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Wokingham Councillors have asked me to bring this to attention. I agree with them that the last thing we need are big parking charge rises when we need to get inflation down and help people on stretched budgets. We need to promote Wokingham shops, not price people out of them. I have been told:

 

Breaking News – Wokingham’s LibDem  /Lab / Ind Coalition propose to double parking charges, to charge on Sundays and in the evenings!

This image, copied from the agenda for the Council’s Executive Meeting later this month shows that the price of one hour of parking will increase by 62.5%, massively ahead of inflation.

For years officers at WBC asked the Conservative councillors to increase parking charges across the borough.

We repeatedly resisted this for two reasons.
1) We always wanted to promote businesses and didn’t want to prevent residents from enjoying our towns, supporting local businesses or from living their daily lives.
2) The justification was not strong enough as the cost of running our car parks had not dramatically changed.

Parking charge timings are also set to change, with the money hungry coalition proposing implementing charges until 10pm, a change from the current 6pm stop time.
Anyone used to going out for dinner at the weekend, parking and not needing a ticket after 6pm, is therefore likely to be caught out and fined through until 10pm.

The coalition has also proposed to start charging on Sundays. Again, Conservative councillors repeatedly resisted this.

In a time when the cost of living is significantly increasing, when many businesses are still struggling to regain their footfall and customers post-pandemic, the LAST THING our council should be doing right now is increasing the price of parking.

It will discourage people from shopping local, further impact already struggling businesses, increase the cost of living in our community and penalise those who work in our towns or use our car parks as part of their commute.

Wokingham Borough Conservatives will fight against this disgraceful and unjustified daylight robbery of our community.
We will keep members updated to ensure you can sign the petition and give your support to fight this.

 

Karin Smyth, MP for Bristol South, has slammed the Government for its “economically illiterate” mini-Budget following news that the majority of people in south Bristol will end up paying for a tax cut for bankers and the top 629,000 earners in the country.

Despite being called a “Fiscal event” by the UK Tory Government, today’s announcements were anything but. The announcements made by the Chancellor will see the greatest shift in taxation and borrowing policy since 1972 with the top rate of Income Tax for the wealthiest 629,000 people being scrapped, the cap of bankers’ bonuses being eradicated and oil/gas companies not having to pay a single penny more whilst the nations credit card is used to limit energy bills for the next six months.

Since the statement on the morning of Friday 23 September the international markets have spooked at the future prospects of the UK. The pound sterling to the dollar has hit a 37 year low, the 10-year borrowing rate for the UK Government has hit a 12 year high and independent forecasters are predicting recession is on its way.

Karin Smyth, MP for Bristol South, said:

“Today’s mini-Budget can be summed up in two words: economically illiterate. It contained within it no measures to make sure we balanced the books, no indication that fair taxation was the way forward, and definitely no sense of how we will invest in our public services.

“By letting oil and gas producing companies off the hook for the hikes in energy prices the Government has decided that we must all pay through borrowing. The financial markets have already shown how spooked they are by the future prospects of the Government’s plans with the pound hitting lows not seen in a generation. This will only serve to drive up the price of our weekly shop.

“The priorities of this government are seriously misplaced. Instead of ensuring taxation is fair and those with the broadest shoulders bearing the biggest burden, the Government has done a reverse Robin Hood: taking from those just about managing and giving to the most comfortable. A Labour Government would drive fair investment and a sound economy for everyone.”

The post Karin Smyth MP slams “economically illiterate” fiscal event delivered by the Government first appeared on Karin Smyth.

CROWDS gathered in Weston yesterday, September 11, to hear a rare proclamation of the new King, Charles III.

Scores of people attended the once-in-a-lifetime event, at the Italian Gardens, as the local Accession Proclamation was heard for North Somerset residents. 

The Proclamation of a new sovereign is an ancient tradition that can be traced back hundreds of years.

The ceremony doesn’t create a new king, but simply announces the accession which took place on Saturday, September 10, at St James’s Palace in London. 

It was read by North Somerset Council chairperson Cllr Karin Haverson, who was accompanied by Weston MP John Penrose, North Somerset MP Liam Fox, Weston’s deputy mayor Cllr Pete McAleer, and other councillors and dignitaries.

At 3pm, the formal ceremony which marks the beginning of the King’s reign was read. 

Cllr Haverson said: “We come together this afternoon following the passing of our late Sovereign, Queen Elizabeth the Second.

“Our sadness at this time is shared by people across the globe, as we remember with gratitude and great affection the lifetime of service given by our longest reigning monarch, and we give thanks for all she did for our country during her long and illustrious reign.

