Catherine campaigning for a properly funded NHS
With London known as a key cog in the wheel of money laundering, I attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Corruption on Monday. I met with the cast of McMafia, a BBC drama documenting the global criminal underworld. We discussed how vital London is for global corruption and what can be done to tackle it. I wrote about the issue for The Guardian, urging Prime Minister Theresa May to introduce a public register of beneficial ownership of UK property.
Afterwards, I met in Parliament with Yanis Varoufakis, former Greek Finance Minister, to discuss Democracy in Europe. The discussion focussed on how Britain can best have a progressive influence over European democracy. While decisions ahead remain difficult, I believe that a close relationship with Europe is the best course of action for our prosperity and development and will continue to push this issue in Parliament.
Having written and campaigned against plastic waste, I have become the Vice Chair of the new All Party Parliamentary Group on the prevention of plastic waste. At the inaugural meeting, we discussed how we can work with the industry and public bodies to help reduce the devastating wastage that currently takes place, with dire consequences for the environment.
On Tuesday I chaired the Westminster Higher Education Forum, where we discussed the future of UK science and innovation in light of Brexit. I continue to believe that our higher education sector is one of our top exports and should be protected by the Government. That can start by removing international students from the migration target, but also commiting to programmes such as Horizon 2020.
Later in the day I met with the Federation of Small Business to speak about small housebuilders and how they can help the sector provide the homes our country desperately needs. In London the price and availability of housing needs improving, and small businesses have a key role to play in its provision.
The All Party Parliamentary Group on Swimming, which I founded, met on Wednesday to talk about outdoor swimming and the restoration of lidos. We welcomed Chris Romer-Lee to present on the Thames Baths project, and Dennis Freeman-Wright, Head of Facilities at Swim England, provided advice relating to the building and restoring of facilities.
On Thursday I was a panelist at a debate on the relationship politicians have with the media and whether this undermines or strengthen democracy. Speaking alongside Kate Proctor from the Evening Standard, Councillor Clive Carter and Simon Aldridge, we talked about President Donald Trump and his use of Twitter, as well as the leaking of information.
I finished the week by meeting with Chocolate Factory 1 artists to talk about local development and how to get studio spaces available for use. The Chocolate Factory is a hub of creativity and home to a number of creative industries, with the resulting collaboration hugely beneficial to both the artists and our community.
Over the weekend I campaigned with the Hornsey & Wood Green Labour Party for a properly funded NHS that serves patients and not profits. A Labour Government will invest in our health service, not lead it into winter crisis after winter crisis.
Catherine campaigning for a properly funded NHS With London known as a key cog in the wheel of money laundering, I attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on Anti-Corruption on...Go to the post
Catherine at the Holocaust Multi-Faith Commemoration
I began the week by meeting with fellow North London MPs, the British Medical Association London Regional Council and the Royal College of Nursing to discuss the North Central London Sustainability and Transformation Plan. We also discussed the impact of the Capped Expenditure Process and access to ‘low priority’ serves and certain drug prescriptions. With increasing austerity, the money guaranteed to the NHS by the Conservatives simply is not enough. Huge numbers of NHS Trusts in London remain in deficit, with morale sinking day by day and patients not getting access to the right care. I will continue to call out the Government’s dismal record and push for greater funding for our NHS.
The debate that I secured in Parliament on Skills in London was held on Tuesday. The skills shortage remains particularly acute in London and has worsened severely since 2010, when further education colleges faced cuts of 50% to their funding. The skills system in the UK is very centralised, leaving London with few tools at its disposal to cope with London-specific issues, such as the higher demand for English as a second language, historically low levels of apprenticeships and the reliance on incoming labour in key sectors. There is a strong case for devolution of skills, especially in light of Brexit, to ensure that people can access jobs and employers can access a highly trained workforce. You can read the full debate, along with my speech, here.
