Having been pressed for action for some time, the Government finally announced support for charities and the voluntary sector.

I was also pleased to learn that Victoria Park will reopen on Saturday, although opening hours are shorter than usual – the park will close each day at 4pm.

Although it’s due to be sunny and warm this weekend, please keep following the lock down advice. We may be nearing the peak of the pandemic, and it is essential that everyone does their bit by staying home as much as possible.

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Too many people are falling through the gaps and missing out on Government support during this public health emergency.

If you’ve written in, thank you! I’ve been feeding in your personal experiences to press the Government to step up its support. Please bear with me and my team as I write back to you all.


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A number of Hackney residents have been stranded overseas because of the grounding of flights due of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Where flights have been available they have been at hugely inflated costs - beyond the reach of most people.

I have been working closely with the Shadow Foreign Secretary, Emily Thornberry as well as the Foreign Office directly.

Emily met the Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab, on Thursday 26 March and she pressed him on this issue and the complex individual situations.

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This week I've been pressing the Government on:

✅ Time limits for the Coronavirus Bill
✅ Support for start-ups, small businesses and the self-employed
✅ Homes for overcrowded and homeless families

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I know too many families struggle living in severely overcrowded accommodation. Already children are forced to share beds with parents and some vulnerable families are crammed into single flats with other families. Many live in a single-room hostels. The closure of schools, self-isolation, and family quarantine will make an already unbearable situation impossible.  

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We can do better than this. Other European countries have stepped up to the challenge – Norway is supporting freelancers/self-employed workers by providing 80% of their average salary over the last 3 years.

The Government needs to announce a proper plan.

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I know that this may be an uncertain and worrying time for many.


Please be assured that my office remains open and working as normal. Please do get in touch with your views, comments, issues and casework.


If you have an ongoing case and would like an update, or if you wish to update me, please email meghilliermp@parliament.uk, or call my office on 020 7219 5325. Phonelines are open Monday to Friday 10am – 5pm.


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