“Here in North Somerset we held Her Majesty in great esteem and it was our immense fortune to be visited by her several times – including in her silver jubilee year in 1977 and most recently in 2007.

“Many people will have personal memories of those visits, which will stay with them for a very long time.”

Books of Condolence will remain to be signed at the Town Hall, in Weston, and at Castlewood in Clevedon throughout the period of national mourning.

People can record their tributes in the books between 9am and 6pm, Monday to Friday. 

Final Day for Submissions to the Black Country Plan

Wendy Morton (Aldridge-Brownhills)

Final day for comments on the extra Green Belt sites added to the Black Country Plan!
 
Constituents have until 5pm today September 5th 2022, to comment on the two additional sites added to the Black Country Plan.
These two 2 further sites on our greenbelt between Aldridge and Streetly come with the proposal of 685 new homes.
You can read more about the plan by visiting: www.blackcountryplan.dudley.gov.uk/t2/p7
 
You can email your comments to blackcountryplan@dudley.gov.uk
The deadline for submitting comment is 5pm TODAY!
 
I have made my submission – don’t forget to make your views known too.

Date: Thursday, September 1st, 2022

Edition number: 38

 

The roll out of the Covid autumn booster vaccine begins today (Thursday, September 1st) in Wales.

Those who are eligible will be invited to have it this autumn.

We’ll let you know when it’s your turn and where you need to go. There is no need to contact the health board or your GP to ask for an appointment.

 

Please be patient.

 

If you’re eligible, you’ll receive an invite to have the booster at one location.

This could be one of our local vaccination centres (Canolfan Gorseinon or Aberafan Shopping Centre), a community pharmacy or your GP surgery.

Some people will already have received their appointments, others will follow.

If you receive a letter and wish to change or cancel your appointment, please follow the instructions on the letter.

Residents in care homes and the housebound will be visited by vaccinators.

If you’re missing a booster you’ll move on to receive your autumn booster only, as this will be sufficient to increase your protection.

The Covid autumn booster will support the immunity of those who are at greatest risk from the disease, improving their protection against severe illness and helping to protect the NHS during what is likely to be another challenging winter.

Those who are eligible for the booster will also be offered a separate flu vaccination, along with some others who will receive the flu vaccination only.

 

Those eligible are:

•       Pregnant women

•       People aged 50 and over

•       People with a long-term health condition (from six months for flu and aged five for Covid)

•       People who live in a care home

•       People with a learning disability

•       People with a severe mental illness

•       People who live with someone who has a weakened immune system (from six months for flu and aged five for Covid)

•       Carers aged 16 and over

•       Frontline health and social care workers

•       All staff working in care homes for older adults

 

Flu only

1.     Children aged two and three will be offered the nasal spray flu vaccination by their GP surgery.

2.     School pupils from reception to year 11 will be offered the nasal spray flu vaccination in school.

 

We’re leaving no one behind. So if you’re missing a first or second Covid vaccine, please contact our booking team on 01792 200492 or 01639 862323, between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Saturday.

Support with the cost of living

Tulip Siddiq (Hampstead and Kilburn)

The cost of living crisis is the biggest issue facing our country at the moment. With food prices increasing, heating bills going up and taxes rising, I know this is a very difficult time for many families in Hampstead and Kilburn and across the country.

If you are struggling to keep up with rising costs, angry about the lack of help, or are confused about what support is available to you: you are not alone. 

If you do need help with the cost of living crisis, I have set up this page to signpost some of the available support and advice from some fantastic organisations. I am of course pushing the Government to provide much more support for families during this crisis, but I hope this page will be helpful in explaining some of the support that is currently available.

If there is anything I can do to help or if you have any questions – or if you help to run or know of any organisations which should be added to this list – please email me at tulip@tulipsiddiq.com


Useful links

Government Help for Households: https://helpforhouseholds.campaign.gov.uk/

Brent Council cost of living help is facilitated through the Brent Resident Support Fund (RSF), which is a discretionary support fund available to Brent residents who are in financial difficulties, for example struggling with food, utility bills and other household essentials. Find out more here.

Camden Council’s website has listed a range of options depending on the type of support you need. Find out more here.