Afterwards I attended the British Group Inter-Parliamentary Union to discuss the role of Parliamentarians in addressing climate change. We heard from Dr. Alina Averchekova, lead of Governance and Legislation at the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment. I firmly believe that our country should take a lead on reducing climate change, especially in light of President Donald Trump leaving the Paris Accord. It is for that reason that I signed a pledge to divest MPs’ pension fund from fossil fuels.
This week I asked the Government a series of questions over what conversations they have had with their Turkish counterparts over the opening of a new front in the Syrian civil war, which is deeply distressing. As Turkish troops continue their invasion of a Kurdish enclave in north-west of Syria, devastation continues and will likely lead to a surge in the number of refugees fleeing the region. Our Government must put pressure on all sides to cease the violence.
I have also been monitoring the elections in Cyprus, the first round of which ran last Sunday. With no candidate having won an outright majority, the next round will continue this Sunday. I will continue to keep an eye on developments.
I was able to hold the Government to account on Thursday over the use of disposable plastic packaging. Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Michael Gove said that there had been a roundtable before Christmas to encourage retailers to commit to reducing demand for plastic. However, this does not go far enough, with the Government failing to assist supermarkets meet targets.
Later in the day I attended a debating competition at Alexandra Park School. It was incredible to see six local schools, all with informed and persuasive contestants, take part in this fantastic competition across a range of topics.
On Friday, I met with Abubakar Ali, representing the Somali Bravanese Community, which is established in London. We spoke about issues affecting the Somali community both in the UK and in Somalia, as well as rebuilding of the Somali Community Centre.
Over the weekend I campaigned in our constituency, listening to constituents’ concerns, before I gave a reading at the Holocaust Multi-Faith Commemoration. It is vital that these atrocities are never forgotten and we continue to hold up human rights for everyone, no matter where they are born.
Catherine at the Holocaust Multi-Faith Commemoration I began the week by meeting with fellow North London MPs, the British Medical Association London Regional Council and the Royal College of Nursing...Go to the post
Prime Minister Theresa May suffered her first Parliamentary defeat last week as Labour helped secure a huge victory for democracy. MPs voted by 309 to 305 in support of Amendment 7 to the EU Withdrawal Bill. This means there can be no Brexit deal until it has been placed on the statute book through an act of Parliament, putting the power back in the hands of MPs and not ministers. Parliament will now have a say over the Brexit process, no matter what happens in the negotiations. I also wrote an article for the Huffington Post to outline why our Government must realise a Canada-Style deal does not fit the UK.
Earlier in the week I met with Woodside High School students in Parliament to discuss democracy and the role of an MP in the UK’s political system. One of my favourite parts of being an MP is talking to engaged young members of our community, and I will continue to campaign for their rights by supporting legislation such as Votes at 16.
One year after the launch of the campaign, 100 MPs, including myself, have signed a pledge to divest our pensions from fossil fuels. This is more important than ever, with 2017 having brought soaring temperatures and devastating climate impacts. We know that stopping dangerous climate change means keeping fossil fuels in the ground, so I am pleased to have signed this important pledge.
Last Tuesday I visited the National Childbirth Trust (NCT), the UK's largest charity for parents - supporting them through the first 1,000 days of childbirth. I spoke to parents who need more action on postnatal mental illness, given around half of new mothers’ mental health problems do not get picked up. Mothers should get the treatment they need and I will press for this at every opportunity in Parliament.
The six month anniversary of the Grenfell Tragedy was commemorated last week, with a huge number of victims still not having been rehoused. We will never forget what happened in Kensington and Chelsea earlier this year, must learn the lessons of it and support those whose lives have been turned upside down by the terrible events that unfolded.
Prime Minister Theresa May suffered her first Parliamentary defeat last week as Labour helped secure a huge victory for democracy. MPs voted by 309 to 305 in support of...Go to the post
I attended a debate on Public Sector Pay on Monday, asking the Government if it accepts there is a link between the current crisis in numbers of nurses in the NHS and the pay on offer, particularly given the huge student debts that many nursing graduates have. The debt It is up to £54,000 for those at London Metropolitan University, so I asked if the Government believes that there is any link between a starting salary of £21,500 and a huge student debt of £54,000 for nurses. The Minister told me that he recognises that there is a link between salaries and debt for people making choices and and that the Government will take the recommendations of the pay review body process into account. I will continue to monitor this issue and push for fair pay for public sector workers.
