HomeAbout GeorgeWorking for youLocal informationHelp and adviceExpensesContact me
     
  Working for you

2017 Archive


You can see earlier press appearances and speeches here:
2007
| 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011
I 2012 I 2013 I 2014 I 2015 I 2016 I 2017 I 2018

View the Parliamentary achive here:
2007
| 2008 | 2009 | 2010


Breast Cancer Care: Moving Forward
18 December 2017
I recently met with Breast Cancer Care to support the launch of their new report, ‘Moving Forward: Supporting people to live well with and beyond breast cancer’, calling for people to receive the support they need to live well beyond breast cancer.
The event highlighted how the charity’s flagship service, Moving Forward, helps people with breast cancer adjust to life after finishing hospital treatment and manage any long-term side effects, easing the strain on the NHS.
The report found Breast Cancer Care’s support service improves the quality of life for people attending, according to the specialist EQ-5D metric. The report also revealed the service provides economic value to the NHS and is a ready-made solution to support the health service to deliver cancer strategies across the UK.
For more information and to view the report, please click here.

EU (Withdrawal) Bill - Animal Welfare
12 December 2017
Please click here to read a response from the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, about the recognition of animals as sentient beings in UK law after the UK leaves the EU.

Disability Equality Training
12 December 2017
Please click here to read a response from the Secretary of State for Transport, the Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP, about statutory guidance requiring all taxi and minicab drivers to undertake disability equality training.

Parliamentary scrutiny of future UK trade agreements
11 December 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Rt Hon Liam Fox MP about parliamentary scrutiny of future UK trade agreements

Environment Agency Consultation
7 December 2017
I recently received a letter from the Environment Agency regarding a consultation they have launched into fees they charge for permits.
The consultation is called a Strategic Review of Charges and will run until 12th January 2017.
You can view a copy of the letter, which includes further details, by clicking here.

Premier League Stars
6 December 2017
I recently attended an event in Parliament focused on the Premier League’s national primary school programme, ‘Premier League Primary Stars’.
Premier League Primary Stars is open to all primary schools across England and Wales, where they can access completely free teaching resource packs covering PE, English, Maths and PSHE for children aged 5-11. Real life examples from football provide lesson content, videos and fun activities to enhance children’s understanding and interest across the curriculum. Thirty Two schools in my constituency have already signed up.
To register and find out more information, please click here.

Big Lottery Fund
5 December 2017
I recently met with the Big Lottery Fund to discuss their work in Knowsley and plans for the future.
The Big Lottery Fund distributes 40% of National Lottery good causes funding, awarding over £700 million to communities across the UK last year.
Anyone looking for funding for a community project should consider applying for the following grant programmes:
National Lottery Awards for All offers funding of up to £10,000 to support what matters to people and communities. If you are a voluntary or community organisation, a school or a statutory body you can apply for funding.
Reaching Communities provides funding between £10,000 and £500,000 for voluntary or community groups. The most important thing when applying for funding is focusing on your ideas to make positive changes in your community.
To apply, please contact the Big Advice Line on 0345 410 2030. Additional guidance is available here and you can register your interest to attend a live online funding workshop, here. You can also find out more about other sources of Lottery Good Cause funding, including grants for arts, heritage and sports projects, here.

Leonard Cheshire Disability
1 December 2017
I recently joined the UK based Leonard Cheshire Disability charity in parliament to mark the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development pledges to “leave no one behind” yet a recent report by Leonard Cheshire and the United Nations Girls Education Initiative (UNGEI) revealed that only 10% of children with disabilities in developing countries go to school.
Leonard Cheshire Disability runs a number of programmes aimed at improving access to inclusive education for disabled children, particularly girls, and employment opportunities for disabled people in 13 countries across Africa and Asia.
You can find out more by visiting www.leonardcheshire.org/international.

Cystic Fibrosis
1 December 2017
I am backing an ongoing campaign by the Cystic Fibrosis Trust to ensure access to precision medicines in the UK.
One such drug is Orkambi, a precision medicine that 40 per cent of people with Cystic Fibrosis in the UK could benefit from. While conventional Cystic Fibrosis treatments target the symptoms, precision medicines tackle the underlying genetic mutations which cause the condition. Orkambi is not a cure, but it has been found to slow decline in lung function – the most common cause of death for people with cystic fibrosis. It has also been shown to reduce pulmonary exacerbations requiring hospitalisation by up to 61 per cent.
Orkambi received its European license in November 2015, and in June the following year the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recognised Orkambi as an important treatment. They did not recommend the drug, though, on grounds of cost-effectiveness and a lack of long-term data.
For more information, please visit www.cysticfibrosis.org.uk

Which? Broadband advice
1 December 2017
If you are experiencing issues with your broadband connection, you may find it helpful to check out Which? free speed checker which will allow you to find out what broadband speed you are actually getting. If you are unhappy with your broadband speed, you can also use their broadband complaint tool to quickly make a formal complaint to your provider or read Which? tips on ways to speed up slow connections.