Martin Lewis from Money Saving Expert has a cost of living help page here: https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/budgeting-debt-help/  

Citizens Advice: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/get-help-with-the-cost-of-living/  

Check what benefits you can get: You may be able to claim benefits or increase your current benefits if you are of working age and on a low income, sick or disabled, of state pension age and on a low income, a carer or responsible for children. Find out more here: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/benefits-introduction/what-benefits-can-i-get/

Get your benefits early: Most benefits can be paid early. This is a ‘short term benefit advance’. A small amount will be taken off future payments to pay it back – usually for 12 weeks. To ask for an advance, contact the DWP office that’s dealing with your benefit claim. You can find their contact details on any letter or email you’ve had from them. 


Energy and household bills

British Gas Energy Trust is an independent charitable trust which helps families struggling with money and energy debt. They can provide free support to make sure you’re getting the support and benefits you’re entitled to and run a direct access energy debt programme. For more information visit: www.britishgasenergytrust.org.uk

Energy Saving Trust work to help save money on household bills:  www.energysavingtrust.org.uk

Heat the Human, not the Home have tips on keeping yourself warm: www.moneysavingexpert.com/utilities/heat-the-human-not-the-home-save-energy


Food

Brent Food Bank: https://brent.foodbank.org.uk/get-help/

If you have not been referred to Brent Foodbank before, you can visit Brent Hubs who are based at libraries across Brent. Their advisors can provide support with benefits, housing, debt etc, as well as issue you a food bank voucher code if appropriate. For details of their drop-in service, just visit Brent Hubs

You can also contact the national Help Through Hardship line: 0808 208 2138 (free phone number 9am – 5pm)

Camden Food Bank: https://camden.foodbank.org.uk/

Please call 0300 330 1157 to speak to Camden Citizens Advice Bureau, a referral agency partner of Camden Foodbank, who will be able to issue you with a voucher if necessary.


Family Support

The Government page on Help for Families can be found here.

National Childbirth Trust: Provides free advice and guidance for expecting mothers or new mothers: https://www.nct.org.uk/

Hopscotch Women’s Centre offers advice and advocacy for women experiencing domestic abuse, and general benefits advice: visit https://hopscotchuk.org/ or call them on 020 7388 8198.

Healthy Start Scheme: If you’re more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4, you may be entitled to get help buy healthy food and milk. You’ll be sent a Healthy Start card with money on it that you can use in some UK shops to buy items such as: milk; fresh, frozen, and tinned fruit and vegetables; instant formula milk; Healthy Start vitamins. For more information visit: www.healthystart.nhs.uk

Sure Start Maternity Grant: A one-off payment of £500 to help towards the costs of having a child. You usually qualify if you are having your first child, or if you are expecting a multiple birth, and if you or your partner receive certain benefits. For more information visit: www.gov.uk/sure-start-maternity-grant

Tax Free Childcare: You can get up to £500 every 3 months (up to £2,000 a year) for each of your children to help with the costs of childcare. For every £8 you pay into this account, the government will pay in £2 to use to pay your provider. You can get Tax-Free Childcare at the same time as 30 hours free childcare if you’re eligible for both. For more information visit: www.gov.uk/tax-free-childcare


Bills and costs 

Broadband ‘social tariffs’. If you are on certain benefits, you may be entitled to cheaper broadband. Many companies offer these social tariffs, but they are not well advertised. For more information visit: www.moneysavingexpert.com/compare-broadband-deals/broadband-social-tariffs

Railcards. There are several different railcards available, they usually cut a third off the bill and most cost £30 a year. For more information visit: www.railcard.co.uk

Advice4Renters is a local organisation which offers support and legal advice to people living in private rented accommodation: https://adviceforrenters.org/get-support


Financial Advice

If you’re struggling with debt or with managing your finances, there are several local and national organisations who can provide a variety of free help, advice and support:

Brent Advice Matters: https://www.bam.org.uk/

Debt Free London: https://debtfree.london/  

StepChange: https://www.stepchange.org/

National Debtline: https://www.nationaldebtline.org/

Debt Advice Foundation: https://www.debtadvicefoundation.org/

The Government Cost of Living Support factsheet can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cost-of-living-support/cost-of-living-support-factsheet-26-may-2022

Turn2Us is a national charity providing practical help to people who are struggling financially. They have a Benefits Calculator, which takes less than 10 minutes to complete and it will tell you which means-tested benefits you may be entitled to, a Grant Search and a Helpline. For more information visit: www.turn2us.org.uk

Money Saving Expert can help with advice on making savings at www.moneysavingexpert.com

Step Change Debt Charity supports those struggling with debt. For more information visit: www.stepchange.org or call 0800 138 1111

MoneyHelper offers free support in managing your money. For more information visit: www.moneyhelper.org.uk or call 0800 011 3797