On Tuesday I spoke at Highgate Synagogue about the need to help refugees across the world. Refugees are still streaming into Europe for the hope of safety and security, only to be left desolate in Greece and Italy. Meanwhile, thousands of lone refugee children remain at risk in Europe while the UK continues to ignore its commitment to offer sanctuary. Across the world, Rohingya Muslims are fleeing violence in Burma, but left in precarious situations as the arrive in Bangladesh. The UK must help lead the way in helping the world’s most desperate people.
An article written by Stella Creasy and myself was published in the Guardian on Wednesday calling on politicians and society to recognise the benefits of immigration. Labour must lead the debate on freedom of movement and ensure that we don’t forgo our obligations to those who also need us to be a place of sanctuary. We must also tackle head on the concerns about change, ensuring that resources are available, collected and effectively distributed. It is time to step up and fight for all our freedoms – regardless of where we were born. You can read the article here.
During the day I attended Amnesty UK’s annual reception to commemorate Human Rights Day. Human Rights continue to come under attack around the world and we must all stand up for these universal and inalienable human rights.
I wrote for the Huffington Post about the plight of human rights defenders, academics, journalists and dissidents in Turkey. At least 50,000 people have been imprisoned pending trial and more than 100,000 public sector employees have been summarily dismissed. The authorities have targeted critical voices in the media and civil society; at least 130 journalists and media workers have been detained since the attempted coup, and hundreds of media outlets and NGOs have been shut down. This Human Rights Day, I urge the Turkish Government to release Taner and drop the charges on the Istanbul 10, to release opposition politicians and academics from jail, and reverse its purge and reinstate the freedoms that have made Turkey a thriving, multicultural, open and successful nation.
I then attended a joint meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on North and South Korea to see how the APPGs can work together to help bring stability and peace to the region. With tensions high on the Korean Peninsula, I continue to believe that open dialogue between all parties remains the only sustainable solution to the crisis.
In the evening I met with other MPs to support Chagossians and their right to return home. I continue to believe that the indigenous people of Chagos should be allowed to return home after the Government made the decision in 2016 to continue Chagossian exile, refusing to back a resettlement programme that the Foreign Office deemed feasible. I will continue to campaign for Chagossians to have the right to return to their Island home.
On Thursday evening I attended a fantastic production of Joseph at St Thomas More, where students put on an incredible display of song, choreography, costumes and lighting, before my last advice surgery of this year on Friday. I have now helped over 4,000 constituents with their grievances and look forward to working with constituents in the New Year on issues affecting our community.
Over the weekend I attended a discussion with the Hornsey & Wood Green Womens Forum to listen to constituents about their concerns, before attending a Christmas concert at Weston Park Bakery.
I attended a debate on Public Sector Pay on Monday, asking the Government if it accepts there is a link between the current crisis in numbers of nurses in the...Go to the post
I began the week by attending the AIDS Memorial Quilt Exhibition in Parliament, with Friday also being World AIDS Day. The UK has contributed substantially to eradicating the disease, but more must be done. As I wrote for the Independent last week, new infections remain high, with 1.8 million people becoming newly infected with HIV in 2016. Meanwhile, many countries continue to impose unacceptable discriminatory legal frameworks on people living with HIV and people most affected by HIV. Internationally, the challenge for new International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt is to formalise and publish a strategy on HIV quickly, increase levels of funding in line with UNAids recommendations, while putting the issue on the agenda at upcoming meetings including the International Aids Society Conference.
In the afternoon I attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on Chinese in Britain for the Launch of the International Student Report, which outlines recommendations for the Government in order to make university life more fulfilling and enjoyable for Chinese students. I have been campaigning strongly for the Government to take international students out of the net migration target in order to keep our university and academia sector world leading. The Government has replied to me, which you can find here.