Keep Me Posted
30 November 2017
I am supporting the ‘Keep Me Posted’ campaign, which calls for consumers to have the right to choose, without disadvantage, how they are contacted by banks, utility companies and other service providers.
Over 100 organisations have pledged their support in ensuring that consumers retain the right to receive paper statements without penalties.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

Lung Cancer Variation
30 November 2017
I recently attended a parliamentary event on lung cancer variation, hosted by The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation and MSD.
Despite improvements in survival and incidence rates, people with lung cancer still face huge inequalities when accessing lung cancer treatments and services, as a result of their age, socio-economic status or where they live.
You can find out more by clicking here.

Zaghari-Ratcliffe & Foroughi
29 November 2017
Please click here to read a response from Alistair Burt, Minister of State for the Middle East and North Africa, regarding Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe and Mr Kamal Foroughi who are detained in Iran.

Giving Tuesday
29 November 2017
I recently attended an event in Parliament, hosted by the Charities Aid Foundation, to celebrate Giving Tuesday.
The campaign encourages people to do 'good stuff’ for charity, such as bake, donate or Tweet in support of a favourite charity. Although Giving Tuesday has passed, you can still find out more about the campign and ways to support your favourite charities by clicking here.

Public Sector Pay
24 November 2017
A number of constituents have been in touch with me about public sector pay. In September, I raised my constituents’ concerns with HM Treasury. Please click here to read the response from Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury.
I have also contacted Unison to offer my support for their ‘Pay Up Now!’ campaign, and have noted the Westminster Hall debate on 4th December 2017 in my diary and will do my best to attend. In addition, I have added my support to the Royal College of Nursing’s Scrap the Cap! campaign.
Please be assured that I strongly support the move towards an increase in public sector pay beyond the 1% cap that has been in force in the recent past. It is, for me, both a matter of fairness towards those who work in our public services and, also, a practical issue of being able to recruit and retain staff. As you will be aware, there is solid evidence of hardship experienced on the part of public sector workers and of unfilled posts.

Lloyds Bank Foundation
21 November 2017
I recently attended a Parliamentary Reception, hosted by the Lloyds Bank Foundation, where I met with local charities who have benefited from the Foundation's support.
Over the last 30 years the Foundation has donated £600 million to charities across the UK. If you think your charity could be eligible for support please click here.

Early Intervention for Eating Disorders
20 November 2017
I am supporting Beat’s campaign calling on the Government to encourage more people with eating disorders to seek help as soon as possible, and for more funds to be made available nationwide so that everyone can get the treatment they need once they have been referred to mental health services.
Beat have recently published new research highlighting the impact of delayed treatment for eating disorder sufferers and their families. The report, entitled ‘Delaying for years, denied for months’, found that, on average, it takes sufferers over 18 months to realise they have an eating disorder and over a year following this before they seek help. The research also found an average wait of six months between sufferers first visiting a GP and receiving treatment. Successfully treating anorexia becomes harder after three years, therefore, this wait means that many people are seeing help when their illness is still highly treatable, but not receiving it until later, when the likely outcome is more negative.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

Improve Social Care
15 November 2017
I recently met social care users being let down by the care system, as part of The Care and Support Alliance campaign to improve the social care system.
Currently more than 1.2 million older and disabled people do not get the care they need. Social care is a lifeline for the many older and disabled people who rely on care for support with everyday tasks such as washing and cooking. Yet despite more of us needing it, 50% fewer people receive care now than in 2010.
The Government has said it plans to consult on plans to fix the social care system ‘once and for all’. The Care and Support Alliance are calling for the consultation to be published as soon as possible, setting out a sustainable solution for funding the whole system.
You can find out more about the work the Care and Support Alliance do by clicking here, and sign their petition, calling on the Government to bring forward social care proposals by early 2018, by clicking here.

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill
15 November 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill.
I have already added my name to some fifty amendments and New Clauses to the Bill. If you have not had the opportunity to study the Bill and associated amendments and New Clauses, you can do so here.
There are currently 184 pages of amendments and New Clauses, however, at this point I do not know which New Clauses and amendments will be selected by the Speaker.
You can follow the progress of the Bill here and see how I vote here.

