Thanks to Plastic Free Hackney for raising with me concerns about the poor recycling rates of disposable cups in Parliament. During the pandemic, I’ve become increasing concerned about the impact that many new behaviours are having on sustainability and our need to urgently transition to a net zero economy. On the parliamentary estate, for instance, you are no longer allowed to bring your own reusable cups when purchasing a drink. This is a small but important example of how we can slowly start going backwards on these important issues.
I pressed the Government over concerning reports that the former Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock MP, and other ministers conducted government business using private email communications.
If true, it would mean that neither government officials nor the National Audit Office were able to scrutinise these exchanges to ensure due process was followed. This is unacceptable. How decisions on taxpayers’ money are reached should be fully transparent.
See my weekly round-up below for an update on my advice surgeries in Hackney. I am piloting Town Hall surgeries but prioritising personal cases, particularly those who have struggled to contact me and other services online during the pandemic.
The Public Accounts Committee pressed Home Office officials on the delays with the Windrush Compensation Scheme, which has paid out only very few claims. It is clear that the scheme was rolled out before it was ready to receive applications – two years later and victims are still facing long waits to receive their final compensation payment.
A number of constituents wrote to me regarding arms exports to Israel.
I wrote to the Government and have recently received a response from the Minister for International Trade, Ranil Jayawardena MP, on this issue.
Click the pdf link below to read the response in full.
I am clear that there is no place for this dangerous and harmful practice in the UK. I am disappointed that nearly two years after first pledging to ban this practice, the Government has not yet done so.
I wrote to the Government to press it on this issue. The Minister for Equalities, Kemi Badenoch MP, has recently replied to this letter. You can read her response in full by clicking the pdf link below.
I will continue working with my frontbench Labour colleagues to urge the Government to introduce a swift ban on this practice.
So grateful and excited to have had my second vaccine. Quick and painless and one of the best moments in my life.
If you are in groups 1-9 and have hesitated - do book your appointment. It's not too late. It's safe, quick, and vital with the more transmissible variant now spreading.