This week the Public Accounts Committee scrutinised the Government's plans for achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and ending rough sleeping by 2024. Still lots of work to do. 

And I challenged the Minister for Schools over school closures and what plans there are to support pupils with catch-up learning. See my weekly round-up for more details. 

COVID-19 infection rates are still very high in Hackney and in London. It's vital we remain vigilant against the virus and stay at home as much as possible.

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It's vital we do not lose our vigilance against the virus. COVID-19 infection rates are still very high; we must all stay at home as much as possible in order to protect the NHS and help save lives.

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Creative industry workers and businesses have been hit with the double whammy of Brexit and COVID-19. I'm organising a virtual creative industries roundtable with the shadow minister to discuss these issues and feed in examples to press the Government. 

The creative industries roundtable will take place on Wednesday 3 February at 4pm. Please email meg.hillier.mp@parliament.uk for further details and to register. 

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I have just been briefed by the Director of Public Health for London and senior NHS colleagues.
 
The rate of the virus is very high in London, which is now in a state of emergency. The COVID infection rate is over 1000 per 100,000 people which is much higher than at any time in the last 10 months. In North East London one in twenty people has the virus.
 
This weekend is critical.

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This week I've heard from public health officials who are very concerned about rising COVID levels. 

Please think carefully about household mixing during Christmas. Just because we can mix with other households, doesn't mean we should. We all need to work together to protect the NHS and prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed.

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This time last year the Prime Minister promised us an "oven-ready" Brexit deal. Instead, we're now looking at the failure of a No Deal Brexit. 

This is wholly irresponsible. 

Failure to secure a good trade deal with the European Union will mean higher tariffs on foods and exports, and so higher prices for businesses and consumers. I'll keep pressing against this and keep you updated. 

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Good news this week with the approval of a COVID-19 vaccine.

But there's still a long way between the approval of a vaccine and its roll-out, with plenty of logistical challenges. I'll continue pressing the Government to ensure it gets this right and, crucially, provides more detail about the logistics so we can all plan ahead.

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This week I focused on a report from the National Audit Office that called out the Government's approach to contracting during the first stage of the COVID-19 crisis. There was a lack of transparency, poor or non-existent record-keeping, and a failure to safeguard against conflicts of interest. I'll be investigating with the Public Accounts Committee in December. Click here to read the report in full. 

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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. 

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