Ring-fence mental health spend
10 November 2017
Luciana Berger MP, Shadow Minister for Mental Health, is calling on the Chancellor to ring-fence mental health spend in his Autumn Budget. The government has announced additional funding for mental health but is only a fraction of what mental health services need to meet growing demands. Across England, for the second year in a row, over half of Clinical Commissioning Groups – the bodies that decide how money is spent locally - say they plan to reduce the proportion of their budget spend on mental health. This is unacceptable. The money needed to transform mental health services and save lives is just not reaching the front line. Waiting times are too long, people are not receiving the best care in the community and people are having to travel too far for in-patient services.
Please sign this petition today to urge the Chancellor to ring-fence mental health spending on November 22nd 2017.

Public Sector Pay - HM Treasury response
7 November 2017
Please click here to read a response from Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, concerning public sector pay.

Neonicotinoids
1 November 2017
Please click here to read a response from Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, concerning neonicotinoids.

British Stammering Association - Merseyside Open Day
1 November 2017
The British Stammering Association are hosting an Open Day in Liverpool on Saturday 11th November.
The event will take place at the Quaker Meeting House on School Lane from 10.30am, and will be an opportunity to meet other people who stammer, take part in workshops and listen to guest speakers.
You can reserve a place and find out more information about the event by clicking here.

Finance Bill 2017-19
31 October 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about upcoming votes of the Finance Bill. I chaired the Finance Bill at the Committee Stage. This means that, in accordance with the protocol of the House, I am not permitted to vote at any stage of the proceedings on the legislation. Nor am I able to make further public comment upon the progress of the legislation, the content of the Bill or proposed amendments as I am required to maintain strict impartiality.

Stem Cell Transplants
30 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, concerning stem cell transplants.

Macmillan Cancer Support
30 October 2017
I recently showed my support for Macmillan Cancer Support on Wednesday 18 October, by attending a World’s Biggest Coffee Morning event in Parliament.
The occasion marked the launch of a new report, ‘Am I Meant To Be Okay Now?: Stories of Life After Treatment’, which focuses on the challenges people face after cancer treatment ends.
Having raised over £29.5 million in 2016, the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is Macmillan’s biggest fundraising event of the year – and there is still time to get involved. For further information, please visit www.macmillan.org.uk/coffee.

Supported Housing and Local Housing Allowance
27 October 2017
Conservative housing benefit cuts, due to take effect in April 2019, risk closing thousands of supported housing schemes including homelessness hostels, sheltered housing, specialist accommodation for former members of the armed forces and refuges for victims of domestic violence. Although these cuts have not yet come into force, the threat of these changes has already led to an 85% drop in new supported housing development.
This is part of a wider attack on the housing safety net by this government, including slashing funding for new affordable homes, withdrawing housing benefit for under-21s and reductions in local housing allowance for private tenants which are making large swathes of the country unaffordable for low income households. Labour is calling on the government to halt these cuts and safeguard funding for this vital accommodation for the long term, building on the recommendations of a cross-party joint select committee report.
I recently took part in a debate on Supported Housing, a transcript of which you can view here. I also raised my concerns about the impact of freezing Local Housing Allowance with HM Treasury, and received a response from Elizabeth Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, which you can view here.

Capped Expenditure Process
24 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, concerning the Capped Expenditure Process.

Stay Warm this Winter
18 October 2017
Research undertaken by Atomik, on behalf of British Gas, indicates that many people have not taken action to ensure their homes are ready for winter.
There are a number of practical steps that can be taken to ensure you are prepared. You can click here to view ten simple tricks which will help keep you warm this winter, published by British Gas.

Home Carbon Emissions
16 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, concerning carbon emissions from homes.

Home Carbon Challenge
16 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from Claire Perry, Minister of State for Climate Change and Industry, concerning the World Wildlife Fund Home Carbon Challenge.

Yemen & Saudi Arabia
16 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from Alistair Burt, Minister of State for the Middle East and North Africa, concerning Yemen and Saudi Arabia.

PIP
16 October 2017
Please click here to read a response from David Gauke, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, concerning Personal Independence Payments.