Mental Health Support

If you require urgent mental health support please call 116 123 to talk to Samaritans or email: jo@samaritans.org for a reply within 24 hours. They also offer non-urgent offer confidential support which can be found here: https://www.samaritans.org/

If you would prefer to get help via text, text “SHOUT” to 85258 to contact the Shout Crisis Text Line, or text “YM” if you’re under 19. You can see more information here: https://giveusashout.org/

If you’re under 19, you can also call 0800 1111 to talk to Childline. The number will not appear on your phone bill. Find more information here: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/

Mental Health Camden.  This website provides a search directory of many support services in Camden to make it easier to find the support that is right for you: https://www.mentalhealthcamden.co.uk/whats-available

Brent Council’s Website provides information about some support services and further advice that may be useful: https://www.brent.gov.uk/adult-social-care/health-and-wellbeing/promoting-mental-wellbeing

Beat are an eating disorder charity who can be contacted online at https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/ or you can call their helpline at 0808 801 0677

Mind provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. They also provide advice on how to cope during a crisis: https://www.mind.org.uk/need-urgent-help/what-can-i-do-to-help-myself-cope/

Youngs Minds are a UK wide mental health charity providing support for young people. Their website which also includes useful information for parents can be found here: https://www.youngminds.org.uk/

Climate and Environment Emergency: WWF Earth Hour

Nick Brown (Newcastle upon Tyne East)

Keuntungan Saat Memainkan Situs Judi Slot Online

Chris Leslie (Nottingham East)

Keuntungan Saat Memainkan Situs Judi Slot Online – Internet memiliki dampak luar biasa pada berbagai industri meskipun mungkin industri perjudian yang paling banyak mengalami perubahan. Perjudian online yang sederhana, dengan cepat menjadi industri multi-miliar dolar.

Ada sejumlah situs judi online yang menyediakan layanan hiburan dan perjudian kepada pengguna dari setiap bagian dunia. Di sini kita melihat manfaat utama yang bisa Anda dapatkan dari perjudian online.

Mari kita ulas bersama tentang keuntungan yang akan di dapatkan saat memainkan situs judi slot online ini yaitu;

Apa Saja Keuntungan Saat Memainkan Situs Judi Slot Online?

  • Kenyamanan

Faktor utama dalam pertumbuhan industri perjudian online adalah kenyamanan. Anda dapat memainkan game favorit anda kapan saja dan dari mana saja. akan tetapi masih banyak orang lebih suka bermain dari kenyamanan rumah mereka di mana mereka merasa paling santai.

Smartphone dan laptop memiliki dampak yang signifikan juga. Bahkan ada penelitian yang dilakukan tentang kapan pengguna paling suka berjudi online. Hasilnya tampaknya mengarah ke waktu sela seperti saat bepergian, menunggu teman, atau membuat janji.  dan juga meningkatkan popularitas karena banyak penjudi yang rajin bermain game saat istirahat di kantor.

  • Semua game di bawah satu atap

Meskipun kasino darat memiliki katalog permainan yang cukup luas, tidak ada yang mengalahkan variasi dan jumlah pilihan yang tersedia di kasino online. Pengguna bahkan dapat memanfaatkan tren teknologi terbaru dan berjudi di permainan dealer langsung.

Slot Online khas Inggris akan menawarkan hal itu dan jika Anda ingin pengalaman yang sepenuhnya mendalam, kami pasti akan merekomendasikan Anda untuk memeriksanya.

 

Pengguna dengan temperamen dan preferensi yang berbeda dapat berharap untuk menemukan sesuatu atau yang lain yang sesuai dengan gaya mereka. Sebagian katalog terdiri dari judul slot termasuk slot 3-gulungan dan 5-gulungan, dan pengguna tidak perlu khawatir kehabisan permainan untuk dicoba.

Tawaran Promosi

Saat Anda mengisi ulang, Anda pasti akan mendapatkan hadiah dan uang ekstra untuk dimainkan dalam hal bonus. Semakin banyak judul game yang Anda ingin mainkan, semakin banyak poin yang terakumulasi yang pada akhirnya mengarah pada lebih banyak hadiah dan peningkatan dalam uang mereka.

Penawaran lain juga tersedia di mana para pemain dapat mulai bermain tanpa harus menyetor satu sen pun.

  • Opsi Perbankan

Opsi perbankan yang digunakan platform kasino online semuanya benar-benar aman dan memungkinkan seseorang untuk mendanai akunnya dengan mudah. Ada berbagai metode yang dapat dilakukan dan pengguna dapat memilih metode yang paling cocok untuk mereka. Bahkan banyak yang memberikan penawaran tambahan saat menggunakan layanan ini.

