This week, I was delighted to add my name to the McPartland-Smith amendments to the Building Safety Bill, which will ensure innocent leaseholders are not liable for any costs of remediation of dangerous cladding. As you know I have campaigned extensively on this issue. I was a signatory to the amendments to the Fire Safety Bill, that would have had the same effect. I have also repeatedly raised that negligent and deceptive industry practices, a failure of regulation, and soaring insurance costs have pushed thousands to the brink of financial ruin. I have also worked to hold the Government to account on its contradictory and flawed policies surrounding the Waking Watch Fund, the Building Safety Fund, EWS1 forms and Professional Indemnity Insurance. Throughout all my work this year, I have sought to highlight the emotional and financial strains this crisis has put on innocent leaseholders. I will continue my steadfast commitment to advocate for constituents who have been unjustly affected by the cladding scandal as the Building Safety Bill returns to Parliament next year.
I am thrilled to announce the winner of my Christmas Winter Card Competition. A huge congratulations to Kevin Liu from Nelson Primary School for his brilliant design that will go out to the 2,000 people on my mailing list. I also awarded three runners up for their creativity and fabulously festive designs – well done to Laaibah Shaikh from Birchfield Primary, Mu’adh Waqqas from King Edwards Aston, and Julia from Sacred Heart primary. Thank you to everyone who sent in their card designs, it was really difficult to pick a winner because there were so many fantastic entries!
This week, Leader of the Labour Party Keir Starmer addressed the nation to explain why the Labour Party were supporting the Government’s plan to get every adult boosted by the end of the month. With the new Omicron variant sweeping through the population, we must all put the national interest first. That is why in Parliament this week, Labour voted for the Government’s new Covid-19 regulations. This was the right thing to do. I want to make sure that everyone can enjoy Christmas safely this year, and to make sure we protect our NHS – which has been suffering a staffing shortage and record waiting lists since before the pandemic hit, thanks to 11 years of Conservative mismanagement.
Throughout the pandemic Labour has always put public health before party politics. We will continue to support particular measures based on their merits. Omicron is a clear threat and the government must act swiftly to limit its spread. Getting vaccinated, wearing masks and working from home if we can will help prevent infections and help prevent the NHS being overwhelmed, and I ask everyone to do all they can to keep their families safe this Christmas.
This is my final round up before the Christmas break and your next one will be in 2022. I want to take this moment to say a huge thank you to everyone for all the hard work they have done keeping our shelves stacked, our transport networks moving and our sick cared for. I also want to acknowledge how many sacrifices have been made over the last two years in the wake of the pandemic and I hope you all get a well-deserved Christmas break, however you celebrate the season.
Me and my office will continue to be around to support anyone who needs it over the break, but we will be operating with reduced staffing levels until 4th January 2022, and we appreciate your patience as we may not able to respond to incoming enquiries as quickly.
Stay safe everyone, have fantastic Christmases and a Happy New Year!