Charity Aid Foundation
29 September 2017
I recently attended the Charities Aid Foundation’s ‘soft power station’ at the Labour Party Conference, to discuss the role that the UK’s soft power can have in amplifying global civil society.
CAF recently published a report which explores the potential impact that the UK Government could generate by investing in civil society infrastructure across the world as part of our international development work.
Their report highlighted that if people in the growing global middle class – set to increase by 2.4 billion by 2030 - give 0.5% of their income to charity it could generate $319 billion in donations towards civil society organisations annually.
However, the potential for unlocking this new source of generosity is hampered by low levels of giving in emerging economies, a history of public distrust of charities and other barriers that prevent the kind of thriving civil society that contributes so much to life in the UK. We can overcome these barriers by putting in place the infrastructure needed to empower people to use their resources to create change.
For more information about the work of the Charities Aid Foundation, please visit www.cafonline.org.

Guide Dogs UK - Disability Equality Traning
29 September 2017
I am supporting Guide Dogs UK call for all taxi and minicab drivers to undertake disability equality training, so they understand the rights and needs of disabled passengers and feel confident to offer assistance.
The campaign is supported by more than 30 organisations, including trade bodies, local government representatives and disability groups.
You can find out more about the work Guide Dogs UK do by clicking here.

Ivory Trade
27 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, concerning the trade of ivory.

Gamebird Welfare
27 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, concerning the rearing of gamebirds in cages.

'Wear it Pink'
26 September 2017
I am supporting Breast Cancer Now’s flagship fundraiser, 'Wear it Pink', which will see thousands of people across the UK wearing pink on Friday 20th October to raise vital funds for breast cancer research.
The event, which takes place during October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, is in its 16th year and has raised over £30 million to date for Breast Cancer Now’s life-saving research.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

#NHSTakeback
22 September 2017
I am supporting the 'We Own It - #NHS Takeback' campaign to keep the NHS in public ownership.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

Executive Remuneration
20 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Margot James, Minister for Small Business, Consumers & Corporate Responsibility, concerning executive remuneration.
Labour’s 2017 Manifesto included commitments to reduce pay inequality through legislation, by introducing an "excessive pay levy" on companies with high numbers of staff on high pay, and a 20:1 limit on the gap between the lowest and highest paid workers in companies given Government contracts.

Grenfell Tower
19 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Alok Sharma, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, concerning the Grenfell Tower fire.

Protect the Rohingyas
18 September 2017
I am a signatory to a campaign launched by the Elie Wiesel Network, calling for the protection of the Rohingyas.
The Rohingyas are one of the largest stateless people of the world. Today, the Muslim Rohingyas of Myanmar are the victims of violent abuses by the army, with more than 300,000 children, women and men seeking refuge, primarily in Bangladesh.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

Holocaust Memorial Day 2018
18 September 2017
I recently attended the launch of Holocaust Memorial Day 2018, where I met Dr Martin Stern who survived the Holocaust as a child.
Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) is commemorated each year on 27 January, which is the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death and concentration camp. HMD provides an opportunity for everyone to learn lessons from the Holocaust, Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur. HMD asks people to apply these lessons to the present day to create a safer, better future. Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT) promotes and supports HMD activities across the UK. Each year HMDT selects a theme around which HMD activities can focus. The theme for 2018 is The Power of Words.
You can find out more about HMDT by clicking here.

European Union (Withdrawal) Bill
14 September 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the recent Second Reading debate for the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill. I did speak in the debate and my views can be found here. At the conclusion of the debate, I voted for the opposition amendment.

Opposition Day Debate – Public Sector Pay Cap
14 September 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the Opposition Day debate on the public sector pay cap.
The opposition motion which was subject of the vote was put in motion. At the conclusion, the Government did not oppose Labour’s motion and, consequently, it was passed without a vote. They did so because, had it been put to a vote, they would have lost it as the Democratic Unionist Pary had indicated that they would support Labour’s motion. I am not at this stage certain what impact this will have. The Government’s so-called lifting of the cap earlier in the week, for example, was the most grudging and limited climb down imaginable.
The status of our Labour motion in parliamentary terms is advisory, although I personally think that it has a moral force which the Government should accept. Please be assured of my continuing support on this important matter.

Migration and Resettlement of Refugees
13 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Brandon Lewis, Minister of State for Immigration, concerning the migration crisis and resettlement of refugees.

Environmental Protection
13 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, concerning environmental protection.

Beer Duty and Business Rates
13 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Andrew Jones, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, concerning beer duty and business rates.

Rail Improvements in the North
13 September 2017
Please click here to read a response from Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for Transport, concerning rail improvements in the North.