Later I celebrate the contribution London’s further education and sixth form colleges make to social mobility and economic prosperity in our city at the Association of Colleges London Region reception. It was great to explore the role that colleges play in delivering excellent further and technical education to thousands of Londoners across the city.
On Tuesday I asked the Government what more needs to be done to target aid for women and children in the Rohingya Crisis. Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar in recent months in the midst of extreme violence. I believe that the UK Government should be taking a lead on the crisis generally, whilst making sure that aid is made available for victims of gender made violence.
Afterwards I met with Maria Caridad Rubio Hernandez, chair of Cuba’s National Panel on the Control of Breast Cancer at the Institute of Oncology and Radiology. A qualified doctor who has worked in women’s health for many years, we spoke about the Cuba Solidarity Campaign with other MPs.
On Wednesay I spoke at the 99% Campaign in parliament, before hearing from marginalised young people in the context of Brexit. It was fantastic to engage with young people on how Brexit will impact them and what effect they will have on young carers and young people, touching on issues from rights, the economy, the NHS and social care, as well as education.
On Friday I spoke at Haringey’s First World War Conscientious Objectors’ lottery project launch. Heritage Lottery Fund has made a substantial grant to the Haringey First World War Peace Forum, a small but active local group, for a project called “Conscientious Objection Remembered”, which makes known the stories of Haringey Conscientious Objectors from WWI.
I then went to the Winter Gala Dinner to support the Mayor’s Special Fund, which helps support mental health provision in the borough. The scheme supports Studio 306 Collective and MIND in Haringey, both of which help those with mental illness. As Patron for the Labour Campaign for Mental Health, I strongly believe that more needs to be done to help those who suffer from mental illness and will continue to do all I can in Parliament and our community to raise the issue up the agenda.
Saturday was Small Business Saturday across the UK and into Hornsey & Wood Green. Small, independent businesses serve our community well, adding to its culture and identity. However, the Government is not currently doing enough to stand by them. I wrote about the issue in the Ham&High.
Afterwards I went along to the Coldfall Primary School Christmas Fair and the Crouch End Festival tree lighting ceremony, as well as visiting Myddleton Road for its Christmas festival and lights switch on. I was able to make it to Parkside Malvern Residents Association annual winter drinks, as well as Northern Road for the Christmas light display.
I began the week by attending the AIDS Memorial Quilt Exhibition in Parliament, with Friday also being World AIDS Day. The UK has contributed substantially to eradicating the disease, but...Go to the post
Wednesday was Budget day, and what a depressing day it was. What we thought was going to be 2015 - as Mr Osborne originally promised us – it’s now going to be 2030 before the public finances are in better shape; the disappointing news that the NHS will only get a small amount of money while Brexit is set to get £5 billion We are in a real mess. Apart from even starting on universal credit, the number of people going to foodbanks has shot right up and we have also had so many people coming to our advice surgery, saying ‘I’m worried, I’m worried about the future, I’m worried about my kids.’ This is what we are looking at. Schools having to send letters home to ask parents for donations, just so that books and pencils and pens can be purchased. To view my video response, click here.
On Thursday I set off for Brussels along with other members of the International Trade Select Committee, where we met with the International Trade Committee of the European Parliament, as well as the UK’s negotiator. The EU negotiations are continuing to stall, with little hope that a deal will be made to give citizens, businesses and workers the security they seek. Meanwhile, the EU (Withdrawal) Bill continues to make its way through Parliament, with a series of hollow concessions made by the Government to appease their own Tory backbenchers. The Labour Party continues to oppose the Government, laying out a series of amendments that would make sure the UK remains in agencies such as Euratom and in programmes such as Horizon 2020, while also ensuring the rights of EU citizens are protected in the UK.
Earlier in the week I met with Hong Kong legislator Lam Cheuk-ting, a Democratic Party politician in Hong Kong and a former investigator of the Independent Commission against Corruption. Having been also been chief executive of the Democratic Party, we spoke about Hong Kong’s current status under the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ principle and supporting calls for universal suffrage.