  • Dapatkan Poin Hadiah

Pada setiap taruhan permainan meja atau mesin slot memungkinkan pengguna untuk mengumpulkan poin hadiah. Ini tercantum dalam akun pemain dan dapat tertukar dengan permainan, hadiah, atau manfaat lainnya.

Meskipun kasino tradisional juga memberikan poin hadiah, mereka biasanya membutuhkan waktu lebih lama untuk bertambah dengan platform online.

  • Pilih taruhan yang Anda inginkan

Platform kasino online memberi Anda kebebasan untuk bermain di level mana pun yang Anda inginkan. Di sisi lain, rumah kasino tradisional memiliki batasan ketat pada tingkat di mana pengguna dapat bermain terutama karena mereka harus mempertahankan pendirian mereka.

Di situs kasino online, seseorang dapat memulai dengan bermain secara gratis atau dengan taruhan minimum. Ini memungkinkan seseorang kesempatan untuk mengambilnya selangkah demi selangkah dan meningkatkannya secara progresif saat seseorang menjadi lebih nyaman, atau mendapatkan kemenangan beruntun.

Baca artikel lainnya di: Link Situs Judi Bola Terpercaya Alternatif, Solusi Paling Tepat Bermain

The post Keuntungan Saat Memainkan Situs Judi Slot Online appeared first on Chrisleslie.

Backbench Business Committee

Ian Mearns (Gateshead)

My article in House Magazine

Carolyn Harris, MP for Swansea East, stood up for the thousands of Menopause Warriors in Wales during the Welsh Grand Committee debate earlier this week as she discussed the work of the menopause revolution and how it is benefiting women across the nation. 

 

A key success of Carolyn Harris’ Private Member’s Bill last year was the formation of the Menopause Task Force, of which Carolyn is co-chair, which will be holding its inaugural meeting in the coming weeks.  

 

Through the Taskforce, Carolyn aims to totally transform menopause support and services for women right across Wales and the UK with three key aims- to improve diagnosis and treatment pathways; to ensure women have the understanding and support they need from doctors, employers and their families; and to develop the school curriculum so the next generation are better educated on the menopause. 

 

Carolyn has also been working closely with the Welsh Labour Government, who have put the menopause high on the political agenda, to make the  improvements in healthcare and education so that women in Wales will be able to access the support and services they need when it comes to menopause care.



Carolyn Harris, MP for Swansea East, said:

“2021 saw the menopause revolution really take off.  We have already achieved so much in breaking down the barriers and getting people talking about the menopause, putting the menopause high on the political agenda.

 

“In Wales, we are so lucky to be able to access HRT free of charge thanks to the Welsh Labour Government, but I’m looking forward to working with Welsh Government colleagues to make further improvements to menopause support and services to ensure women across Wales can always access the support and services they need.

 

“Our combined efforts across the Senedd and Westminster are helping us revolutionise menopause care throughout the UK to help keep women wonderful.  There should be no politics in women’s health, and we must work together cross-party and with the devolved governments to make a difference to women’s lives and achieve our common goals.”

Visit my Facebook page

Yvonne Fovargue (Makerfield)

Visit my Facebook page for upto date news on my work as your Member of Parliament.

New Hospital in Sutton Confirmed

Paul Scully (Sutton and Cheam)

I am delighted to write and tell you that local NHS leaders have confirmed plans for a new hospital to be built in Sutton and to upgrade facilities at St Helier. This represents a £500 MILLION plan that will not only build a brand new state of the art hospital near to the Royal Marsden by 2025, but ALSO invest AT LEAST £80 MILLION into upgrades at St Helier.

The new specialist emergency care hospital, just a few minutes from St Helier, would treat the sickest 15% of patients, those normally arriving by ambulance. This larger specialist team would be available 24 hours a day to diagnose what is wrong with patients more rapidly, start the best treatment faster, and help patients recover more quickly. St Helier and Epsom Hospitals will remain open 24/7, with updated and improved facilities, providing all the other services that they currently do.

My children were born at St. Helier so healthcare provision in Sutton has been an issue that is a very personal one to me. Ever since being a councillor in Carshalton, some 14 years ago, I have been campaigning for a solution that protects the future of St. Helier whilst ensuring that Sutton residents have access to the very best treatment in cutting edge modern healthcare facilities. I believe that this decision can finally put to rest the political arguments so that we can get on with doing what’s best for residents across the whole of the borough of Sutton.