Leaseholders
5 September 2017
Please click here to read the response from Alok Sharma MP, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, regarding existing leaseholders and their onerous lease terms.
There is currently an Government consultation looking at tackling unfair practices in the leasehold market. This consultation is looking for views on prohibiting the sale of new build leasehold houses, limiting ground rents and protecting leaseholders from possession orders. This consultation closes at 11:45pm on 19 September 2017. You can respond online or by emailing LeaseholdHousesConsultation@communities.gsi.gov.uk

Organ Donation Week in Knowsley
5 September 2017
I proudly support Organ Donation Week and appeal for my constituents to talk about organ donation.
28483 people in Knowsley are on the NHS Organ Donor Register but hundreds of lifesaving transplants are being missed around the country every year because families don’t know what their relative wanted.
I’m proud to support this lifesaving appeal and it’s really easy for everyone to take part – just have a chat. That chat might be the next time you sit down for a meal, when you are shopping or working, or when you are just driving in the car. If you want to be a donor, your family’s agreement is still needed for donation to go ahead, even if you are on the NHS Organ Donor Register.
Families who agree to donate say it helps with their grief and that they feel enormous sense of pride at knowing their relative gave others the chance of a new beginning.
Fiona Loud, Policy Director of Kidney Care UK, commented: “At least one person dies every single day whilst waiting for a kidney transplant and of the 7 people on the waiting list in Knowsley around 90% of them are waiting for a kidney. You are more likely to need a transplant than to be a donor so please, this Organ Donation Week, just take a few minutes to have a think about what you would do if you needed a transplant, and have that life-saving chat with your family so they know your wishes.”
To find out more about Organ Donation, click here.

Acid Attacks - NHS Guidance
1 September 2017
NHS England has launched new guidance and information for the public on acid attacks.
A new page has been created on the NHS Choices website, containing information on what to do as a victim or a bystander immediately following an attack with a corrosive substance, as well as how the NHS treats injuries caused as a result. The website can be viewed here.
In addition, NHS England has also endorsed an infographic produced by burns specialists giving three clear and memorable actions to take – Report, Remove, Rinse. The infographic can be viewed here.

Grenfell Tower Fire – Aspire blog
1 September 2017
Aspire is a national charity that provides practical help to people who have been paralysed by Spinal Cord Injury. Aspire is very concerned that the public inquiry should not overlook the experience of disabled occupants affected by the Grenfell Tower fire and the implications for new and existing buildings this reveals.They have published a blog to highlight their concerns.

Puppy smuggling
30 August 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Secretary of State for Envrionment, Food & Rural Affairs, the Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, about puppy imports.

Torture and asylum: Home Affairs Committee
29 August 2017
Please click here to read the response from Yvette Cooper, Chair of the Home Affairs Committee, about the way that the Home Office handles expert medical evidence in asylum claims.

People's Postcode Lottery
21 August 2017
Applications for the latest round of funding from the People's Postcode Lottery are now open and will close on the 28th August.
Charities and community groups are eligible to apply for the grants of between £500 and £20,000.
Over 400 projects were awarded with grants in the last funding round, with previously funded projects ranging from sports clubs, to mental health groups and wildlife conservation charities.
For more information on how to apply for funding, please visit the Trusts’ websites:
www.postcodetrust.org.uk
www.postcodelocaltrust.org.uk
www.postcodecommunitytrust.org.uk

Mersey Gateway and Silver Jubilee Bridge
26 July 2017
Work started on the Mersey Gateway Project on 7th May 2014. In autumn 2017 a new six lane toll bridge over the River Mersey, between the towns of Runcorn and Widnes, will open to relieve the Silver Jubilee Bridge and reduce journey times.
Both the new Mersey Gateway Bridge and the Silver Jubilee Bridge will be tolled, but they will be free for eligible Halton residents to cross. It is unfair that the bridges will be free to use for Halton residents but not for residents of Cheshire West and Chester, Warrington and Merseyside.
The proposed cost of the tolls is unaffordable and will cause many residents, not just those living in Knowsley, to seek employment elsewhere. I am calling on the Government to extend the free toll scheme to residents of Cheshire West and Chester, Warrington and Merseyside.
In light of this, I tabled Early Day Motion 171 Mersey Gateway and Jubilee Bridge, signed by many local MPs.
The communications union (CWU) have created a petition titled ‘Removal of Mersey gateway toll within the Northwest area’ and if you support the campaign, I would encourage you add your name to this petition and/or share it on social media.
To find out more about the proposed tolls, please click here.