I then met with the Japan All Party Parliamentary Group’s sub-group on sports with the Sports minister; Annamarie Phelps, Vice-Chair of the British Olympic Association; and Koji Tsuruoka, Ambassador of Japan. The group is looking forward to the international sporting events being hosted in Japan, including the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and I am delighted to help facilitate discussions of the positive impact sport can have on society, as well as the relationship between the UK and Japan.
With reported crime on the rise, I also attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on knife crime, where we spoke with young people who have been directly involved in knife crime. It was enlightening to hear such honest accounts of knife crime, helping inform MPs of how to tackle the epidemic.
I held my regular advice surgery at Wood Green Library on Friday, where I was able to hear constituents’ concerns and help them with grievances they have. For further details on this, please click here.
Saturday was Labour’s National Day of Action, where many turned out to campaign for a fairer future, built on social justice. The Labour Party stands ready as a Government in waiting, ready to take over and implement policies that will help everyone get by.
Wednesday was Budget day, and what a depressing day it was. What we thought was going to be 2015 - as Mr Osborne originally promised us – it’s now going...Go to the post
I spoke to Sixth Form students at Highgate Wood on Monday morning to talk about my experience of politics and the role of an MP in a functioning democracy, both across local and national issues. It was fantastic to engage with students interested in politics and how it interacts with the real world. I also spoke to Muswell Hill Primary School later in the week about being resilient and working with others as part of a team.
The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill was back in Parliament on Tuesday for a Committee of the Whole House, where all MPs are now able to scrutinise the bill line by line. Unfortunately, the Government has been able to win all of its votes by making a series of meaningless concessions. Labour MPs continue to believe that the Bill needs to be improved on, making sure that the UK remains in agencies such as Euratom and in programmes such as Horizon 2020, while also ensuring the rights of EU citizens are protected in the UK. Debate is set to continue on the Bill and I will hold the Government to account every step of the way.
Prime Minister Theresa May’s biggest challenge will come when the Commons debates fixing the date and time of the UK’s exit. The Government wants to put into law that the UK will leave the EU on 29 March 29. I will join my Labour colleagues in voting against the key Brexit legislation amendment, which even a number of Tory MPs have harshly criticised.
I also joined with the Federation of Small Businesses from London for a briefing on what small businesses in our capital need from the Government in order to thrive. Even in business the Tories are letting down the country. A number of small business owners in my own constituency have been in contact with me over recent months, fearful of having to close their operations or employ fewer people due to changes to business rates and a lack of support from the Government.
In the evening I spoke at the Haringey CND event on why the UK is boycotting the Global Nuclear Ban agreed by 122 at the UN, before attending the Bowes Park Community Association AGM.
On Friday I met with Hornsey Pensioners, who want to see greater funding for the NHS during the Budget, as well assessing the state pension and universal benefits, which are crucial for older people to be active members of the community.
In the evening I met with Hornsey Parish Church, which hosted the Winter Night Shelter in order to learn about how it functions. The Shelter provides an invaluable service, giving hot meals and beds for the homeless who would otherwise be out on the streets during the coldest months of the year.
Over the weekend I attended Muswell Hill Synagogue for its sixth annual Civic Service, along with the Mayor of Haringey, Councillor Stephen Mann. Afterwards I attended Wightman Road Mosque in the afternoon to talk to young people about politics and why it is good for communities if more people are involved, before celebrating Diwali at the community hub in Haringey.
I spoke to Sixth Form students at Highgate Wood on Monday morning to talk about my experience of politics and the role of an MP in a functioning democracy, both...Go to the post
I held the Government to account over education on Monday, asking Schools Minister Nick Gibb what the funding allocation is for the coming academic year for counselling services and help for transgender children, which the charity Stonewall describes as being in a seriously bad state. The Minister said £3m had been allocated for a programme to stop homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying, and I will continue to monitor the situation to help eradicate this bullying.