With this plan, the refurbished St Helier Hospital is here to stay providing the majority of local health services, and the sickest patients will get state-of-the-art treatment in the brand-new specialist emergency hospital right here in our area.

You can find out more about the plans, including the answers to some frequently asked questions at the NHS’ website: www.improvinghealthcaretogether.org.uk. You can also contact them at hello@improvinghealthcaretogether.org.uk, or get in touch with me with any queries.

IMPORTANT QUESTIONS & ANSWERS ABOUT THESE PROPOSALS

Why is this being done?

To improve the care that we receive. As St Helier’s buildings continue to age over time, it’s necessary to upgrade our healthcare facilities to improve outcomes. Surviving illness and recovering quickly is the number one priority.

Is St Helier closing?

No, quite the opposite. St Helier is here to stay with a multi-million-pound improvement package.

Is a new hospital being built?

Yes. A new specialist emergency care hospital will be built in Sutton, in addition to improving St Helier hospital.

Is St Helier getting an upgrade?

Yes. At least £80 million of the funding promised will go towards improving the facilities at St Helier hospital.

Who developed these proposals?

For the first time, we have a plan that was developed by local clinicians, not national bureaucrats or politicians. Local healthcare professionals made the case for funding to deliver this improvement, which has been rewarded with a £500 million investment. Sutton Council also supported the proposals last year.

Will I have to travel outside my area for services now?

At the moment, if you have a stroke or heart attack you will be taken past St. Helier to be treated at St. George’s. This plan means that we will still be able to treat people within the local area, not moving more services away from Sutton.

Will we still use St Helier?

Yes. From 2025, Epsom hospital, St Helier hospital and the new hospital at Sutton will all have a 24/7 Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) (which already treats the vast majority of people going to St. Helier in an emergency). Under the plans, 85% of services will remain at St Helier. Both Epsom and St Helier hospitals will still have a 24/7 UTC.

Diagnostic tests, such as MRI, x-ray or ultrasound, the heart problem diagnosis unit, the dialysis unit, Croft Ward (which takes care of patients who are stable but not ready to leave hospital), the eye care unit, the gastroenterology unit, and so many more services are staying put at Epsom and St Helier hospitals.

What about bed numbers?

The NHS have calculated that they will need the same number of beds as they do now.

What about A&E?

Unlike previous plans, which saw A&E diverted away into Tooting, A&E is now staying right here in our Borough at the new hospital. Most of the time you will still use St Helier for matters requiring immediate medical attention like broken limbs or cuts. Major trauma cases needing a blue light ambulance transfer will be treated in Sutton at the new state-of-the-art hospital next to The Royal Marsden.

What about maternity services?

Maternity services have also been protected and kept locally. Post-natal and ante-natal care are staying put at Epsom and St Helier hospitals, and births will take place in the brand-new maternity unit at the new hospital in Sutton built to the very latest healthcare standards. Women need the very best care and facilities when giving birth, and the new plans will provide that.

Where will children services be provided?

Most children will continue to receive care and treatment in the same place as they do now. Care for children who need to stay in hospital overnight – as a result of a serious illness or complex problems – will be treated at the new specialist emergency care hospital. This includes children’s surgery.  

What will happen until the new hospital in Sutton is built?

All services will continue to be carried out at Epsom and St Helier hospitals until such time the new hospital in Sutton is ready for patients.

Where will the new hospital be built?

After consulting residents, patient groups and healthcare professionals, the decision was taken to build a brand-new specialist emergency care hospital in Sutton. This will be combined with the necessary infrastructure and transport links to ensure the site of the new hospital is accessible to all that need to use it.

For more facts, and to find out what this multi-million-pound government investment in our local NHS will mean for you and your family, visit the following website: www.improvinghealthcaretogether.org.uk/faq.

Reflecting on Defeat

Richard Burden (Birmingham, Northfield)

First of all, thank you to everyone who has sent such kind messages to me after last night’s result in Birmingham Northfield. Even though I never took this election – or any election – for granted, it is still a big blow to lose the seat I have represented for 27 years and which is […]

Compensation package for Waspi women

John Healey (Wentworth and Dearne)

Labour has pledged compensation packages for millions of women hit by state pension age rises imposed by the Tories.

Pay-outs of up to £31,000 will be made, with an average payment of £15,000.

The scheme will be delivered within Labour's first full five year term of government.

Payments will go to women born in the 1950s who had their state pension age hiked.

David Cameron's coalition government presided over a change in the law that increased the women's state pension age to 65 in November 2018 - followed by 66 in October 2020.

