Please find below a summary of my activities for the week
On Monday, I will return to Parliament and will be meeting with Labour’s Brexit team. I will be attending a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Mesh which will be attended by Members of the Scottish Parliament. This will allow us to discuss recent victories on Mesh and related issues (I was, for example, delighted to see that the Department of Health and Social Care has agreed to provide physiotherapy to new mums through the NHS) and plan the next steps going forward.
I will then attend a meeting with Chris Blackmore, Chair of the Humberside Local Resilience Forum and Chief Fire Officer for Humberside, to discuss the steps to be taken in the event of a no deal Brexit. I have significant concerns about the impact that such an outcome will place on Hull and will be continuing to set out my concerns both to Chris and more widely.
I will also be speaking in a debate about lowering the age of availability for smear tests. 584 people signed this petition in Hull and Hessle. The debate comes on the back of a fall to the lowest take up of smear tests in 20 years with only 73% of women offered a smear test attending the test in Hull in 2016/17, the last set of data that is available. I will be arguing that more needs to be done to encourage women to take up the opportunity for these smear tests.
On Tuesday, the main order of business is the second meaningful vote on the EU Withdrawal Agreement. I voted against the deal. Despite suffering the biggest defeat in the history of Parliament, the government have refused to work in the national interest by listening to politicians from across the House of Commons and Business and Trade Union leaders outside of it. Very little of significance has changed with this deal and I will be voting against it again.
On Wednesday, I will be meeting, along with Diana Johnson and Karl Turner, with representatives of Marks and Spencer to discuss the closure of the Whitefriargate store. This conversation will be a follow up on my previous discussions with the store and, although I’m currently unable to say much about the content of the discussions, the people of Hull should rest assured that their three Labour MPs are working hard to find a solution to the issue that is in the interests of the shop’s workers, local residents and the future of Hull.
On Thursday, I will be holding my New Year Community Health Check to encourage people to get regular health checks and to promote health and wellbeing in Hull West and Hessle generally. The average life expectancy for Hull is nearly 2 years less than the national average of 80 and, in some of the poorer parts of the city it can be a lot lower. It’s vital that people get problems sorted early before they develop further and this event that my office has organised is designed to do just that. We currently have nearly 200 people signed up to come along to the event and I’m very much looking forward to attending.
On Friday, I will be in my constituency office meeting with constituents and assisting them with the issues they face.