In the constituency
Since my last update my office has opened 892 new cases, and we continue to see a huge number of people contacting me across a wide range of issues as the Covid-19 Coronavirus crisis continues.
Of these, 255 were casework, and the rest were policy and campaign cases. Very large numbers of constituents have written to me regarding the Black Lives Matter campaign, deeply troubled by President Trump’s handling of the protests in the US in response to the devastating murder of George Floyd, and calling on this Government to end UK exports of riot gear such as tear gas and rubber bullets to the US. I have received many emails calling for justice for Ms Belly Mujinga. Many constituents have raised their dissatisfaction with the lack of BAME content in UK school’s curriculum, and the lack of recommendations within the Government’s report on the effects of Covid-19 on BAME individuals.
A huge number of constituents wrote to share their anger at Dominic Cummings and the failure of the Prime Minister in allowing him to keep his job despite public outrage and calls for Dominic Cummings to be sacked, or to resign.
The reopening of schools also concerned a great deal of constituents, who felt that the science did not demonstrate it was safe to do so.
Constituents have also been hugely concerned over the Agriculture Bill leaving open reductions in standards for farm animals and imports, and they asked for my support to vote for the amendments, which to my great disappointed didn’t receive the votes required to pass through.
Constituents have also written on the following topics, amongst others: calling on the Government to impose sanctions on proposed Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank; to protect the NHS in any UK/US trade deals; to attach conditions to airline bailouts; for zoos to reopen; many have written about their concerns about the lack of progress in the EU negotiations and the impact of leaving the EU whilst we are dealing with the impact of the health pandemic; and the Trussell Trust – provider of foodbanks – calls for a Coronavirus Emergency Income Support Scheme.
I am pleased to have resumed surgeries, with constituents able to book in between 3-5pm on Fridays via Zoom. Find out more about booking an appointment here.
After the ludicrous scenes witnessed with last week’s return to Westminster, with MPs queuing at length to vote, and where myself and other MPs who could not attend due to self-shielding or caring responsibilities were prevented from contributing, I am relieved that I will be able to continue to participate in parliamentary proceedings and represent my constituents virtually via Zoom.
MPs continue to join forces to put pressure on the Government on a range of issues linked to the Covid-19 crisis and other key issues, including last week co-signing a letter from Dawn Butler MP to the Government calling for an immediate suspension of all export licences to the USA that are linked to riot related items and signed the Early Day Motion #520 with the same call to action. I also signed a letter from Sarah Olney MP urging Ministers to renew guidelines and urgently upscale PPE for all transport workers. I signed a letter to the Chancellor calling on him to continue the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme and was pleased to see this was extended. I also added my name to those signing a letter to the Secretary of State for Education voicing concerns for the reopening of schools.
I have raised written questions regarding when applying to the DVLA for a provisional licence will resume and regarding the effect of Universal Credit on childcare payments.
I made the following representations recorded on the Hansard:
6th May 2020 – HOC Debate: Census – Sikh ethnicity census tick box
12th May 2020 – HOC Debate: Covid-19 Response – Government grants for small business
18th May 2020- HOC Debate: Covid-19 Response – Schools Reopening
Please keep safe during these uncertain times and please contact my office if we can offer you any assistance.