This week we received good news about the early promising signs of a vaccine that could help tackle the COVID-19 virus.
If the vaccine is successful, it is vital the Government grapples with the key logistical challenge of ensuring enough doses are successfully rolled out across the UK at speed. I challenged the Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, about his plans for this (see here) and I will continue pressing the Government to get this right.
I also spoke in the House of Commons on the homelessness crisis (see here). I challenged the new housing minister (the twelfth in 10 years) over the Government's plans to tackle the housing crisis in Hackney and the UK. I urged her to back my proposal for a Housing Market Package that would see the Government fund local authorities to buy up unsold private homes. This would help alleviate overcrowding and homelessness. The minister agreed to meet with me and Karen Buck MP (who I am working with on these proposals). I will keep you updated.
And at a hearing of the Public Accounts Committee I, again, raised the issue of the forgotten freelancers and self-employed who've been locked out of all Government support since the start of the crisis. See here for a recording of the session. The Permanent Secretary at the Treasury (the most senior civil servant) suggested there was no room for manoeuvre from the Government. I will remain on the case.