Cancer Research UK - Beat Cancer Sooner
18 July 2017
I recently attended an event in Parliament, held by Cancer Research UK, to ensure cancer is kept at the top of the new Parliament’s agenda. Over the course of this parliament, two million people will be diagnosed with cancer across the UK. In Knowsley alone there are around 920 cancer cases per year. Survival in the UK has doubled in the last 40 years, but cancer survival in the UK is still lagging behind other countries and too many cancers are diagnosed at an advanced stage, when they are harder to treat successfully.
You can find out more about the work Cancer Research UK do by clicking here.

Support Musicians Working in the EU
11 July 2017
I am supporting the Musicians Union campaign to ensure musicians are able to travel easily across Europe post-Brexit for touring and performing with minimum administrative burdens.
Musicians are very concerned that the Brexit process may lead to the introduction of individual member state work permits and/or visas for British musicians touring and working across Europe. Most professional musicians and performers rely on touring and travelling for their careers and livelihoods, and gigs are often organised at short notice. As some performers can be working in several different European countries over the course of a few days, the possible introduction of work permissions and/or visas for British musicians touring and working in Europe could be extremely detrimental.
You can find out more about the campaign by clicking here.

Which? Fixing Bad Broadband campaign
11 July 2017
I am supporting Which? Fixing Bad Broadband Campaign. Which? want to put consumers in control of their broadband. Their Fix Bad Broadband campaign will give you the tools you need to check your actual broadband speeds, complain to your provider if you’re not getting the service you are paying for, improve your home setup and switch broadband providers. If you’re frustrated by a slow connection, you may find Which? tips helpful. If you are not getting the broadband that you think you should be, you can use Which? Broadband Complaint Tool.

Updated - Grenfell Tower fire
10 July 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the recent catastrophic fire in Grenfell Tower Block.
It is vital that we get to the bottom of how this fire happened, hold those responsible to account, and do what is needed to make sure it does not happen again. Labour in Government acted to require the fitting of sprinklers on new high-rise buildings. We also launched a new fire safety protocol in 2007 and updated guidance in 2008, but it’s clear now that more needs to be done. More recently, as part of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fire Safety, I have been involved in raising the issues of building regulations and the need for sprinkler systems with the Government. Unfortunately – tragically – our warnings were ignored.
Please be assured that, alongside Labour colleagues, I will be pressing Government Ministers hard on the following areas:
- to ensure those who are affected by the fire are given the support they need including full support and local rehousing, now and in the years ahead;
- to ensure that there is adequate opportunity for Parliament to hold the Government to account and for MPs to have their questions answered as soon as possible;
- to ensure Ministers answer questions about why the findings of previous inquiries into high-rise fires were not acted upon;
- to ensure that a report with emerging findings is completed by the summer and before the conclusion of the full public inquiry, allowing swift measures to be taken where necessary to reassure residents in other high-rise residential buildings who will now have concerns; and
- to ensure that the public inquiry is set up in the right way so it gets to the bottom of what went wrong at Grenfell Tower, holds those responsible to account, and makes sure a tragedy of this sort is never repeated.
Jeremy Corbyn wrote to the Prime Minister on Friday 16th June to press these issues; you can read his letter here.
I have written to both the Housing Minister and Home Secretary to raise constituents' concerns about the Grenfell Tower fire and will post copies of any substantive responses that I receive on my website.

'Women at War 100'
26 April 2017
On Friday 7th July 2017, the Royal British Legion will mark the centenary of the formal recognition of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) by holding a Drumhead Ceremony and Reception at The National Memorial Arboretum.
Women who have served the Crown on military operation or in uniform can apply to attend the Drumhead Ceremony by clicking here. Alternatively, the ceremony will be shown on a screen at the National Memorial Arboretum. The Arboretum is open to the public from 9am-5pm and includes more than 300 thought-provoking memorials.
If you have any queries, please email women100@britishlegion.org.uk or phone 020 3053 7216.

'Time to talk about NHS pay' campaign email
20 April 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, Secretary of State for Health, regarding NHS pay.

'New two-child limit cuts essential support for children' campaign email
18 April 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Rt Hon Damian Green MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, regarding the Government policy to limit support through Tax Credits and Universal Credit to two children.

Finance (No.2) Bill 2017
18 April 2017
I have been asked to chair the Committee Stage of this Bill which will be discussed by a Committee of the whole House. This means that, in accordance with the protocol of the House, I am not permitted to vote at any stage of the proceedings on the legislation. Nor am I able to make further public comment upon the progress of the legislation, the content of the Bill or proposed amendments as I am required to maintain strict impartiality.