I was on Sky News this week, where I spoke about the lack of progress in the EU negotiations. The Government continues to appear oblivious to the fact the EU and UK at loggerheads, with EU officials wanting solid progress on the UK’s Brexit Divorce Bill, the rights of EU citizens in the UK and Northern Ireland. These three issues have not been tackled by our Conservative Government, and thus has meant there has been an astonishing lack of progress. With 2019 rapidly approaching, business, workers and citizens need certainty that this Government are simply unable to provide. It is time for the Tories to either govern to leave it to Labour to take over this crucial negotiation.
On Tuesday the All Party Parliamentary Group for Swimming met, discussing how to improve schools swimming, where Steve Parry, an Olympic Medallist and Director of Total Swimming and Total Gymnastics, spoke about how to engage with schools and students to get more children swimming. I also met with Royal Life Saving Society, the UK’s Drowning Prevention Charity. Some 400 people needlessly die from drowning in the UK every year, with thousands more suffering injuries. It was fantastic to hear about the charity’s work and how it can work with the APPG for Water Safety and Drowning Prevention.
I held my regular advice surgery on Friday where I was able to listen to constituents’ concerns and help with their problems. For regular updates, please check my website.
On Sunday I joined Councillor Stephen Mann, the Mayor of Haringey, for the Borough Civic Act of Remembrance to honour those who gave their lives in conflicts to defend our way of life. Their brave service to all future generations will never be forgotten.
I held the Government to account over education on Monday, asking Schools Minister Nick Gibb what the funding allocation is for the coming academic year for counselling services and help...Go to the post
I joined the Living Wage Foundation to campaign for a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. In Hornsey and Wood Green, 11% of people in work earn less than they need to live on. The figure for London is 18%. The country deserves a pay-rise and the Government must help bring this about.
This week the International Trade Select Committee questioned Dr Liam Fox, International Trade Secretary. The Committee was able to hold the department to account on their vague aims in the wake of Brexit and the uncertainty that has been caused. I was personally able to ask if the UK will retain EU rules on the restraint of sale of goods and services related to torture and the death penalty. I was assured that Brexit would not lead to a weakening of our ethical standards, and I will continue to hold the Government to account on this issue.
I met with Korean Ambassador Joonkook Hwang in Parliament to talk about how to support closer links between our countries. As tensions on the Korean Peninsula continue to escalate, I believe a diplomatic solution offers the only way forward to securing peace in the region.
Discussing Japanese businesses and the UK’s future economy with Ambassador Tsuruoka on Tuesday evening, I was able to explore opportunities that Japanese innovation and cutting edge technologies can play in the UK’s future economic growth. The UK must remain an open country in the wake of Brexit, so it was exciting to view the positive impact of Japanese investment in boosting the UK’s trade and creating jobs.
As Vice Chair of the APPG on Hong Kong, I met with Edward Leung, leader of the Hong Kong Indigenous Party and a former researcher at the Kennedy School of Harvard University, who is fighting for democracy is Hong Kong. At least 118 pro-democracy protesters are either charged or in imprisonment. With the political suppression in Hong Kong, Edward is working closely with Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow to call for unity among the opposition groups. With their imprisonment in August, I share Edward’s call for their release and for the British Government to uphold the Joint Declaration that secures democratic norms in Hong Kong.
On Thursday I was able to ask the Government what steps the Department for International Trade has taken to maintain UK access to the Horizon 2020 programme and Erasmus+ programme after the UK leaves the EU. The Government still has not engaged with the European Commission on this issue and access must be maintained. If the Government does not secure access, the Government needs to commit to funding UK researchers as “third country” participants.
In the afternoon I attended a backbench motion debate on Calais and unaccompanied child refugees in Europe. The UK has taken just 750 child refugees from Calais and more provision must be taken to create safe and legal means to bring children into the UK and to reunite with families. The UK has a moral obligation to help the world’s most desperate children from falling into the hands of traffickers who will abuse and exploit them. Many countries around Europe are closing their doors to refugees - the UK can and must do better.
