This week, we've had the State Opening of Parliament and the Queen's Speech, which sets out the Government’s legislative plans for the year ahead.
I’m proud that the amendment I tabled on TTIP (the EU-US trade deal) became the first amendment to a Queens Speech to be accepted for 94 years. It is clear that action needs to be taken to ensure the NHS is specifically exempted from the threat posed by private American healthcare companies. This is an important issue and I’m glad to have forced the Government into yet another climb-down, just months after doing the same on their Budget.
I’ve also been working to ensure that the savings from the abolition of the tampon tax are fully passed on to customers. I’ve had an encouraging meeting with trade association representatives for UK manufacturers and I look forward to working with them further on this.
On Wednesday I met with the Transport Minister Andrew Jones to discuss Mirfield Railway Station and the ongoing battle for better accessibility at the station. He has promised to look into funding options that may be available to make much needed improvements. I’ll continue to work with local campaigners to press this issue.
I’ve had meetings with the Royal College of Physicians and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) this week to discuss the situation at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust. It is imperative that everyone works together to resolve issues at the Trust, primarily the very serious staffing shortage. Patient safety must come first.
Today (Friday) I have a busy day in the constituency – after meeting with the CQC this morning, joining a street stall to support National Dementia Awareness Week and having a catch up with West Yorkshire Police Constable, Dee Collins, I’ll be joining the Labour In campaign team this afternoon with Tom Watson MP.
On Saturday morning I have a surgery in Shepley which is open to any local constituents who have issues or concerns they would like me to help with.