The Public Accounts Committee looked again at the supply of PPE and heard from companies that routinely supplied the NHS and the social care sector but who didn't get a look in from the Government in March 2020. We also learnt that there is nearly 10,000 shipping containers worth of PPE on our docks unused. See here to read a transcript of the meeting.
I raised again in the House of Commons the issue of requiring voters to produce photographic identification in order to vote. I challenged the Equalities Minister to ensure that Commonwealth individuals who are midway through citizenship applications (and so whose identity documents are stuck with the Home Office) will not be prevented from voting. See here. I will continue pressing the Government on this issue.
Also this week I held a virtual roundtable with the Disabilities Minister, Justin Tomlinson MP, about support for disabled people getting into work. I was joined by Hackney Council’s Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources, Cllr Carole Williams, local groups, and individuals from Hackney to hear their lived experiences navigating the welfare system whilst living with a disability. The roundtable was an excellent opportunity to feedback directly to the Minister and highlight what needs to change. If you are working or seeking work whilst living with a disability, please feed in your experience.
In Hackney, there is a very serious issue about our vaccine take up. Around 18,000 people across the borough have not had their vaccine from priority groups 1-9. Whilst it's good news that people over 30 are able to access the vaccine, there are some very vulnerable people who've still not had their jab. If you are worried about it, please contact your own health professional. Hackney Council also has an excellent online vaccine resource hub here or see here to read a copy of Hackney Council’s vaccine booklet. The booklet is available in most locally spoken languages.