On Friday I sat in Parliament as the Commons voted through the Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill from Labour MP Steve Reed at its second reading. His law would outlaw disproportionate use of force against people with mental ill health, which is wholly unacceptable. As Patron of the Labour Campaign for Mental Health, I will continue to fight for better mental health provision and care.
I also sat as the Conservative benches voted against Votes for 16, brought by Labour MP Jim McMahon. The Tories sabotaged the votes for 16 year olds, but Labour will continue to fight for this right. Arguments made by Conservative MPs such as Bernard Jenkin, suggesting that 16-17 year olds do not have the requisite level on maturity to vote hold little water. Working with young constituents, I understand the interest and dedication of younger members of our community, which made it all the more disappointing that the Bill was not passed.
I joined the Living Wage Foundation to campaign for a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. In Hornsey and Wood Green, 11% of people in work earn less...Go to the post
On Monday morning I met with chief executive of North Middlesex University Hospital Trust for a general update about the hospital and how we can work together to ensure patient care is delivered as effectively as possible. A report from charity the Health Foundation has found that shortages of nurses are growing, calling the situation "extremely worrying". The Government needs to spend on nurses to fill the gap and ensure it employs enough dedicated staff to meet the demands of an ageing population.
I spoke at a Safe in Schools Diabetes event in Parliament in the afternoon to help raise awareness about the issue affecting people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. As a member of the Diabetes APPG and having spoken to a number of parents about their experiences, I understand the need for change in support, with schools being required by law to have a medical conditions policy. You can sign a petition here.
On Tuesday I joined teachers, parents and students in Parliament to lobby the Government against school cuts. I spoke to constituents concerned and worried scared about the biggest shortfall in school funding in a generation, because while school and academy costs are rising the Government is still failing to provide the level of funding they need to meet costs. Next month the Chancellor of the Exchequer has a chance to fix the Government’s record. When Philip Hammond delivers his Budget he must cover the current shortfall by releasing new money from the Treasury - not move money around from other areas of education spending.
The Westminster Hall Debate on police funding in London that I secured was held on Wednesday morning, with strong turnout from Labour MPs. Police stations are closing and neighbourhood policing is under attack. Visibly we are seeing the closing of police stations across the capital, with half of London’s remaining 73 police station counters set to close, including a number in Hornsey & Wood Green, and fewer police officers on the street. Across the UK and into London there are 20,000 fewer police officers than at its peak in 2010, with 924 fewer than last year alone. Some 70 per cent of the Met’s funding comes from the Home Office and as such it must wake up and realise that without urgent action, the head count will fall further. We can not protect our communities on the cheap.s
My EDM on indefinite detention is now circulating among MPs. Many in Parliament remain concerned that the UK detains people indefinitely under immigration rules and I am calling on the Government to urgently reform immigration detention by introducing a 28-day time limit. The UK is the only country in Europe without a time limit on detention and people can be detained for months and years on end without knowing when they will be released - it is time for this to change.
On Friday I held my regular advice surgery at Wood Green Library, where I was able to speak to constituents about their concerns and how I can help them. For more information about future surgeries, please check my website by clicking here.
I then met with The Leafy Bean, a new independent coffee shop that has opened at Bowes Park Station, to speak to owner Laura Monk on local improvements and performance. It was fantastic to see a new independent shop open successfully, while I was grateful to speak about the vital issue of transport infrastructure in the capital. Investing in infrastructure in London remains imperative to keep our city moving, which is why along with colleagues I am continuing to lobby the Government to commit to this spending.
Over the weekend I attended the fifth anniversary of the Haringey Youth Festival at Duke’s Aldridge Academy, where an incredible display of talents was on show from young people in the borough. The festival does fantastic work utilising the performing arts as a means of unifying the borough and connecting young people in a space where they can develop their love for the arts.
On Monday morning I met with chief executive of North Middlesex University Hospital Trust for a general update about the hospital and how we can work together to ensure patient...Go to the post