UK Ban on neonicotinoids
5 April 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the current UK ban on neonicotinoids. I have written to Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs to ask for an update and will post a copy of any substantive response that I receive on my website.

Action Aid's campaign against UK tax havens
3 April 2017
Please click here to read the response from Jane Ellison MP, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, about the international tax system.

Proposed changes to Personal Independence Payments - DWP response
30 March 2017
Please click here to read the response from The Rt Hon Damian Green MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, regarding Personal Independence Payments.

Unaccompanied Refugee Children
14 March 2017
Please click here to a read a response from Robert Goodwill MP, Minister of State for Immigration, concerning UK support for unaccompanied refugee children.

'A full ban on microbeads' campaign emails
13 March 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom, Secretary of State for the Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs about microbeads and their impact on the environment.

'Please help make the UK a global leader on refugee rights' campaign email
13 March 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about the rights of refugees and displaced people fleeing war and insecurity. I have written to the Secretary of State and will post a copy of any substantive response that I receive on my website.

Children's Funeral Fund
10 March 2017
Please click here to read a response from Caroline Nokes MP, Minister for Welfare Delivery, concerning the creation of a Children's Funeral Fund.

Insurance Premium Tax (IPT)
8 March 2017
Please click here to read the response from Jane Ellison, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, regarding insurance premium tax rises.

Beat’s Eating Awareness Disorder Week
6 March 2017
I recently attended the launch of Beat’s Eating Awareness Disorder Week in Parliament.
I was delighted to support Beat in their Eating Awareness Disorder Week. It is vital that we raise awareness of eating disorders and ensure that adequate treatment is available for everyone who needs it. Beat carries out crucial work, especially by continually highlighting the importance of spotting the first signs of eating disorders to ensure people access the help they need very early on. Visit www.b-eat.co.uk for information about eating disorders, message boards and online support groups. Use HelpFinder.b-eat.co.uk to find services in your area.

Make Every Daffodil Count’ for Marie Curie this March
2 March 2017
This week, I attended the launch of Marie Curie's ‘Make Every Daffodil Count’ campaign. This campaign will help Marie Curie provide care and support to people living with a terminal illness. I support this appeal and encourage local people to help the charity raise more money than ever before by simply giving a donation and wearing a Marie Curie daffodil pin, available from volunteers across the country, or Superdrug, Spar, Poundworld stores and Wyevale Garden Centres, during March. Morrisons supermarkets will also be holding GDA fundraising collections on 10, 11 & 12 March.
For more information about volunteering for a local collection call 0800 304 7025 or visit www.mariecurie.org.uk/daffodil

Brexit: Make it work for everyone
1 March 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Secretary of State, Department for International Trade & President of the Board of Trade, Rt Hon Liam Fox MP, on ensuring that the UK's new trade approach works for the world's poorest people.

Debates on the NHS
28 February 2017
On 27th February, I attended the Westminster Hall debate about attacks on NHS staff. You can read a transcript of the debate that took place in Hansard here.
In addition, on 27th February, there was a debate in the House of Commons on the financial position of health and social care. If you would like to read the transcript of the debate that took place, please click here. Following this debate, I have written to the Chancellor about the current state of NHS funding and will post a copy of any substantive response that I receive on my website.

Bereavement benefit reform
27 February 2017
Please click here to read the response from the Minister for Welfare Delivery, Caroline Nokes MP, regarding bereavement benefit reform.

'A full ban on microbeads' campaign emails
24 February 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about microbeads and their impact on the environment. I have written to the Secretary of State for the Department of Envrionment, Food & Rural Affairs, Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom and will post a copy of any response that I receive on my website.

UK Arms Exports to Saudi Arabia
24 February 2017
Please click here to read a response from Tobias Ellwood MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, concerning the conflict in Yemen and UK arms exports to Saudi Arabia.

Bowel Cancer Screening
22 February 2017
Please click here to read a response from David Mowat MP, Under Secretary of State for Community Health and Care, concerning bowel cancer screening.

Welfare at the time of slaughter (CCTV in slaughterhouses)
21 Feburary 2017
Please click here to read a response from Andrea Leadsom, Secretary of State for the Envionment, Food & Rural Affairs, regarding the welfare of animals at the time of slaughter.

Mubarak Assets
13 February 2017
Please click here to read a response I have received from Brandon Lewis, Home Office Minister of State, concerning the return of assets held in London by the son of Hosni Mubarak, Mr Gamal M H Mubarak.

Alcohol Duty
13 February 2017
Please click here to read a response I have received from Jane Ellison, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, concerning alcohol duty.