Labour will introduce a compensation scheme as rapidly as possible for the 3.7million women hit by the changes, which Cameron's Tory-Lib Dem government imposed in 2011.

It comes after Boris Johnson u-turned on his pledge to help those affected.

He dismissed the concerns of a woman who has lost out on her pension, telling her it’s “not possible” to right the huge wrong she and so many others have suffered.

The next Labour government will compensate women who were unfairly hit by the rise in the state pension age and give them the respect they deserve.

They were not able to prepare and have had to suffer serious financial consequences as a result.

We have a historic debt of honour to them.


Lisa reselected by Wigan Labour

Lisa Nandy (Wigan)

Lisa Nandy MP

Wigan Constituency Labour Party have reselected Lisa Nandy MP as their candidate for the next General Election.

At meetings held over the last fortnight, members in all of the branches that make up Wigan Labour Party voted overwhelmingly to reselect Lisa. All affiliated organisations, including Unite the Union, the Communication Workers’ Union, GMB, Unison and Usdaw, also voted to reselect.

Lisa said:

“I’m grateful to Labour members in Wigan for choosing to reselect me so overwhelmingly. Being the Member of Parliament for Wigan is the privilege of my life, and I couldn’t do it without the members who turn up year in, year out and in all weathers to campaign for the Labour Party. With a General Election looking likely, we will be out once again fighting for every vote and to put an end to the damage inflicted on Wigan by this reckless Conservative government.”

Wigan Constituency Labour Party said:

“We’re delighted to have reselected Lisa Nandy as our candidate for the next General Election. For 10 years Lisa has worked tirelessly to represent Wigan in Parliament, fighting for constituents hit hardest by this Conservative government’s brutal cuts and ensuring that Wigan’s voice is heard on the national stage. The overwhelming level of support Lisa received from local party members is testament to that work. We’re proud to have Lisa as our MP and we’re ready to fight and win the next General Election together.”

The post Lisa reselected by Wigan Labour first appeared on Lisa Nandy MP.

Two thirds of Wolverhampton pensioners lose free TV licence

Emma Reynolds (Wolverhampton North East)

A broken Conservative Party promise from the 2017 election will mean two thirds of Wolverhampton’s over 75s are set to lose out, after the BBC announced changes to eligibility for free TV licences.

From June 2020 only households with a pensioner in receipt of Pension Credit will be eligible for a free TV licence. This follows a government move for the BBC to take on responsibility for funding the £745m cost of the scheme.

In Wolverhampton, 11,360 pensioners across the city’s three constituencies – two thirds of all households currently eligible for a free TV licence – will no-longer be eligible.

Wolverhampton North East MP Emma Reynolds previously met pensioners who would be affected by changes to the scheme, and joined the other city MPs – Eleanor Smith and Pat McFadden – in signing a letter to Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright against any change.

On the announced changes, Emma said:

“At the last election the Conservative Party stood on a platform to keep free TV licences for the over 75s. Now, 11,000 Wolverhampton pensioners have been betrayed by a government which promised to keep them.

“Two thirds of Wolverhampton’s pensioners are to lose their free TV licence as a direct result of the government forcing the BBC to take on the cost. The £745m cost of the universal scheme is around a fifth of the BBC’s entire budget, and the government were warned the BBC could not take on this cost and keep the scheme in full. When Labour brought in free TV licences, it was government policy so the government rightly covered the cost.

“It is plain wrong that Boris Johnson is championing big tax cuts for the wealthy, while all but the poorest of pensioners now face having to pay for their TV licence. According to Age UK, 400,000 over 75s neither meet nor speak to family and friends every week. When I met with local pensioners, they told me how essential a TV is. A TV is often their only form of companionship, and the only way of knowing what is happening outside their home.”

The post Two thirds of Wolverhampton pensioners lose free TV licence appeared first on Emma Reynolds MP.

Stephen Metcalfe (South Basildon and East Thurrock)

This website is discontinued. Please visit my new website: StephenMetcalfe.org.uk 

MP meets South Downs farmers

Nick Herbert (Arundel and South Downs)

Arundel and South Downs MP Nick Herbert met South Downs farmers on Friday (19 January) to discuss the challenges they face as Britain leaves the EU and…

With Northern Ireland once again in politcial crisis and continuing divisions within unionism, we need to consider carefully the consequences, both for the Union itself and for efforts to create a shared future here.

