This week could potentially become one of the most significant in the Brexit process with Theresa May’s Government bringing the meaningful vote back to Parliament on Tuesday. What happens with the rest of the week is dependent on what the result of the Meaningful Vote is. I have therefore decided to slightly alter the usual structure of my ‘Week Ahead’ for this week in order to provide a more detailed picture of what my activities are likely to be. It is therefore split into what will happen if the meaningful vote does not pass and what will happen if it does. Anything that is not Brexit related will happen regardless of the result of the meaningful vote.
Meaningful Vote does not pass
As I mentioned earlier in this piece, the House of Commons will be voting on the Prime Minister’s deal on Tuesday. I did not support the Prime Minister’s deal last time it was put to Parliament and very little of substance has changed this time around. I will therefore not be supporting the Prime Minister’s deal on Tuesday.
If Parliament votes the Prime Minister’s deal down on Tuesday then there will be a further vote on Wednesday to decide whether the UK should leave the EU without a deal. I have previously spoken about how much a no deal Brexit would hurt Hull and I will therefore be voting to avoid this cliff edge.
If Parliament decides that we will not leave the EU without a deal then on Thursday, we will be voting on whether to extend article 50 to give us more time to negotiate a good deal with the EU. She has made a big deal of saying that she will get the UK out of the EU by the 29th March and it is a big failure that she has been unable to secure this but we must now face reality. With just one month to go in negotiations and the Prime Minister failing to make any progress in negotiations or to shift her red lines, it is clear that extension of Article 50 is now inevitable as there is simply not enough time to legislate for and deliver an orderly Brexit on 29th March. I will therefore be voting to extend article 50 and avoid a disastrous cliff edge Tory Brexit however I my support is conditional on the length of the extension.
Meaningful Vote Passes
On Monday, I will be meeting with First Group, the owners of Hull Trains and TransPennine Express. There are currently plans to allocate a number of new units of rolling stock to TransPennine Express in the coming months as well as one new unit to Hull Trains. Hull Trains are receiving their new unit in December 2019. I will be asking First Group whether it will be possible to allocate one of the earlier pieces of rolling stock to Hull Trains rather than TransPennine Express. I will keep you informed of the decision.
Later in the day, I will be attempting to ask a question in Education Questions. I will be focusing on school exclusions.
As well as the meaningful vote on Tuesday, I have been drawn for two questions in questions to the Justice Secretary. The topic of these questions will be 1) about the Ministry of Justice not paying the Living Wage to its staff and 2) the disparity of support services provided to someone who has been found not guilty and released after being held on remand and somebody who is released after serving a prison sentence. This is because of my constituent who was sleeping on the street after being released. I have spoken about him before here:https://www.theyworkforyou.com/debates/?id=2019-02-11b.595.2&s=speaker%3A25646#g596.0
After this, I will be meeting with the charity Endometriosis UK and the Schools Minister Nick Gibb to discuss the implementation of Menstrual Wellbeing in the new sex and relationship curriculum. 1 in 10 women in the UK will I was delighted that, after pressure that we put onto him, the Minister has decided to include Menstrual Wellbeing into the new SRE curriculum and look forward to working closely with him to ensure that positive effects are felt from the new lesson plans. I became involved in this after meeting my constituent Kate.
On Wednesday, the Chancellor will be delivering his Spring Statement. Under the Tories working people are worse off. The Government is out-of-touch, with no idea of the reality of people’s lives and no plan to improve them. I do not expect anything of significance to come from the Spring Statement that will make the lives of people living in Hull West and Hessle any easier. I envisage making a statement on Wednesday regarding the specific contents of the Spring Statement.
Later in the day, if there is not a vote on No Deal then I will be participating in a debate on Housing to argue for better regulation of rogue private landlords. There are 22,000 properties in Hull with a housing, health and social care rating hazard category of 1, the highest hazard rating that there is, and all these properties are in the private rented sector. The cost of repairing and removing these hazards is £23.5 million. I will be arguing that landlord licencing could help to solve this problem before it becomes a major issue.
On Thursday, if there is not a vote on extending article 50, I will be returning to the constituency. My meetings will include the Ergo Innovation Centre, MS3 Networks and the Hornsea Project for Offshore wind.
On Friday, my meetings will include visiting Vodafone at ResQ in Hull and Chief Superintendent Phil Ward of Humberside Police. I will also be holding my drop in surgery in Gipsyville Multipurpose Centre.