Last Monday, around forty local people travelled together to London to take part in a trip to Parliament that I’d organised for constituents.
Visitors got a tour of Westminster from expert guides who were able to explain the long and complex development of our democracy. It’s certainly an interesting time to visit Parliament and, after the tour, constituents had the dubious pleasure of hearing Theresa May speak about her Brexit deal in the Commons.
Later in the day, I held a Q&A with constituents who spoke to me about important local and national issues. Brexit dominated discussion and I got the strong impression that visitors were as unconvinced by the Prime Minister’s statement as everyone else in the House! I told constituents that I’ll definitely be voting against the government’s Withdrawal Agreement, which clearly fails Labour’s six tests.
I was also asked about crime, which we know is on the rise as a result of Tory cuts to police funding. Since 2010 we’ve lost 21,000 officers, 17,000 police staff and 6,000 PCSOs so, sadly, it isn’t surprising that crime is rising at its fastest rate since 1992. It just isn’t possible to police on the cheap and I consistently speak out against cuts that are putting both officers and the public at risk.
Thanks to everyone who took part in the trip and I really enjoyed our conversations. I’m looking forward to organising another day out next year so stay tuned for updates.