On being a woman in politics

Alison Thewliss (Glasgow Central)

A few things have recently been rattling around in my head which concern women in politics; I've been trying to gather some ideas as to why there aren't more of us, and how I might encourage female candidates to come forward. At the same time, I noticed that the launch of the Counting Women In campaign, couldn't miss the outrageous attack on Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP, and I've been enjoying Winnie Ewing's very readable autobiography. I've also been out on the doorsteps for Ken Andrew in Hillhead.

All of these together really say: the culture of politics in the UK is what's at fault. Women don't think it's for them and just disengage. 


Now, obviously that's a generalisation. I'm a woman, and I'm very engaged in politics. I'm prepared to accept I'm a bit odd.


I chapped on a door the other week while canvassing. I had Alexander with me in the pram. A woman answered, I politely introduced myself and my purpose on her doorstep - she shook her head and told me she wasn't interested. I asked why. She firmly asserted that all politicians are just the same. I asked her if anyone from any political party had ever come to see her with a baby in a pram. She thought briefly, admitted that'd never happened, and sent me on my way. 

I'm not sure whether that experience tells me whether I ought to a) leave the wee man at home or b) work on my doorstep pizzaz, but I bet that woman had opinions on all kinds of things. I don't think she believes them to be particularly political - provision of care services, or bin collection, say - but in the end they're determined by politicians. I want women like her to tell me what she wants and why it matters. More than that, I want women who care about issues to join political parties to further that cause. There are all kinds of causes promoted within the SNP, and I will most likely welcome you in.


I'm sure I've said before that I've always felt welcomed as a woman in the SNP, and that remains true. I'm not sure how Labour men treat women in general (not great by some accounts, which appear to be no barrier to reselection), but they're certainly not great at giving SNP women the respect they are due.

I recalled hearing when Winnie's book came out that she had been bullied while at Westminster. The Scotsman's 2007 interview put it thus:

As the lone SNP member in the Commons - at best an intimidating place for an inexperienced politician - she found herself without friends, without party colleagues, without any supporting structures. She was completely alone. She was hundreds of miles from her husband and her children in an excessively macho and very hostile environment. "I was treated as the enemy, I was shunned and despised. It's a peculiar experience to suddenly find yourself hated. At times I did feel terribly lonely, close to despair." 

Reading the autobiography, you really get a vivid picture of the pressure Winnie Ewing was under as an MP on her own. Her every action was scrutinised; if she didn't attend a debate, the other parties would ensure it got in the papers. The nuances of what said were taken apart. She was under political and personal attack from all sides and, even more sinister, stalked by another MP. Interventions by others had some impact, but it must have been a great emotional strain.

What I didn't know was that when Winnie was appointed as an MEP (pre-democratic elections to Europe), the bad behaviour of two particular Labour bullies continued in the European Parliament when she was alone again, deliberately working to ridicule and undermine her for over a year. By the account in the autobiography, this only ended when the President of the Parliament intervened, threatening to have them withdrawn as being "not fit to represent their country and Parliament in Europe".


You might think that, around forty years later, a female SNP MP might expect some kind of change to have occurred in attitudes, as with wider society. Women are accepted in a range of jobs, universities are gaining majorities of female students, there are innumerable opportunities and directions for careers. And then, there's Ian Davidson MP.

Eilidh has written a revealing article in the Scotland on Sunday - I'd urge you to read the full article, but I think this small quote does illustrate the point perfectly:

"It does not matter that all I had done was disagree with the committee. In fact what inspired Mr Davidson’s remark is utterly irrelevant. There is no action, no misbehaviour that justifies the threat or act of “a doing”. We hear too often of women being told they were “asking for it” in justification for intimidation or violence. I never expected to hear that from an MP in Parliament.

But this is not simply an issue of aggression towards woman; it’s about a culture of intimidation and bullying affecting men and women that seems to flourish with impunity in the Westminster world."

The tragedy is that it's primarily through this Westminster lens that the viewing population sees politics and politicians. They see argument, they see confrontation; they see crowds of boorish suits moaning a weary "hear hear". And they switch off. They say "that's not for me".

They don't see a politician arguing the case with a housing association, trying to help a vulnerable tenant. They don't see someone working on a committee, trying to improve a policy that will help improve children's health. They don't see the joy that is presenting prizes to year groups of school students, with the hope that you can encourage them in that tiny second as you shake their hand. They don't know what a privilege it is to be invited into so many lives and homes, to meet with groups and organisations and offer what help you can.

The work of politics should never be that yah boo nonsense that men excel at and so many women hate. More women should be in politics for the fantastic difference they can make every day.


Made by @davorg / Last built: Saturday 24 September 2022 21:29