free childcare for all

Labour leadership candidate Yvette Cooper wants to adopt Scandinavian-style system of universal childcare, with 30 hours of free care for all preschool children over the age of two.

Writing in The Independent, Ms Cooper said she wanted to see new tax credits to help parents out in the period after maternity leave finishes, and that the pledge would be a cornerstone of her leadership campaign.

She said: "We should campaign for universal childcare - as other countries, including Scandinavia, have.

"That means breakfast clubs, after-school clubs, holiday clubs and free nursery places and childcare available full-time, not just for three and four-year-olds but two-year-olds too."

Yvette Cooper visits a primary school Credit: Rui Vieira / PA Wire

Cooper wants to put 'families at heart' of Labour party

Yvette Cooper has said the Labour party has to offer hope to families. Credit: Stefan Rousseau / PA Wire/PA Images

Labour leadership hopeful Yvette Cooper has said she will put measures to help families at the heart of her campaign to rebuild Labour after its election defeat.

The shadow home secretary said Labour had to "reach outwards" and "rebuild", winning back voters who deserted the party in favour of the Tories, Ukip and the SNP.

Ms Cooper believes she can smash the "glass ceiling" and become Labour's first permanent female leader, vowing to "shake up the system".

In an interview with The Sun on Sunday (£), mother-of-three Ms Cooper, whose husband and former shadow chancellor Ed Balls lost his Westminster seat in the general election, said Labour had to offer hope to families.

We need to put families at the heart of our politics. As a mum, I feel very strongly about that because my family, my kids are the most important thing in my life.

That has to be reflected in what we do. We have got to reach out and rebuild and that means winning back voters.

We've got to show practical things we can do to help families get on, to know their kids can get an apprenticeship, have a good start in life and go to university.

– Yvette Cooper

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Cooper slams Government's immigration plans

Yvette Cooper, the shadow home secretary and Labour leadership contender, has accused David Cameron of "taking people for fools" after new figures showed a significant increase in net migration to the UK.

Yvette Cooper, Labour's shadow home secretary. Credit: PA Wire

Ms Cooper said there was a "massive gap" between the government's "rhetoric" on immigration and the "reality".

She said: “David Cameron is taking people for fools. On the day he has promised yet again to cut net migration to the tens of thousands, these figures show it is over three times that target.

"This massive gap between rhetoric and reality, between promise and delivery, just destroys trust in anything Ministers say on immigration."

Yvette Cooper dodges leadership questions

Yvette Cooper has dodged questions about her potential leadership ambitions after a disappointing night for the Labour Party.

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper. Credit: PA Wire

When asked by ITV News whether she would be standing for leader if Ed Miliband resigned, she said: "I really don't think we should be talking about this. We have just had an election and we've got a lot more election results to come.

When second journalist repeated the question, Ms Cooper said: "Seriously no there isn't one."

Yvette Cooper: Exit poll 'just doesn't feel right'

Yvette Cooper, Labour's shadow home secretary, has told ITV News that an exit poll showing the Tories as the largest party "just doesn't feel right".

Ms Cooper said the poll "simply doesn't fit" with what the party "felt on the ground".

"We've just got to wait till the results come in," she told Tom Bradby.

UK 'within touching distance' of a Labour government

Yvette Cooper has said the country is "within touching distance" of a Labour government.

The shadow home secretary told BBC's Andrew Marr Show, "We've got four days to go and look, we are getting a very warm response.

Labour's Yvette Cooper spoke to Andrew Marr. Credit: BBC/The Andrew Marr Show

"I think we are within touching distance of having a Labour government with a completely different vision for Britain.

"It's about our values as well as the policies we're setting out."

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Cooper: Security services' hands were tied by May

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper claimed the security services' hands were tied for nearly five years by Mrs May's "wrong" decision to scrap powers to move terror suspects away from their extremist networks.

Relocation powers have been reintroduced by the coalition this year but Ms Cooper called for the security services to immediately brief the Intelligence and Security Committee on how the loss of the measures might have affected their work.

This would allow MPs to review whether the loss of relocation powers had led to more British jihadists travelling to Syria and Iraq and more radicalisation in the UK.

Cooper: Security services' hands were tied by May Credit: Jeff Overs/BBC/PA Wire

Ms May told BBC1's Andrew Marr Show:

I think [the security services'] hands have been tied I think by the Government. I think we should have had the control orders in place across this Parliament which we haven't had because they removed some of the powers, and I think that has caused them more problems.

It's taken them five years, five years of us arguing, five years of security experts arguing that this was the wrong approach.

And so I think that the fact that Theresa May could take the decision to remove those relocation powers against all that expert advice, against the arguments that were made in Parliament, I think was the wrong thing to do. We do need to know more about whether that has increased the risk as a result, about what difference it's made to some of these very serious cases.

Labour MP claims rape tweets show Ennis-Hill is right

Labour's shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper believes the rape tweets directed at Jessica Ennis-Hill prove why her stance on Ched Evans is so important.

Ennis-Hill received abusive tweets from trolls on Friday after making it clear she would remove her name from a stand at Sheffield United if the club offer the convicted rapist a contract.

The tweets directed at the Sheffield born Olympic Champion are currently being investigated by South Yorkshire police.

Cooper also urged the League One club to "recognise their responsibility to the local community" by resisting the temptation to offer Evans a professional deal.

Labour to 'look carefully' at PM's anti-terror proposals

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper has said Labour would "look carefully" at any anti-terror proposals the Prime Minister brings forward.

"The Government should be introducing mandatory de-radicalisation programmes as a priority," Yvette Cooper said.

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper. Credit: PA/PA Wire

"Our border controls are simply not picking people up, and no new orders will change that. Only this week a suspect on bail managed to flee with his passport, reportedly to Syria, Cooper said."

“The Prime Minister would be well-advised to reinstate measures we know work, and we hope some of these changes will be in any proposed legislation.”

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