I voted against the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill at the first parliamentary opportunity. This bill was an opportunity for meaningful sentencing reform. There is an all-time record high backlog of more than 56,000 cases awaiting a hearing. Victims of crime are being asked to wait up to 4 years to get to court.
The Government recently announced an emergency authorisation of a previously banned pesticide that disproportionately affects bees. It is vital our farming practices are sustainable and protect bees – a vital species in our ecosystem. Luke Pollard, the Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, has been clear that Labour does not support this emergency authorisation and has urged the Government to think again.
Thanks Kazeem and the NHS for giving me my vaccine today. It was quick, painless, and easy.
Please take the vaccine when it is your turn to do so. It's the best way of protecting ourselves and our loved ones.
The Government allocated £37 billion for Test and Trace and yet despite the unimaginable resources thrown at this project, Test and Trace cannot point to a measurable difference to the progress of the pandemic. Taxpayers are not the Government's ATM machine. We need a clear plan and costs better controlled. The Public Accounts Committee will return to our investigation on this in the summer.
Young people in Hackney and the UK have spent the majority of their lives here but must pay eye-watering fees for citizenship.
They are talented, capable, and essentially British – but priced out of citizenship. The Government must act.
I remain concerned about the slow broadband in parts of Hackney. With more people working from home, I am pressing Openreach about the not-spots. The average download speed in London is 78.3 Mbps, however in Hackney Central it is as low as 47.4 Mbps, putting it in the worst 30 per cent of areas across the UK. Shoreditch is also in the worst 10 per cent of areas in the UK for people unable to receive good speeds.
No worker removed from their frontline role should see their career suffer. This applies particularly to workers from black and minority ethnic backgrounds who were removed from frontline duties for their own safety during this pandemic.
I pressed the Minister for Equalities, Kemi Badenoch MP, on this (see above) and have recently received a letter in response to my question. Read the letter by clicking the pdf link below.
This Government has failed to put in place a proper financial support package for those struggling to afford self-isolation. It means that only 3 in 10 people are following the instruction to self-isolate when contacted by Test and Trace.
I'll continue pressing the Government to step up and support those struggling to afford self-isolation.
I have been working hard to press the Government to ensure that every child has access to regular, nutritious, healthy food. Last month, I signed Emma Lewell-Buck MP's letter to the Minister for Children and Families to urge the Government to scale up school breakfast funding and make support to schools permanent. See more here.
We have now received this response from the minister. Read the letter in full by clicking the pdf attachment below.