A&E Pressures
10 February 2017
Please click here to read a response I have received from Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, concerning pressures on A&E in the NHS.

Fur Trade
7 February 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me asking me to attend a meeting of the APPG on Animal Welfare today, to discuss the animal fur trade in the UK.
Unfortunately, I am unable to attend but I did raise this matter with Andrea Leadsom, Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and received a response which you can view by clicking here.
You will be able to view transcript of the APPG meeting by clicking here.

Article 50 – The European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill
31 January 2017
I have been asked to chair the Committee Stage of this Bill which, because it is a constitutional matter, is discussed by a Committee of the whole House. This means that, in accordance with the protocol of the House, along with my co-chair, I am not permitted to vote at any stage of the proceedings on the legislation. Nor am I able to make further public comment upon the progress of the legislation, the content of the Bill or proposed amendments as I am required to maintain strict impartiality.

I apologise to any constituents who have contacted me about this matter and not received a response – this is because I was aware of the likelihood that Sir Roger Gale MP and I would, as the longest-serving members of the Speaker’s Panel of Chairs, be co-chairing the Bill.

Local road funding
23 January 2017
Please click here to read correspondence I have received from Andrew Jones MP, Under Secretary of State at the Department for Transport, concerning capital funding that will provided to local councils to support infrastructure projects on local roads and ease congestion.

Syria
20 January 2017
Please click here to see a response from Tobias Ellwood MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, concerning the situation in Syria.

Survivors of torture
20 January 2017
Please click here to see the response from UK Visas and Immigration about victims of torture.

Finn’s Law to protect police support animals
13 January 2017
A number of constituents have contacted me about ‘Finn’s Law’, a proposal that UK Police Dogs and Horses are given protection that reflects their status if assaulted in the line of duty.
A Government e-petition on this issue received over 124,000 signatures. The Government responded to this petition and the topic was debated on 14th November 2016.
The Government has since changed its response to this petition and agreed to explore whether there is more that the law should do to offer the most appropriate protections to police animals and all working animals. The Government “has requested that the Sentencing Council considers assaults on police animals as an aggravating factor as a part of their current review on guidelines for sentencing in the Magistrates’ Courts, which includes animal cruelty offences."

Age UK
12 January 2017
Age UK Mid Mersey are highlighting the companionship and support they provide to older people in the local area.
There are a number of ways Age UK Mid Mersey can provide support to older people who may be worried about a range of issues, from claiming benefits to moving to a care home. There are also opportunities for older people across Merseyside to meet others in the local community via their local Age UK.
For more information please click here or call 01744 752 644.
Age UK are also looking for support from the local community to help them become supermarket Morrisons’ next chosen charity of the year. If Age UK are picked, it means they will be able to do more for thousands of older people. To find out more please click here.

Gambling machines and advertising
12 January 2017
Please click here to read the response from Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport about gambling.

Crisis in the NHS
11 January 2017
The current crisis our NHS faces is unprecedented. Our health service is on its knees with one third of hospitals having declared they need urgent help to deal with the number of patients coming through their doors. A&E departments have turned patients away more than 143 times between 1 December 2016 and 1 January 2017. In one day last month 15 hospitals ran out of beds with elderly patients languishing on trolleys in corridors, sometimes for over 24 hours. Instead of dealing with the crisis, on Monday Jeremy Hunt suggested that the four hour A&E target may be downgraded and no longer apply to minor injuries. Today, I have written to Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, to ask him to put measures in place to ensure that hospitals have the resources they need to cope throughout winter, in order to make sure patients get the care they deserve. I am also calling on the Government to bring forward the £700m of social care funding planned for 2019/20 now and to pledge a new funding settlement for health and social care in the Budget in March. I will post a copy of any substantive response I receive on my website.


Archive:

You can see earlier press appearances and speeches here:
2007
| 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011
I 2012 I 2013 I 2014 I 2015 I 2016 I 2017 I 2018

View the Parliamentary achive here:
2007
| 2008 | 2009 | 2010


To search Hansard for more examples of George speaking in Parliament, please click Here.

Early Day Motions:

As well as making speeches and asking questions in Parliament, you can view the Early Day Motions (EDMs) George has signed. EDMs draw attention to specific events or campaigns, and demonstrate parliamentary support for a particular cause or point of view. You can find out more from the House of Commons advice sheet.

 


 

Search georgehowarth.org.uk
 

 

 

 

 

©2007-19 Rt Hon George Howarth MP for Knowsley