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My Weekly Update - 24 November

This week, the Chancellor unveiled his Autumn Statement, lifting the lid on thirteen years of economic failure.


Growth has been revised down next year, the year after that, and the year after that too. The UK economy would now be £150bn bigger if it had continued to grow at the same rate as when Labour was in power post 2010.


It's also been confirmed that the worst is yet to come for mortgage-holders. Those re-mortgaging since July have seen their payments rocket by an average of £220 every month. In Birmingham Edgbaston, the Tory mortgage penalty is estimated to take £2,600 out of the pockets of families. Next year, 1.5 million families across the UK will face a similar rate.


It’s clear that after 13 years of Tory incompetence, the economy simply isn’t working. And, despite all the promises made in this week’s Autumn Statement, working people are still worse off. Household incomes will still be 3.5% lower next year in real terms than pre-pandemic, the biggest hit to living standards on record.


Labour is now the party of fiscal responsibility, and we are the only party with a plan to make working people better off.


It is Labour who have set the agenda for growth. We will:

  • Encourage investment into British start up and scale up firms

  • Introduce measures to ensure the consolidation of pension funds so that our pension system gets better returns for British pensioners and for the UK economy.

  • Get Britain building again with a once in a generation set of reforms to accelerate the building of our country’s critical infrastructure and to build housing too.

  • Fast-track battery factories, our life sciences, and 5G technology to grow our economy and provide good jobs in every part of our country.

  • Through our National Wealth Fund, we will work alongside the private sector to back the growth of British industries so that we make that crucial transition to a lower carbon economy.

 

In Parliament

This week in Parliament, I raised the Immensa false negatives scandal.

While these private providers were being fast-tracked, high quality diagnostic services such as those at the University of Birmingham were being wound down.


You’d think that a private company awarded over £100 million of public money would be held to high standards. But Immensa missed 40,000 Covid cases, leading to over 20 deaths.


I asked the Government who has taken responsibility for these failings, and will they get our money back?

 

BHTA

It was wonderful to speak at the BHTA event. They play a vital role in supporting companies in the Health Tech industry.


I really enjoyed the chance to set out Labour’s commitment to develop a comprehensive NHS innovation and adoption strategy working with industry, patients and ICSs.

 

ASH Report

It was great to speak at the Action on Smoking and Health, Alcohol Health Alliance, and Obesity Health Alliance’s joint report launch.


A prevention revolution will be crucial to tackling health inequalities across the UK. That’s why Labour has committed to establishing a health mission delivery board to bring together all departments with an influence over the social determinants of health – a mission accountability body akin to the Climate Change Committee – to drive progress across our society, not just through the NHS.

 

Telecoms Infrastructure

This week, I wrote to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities on behalf of my constituents who contacted me about a 20m 5G mast in War Lane, Harborne, being erected by EE and Three.


They objected, I objected, and the Council rejected the application. But the mast has gone up regardless. I asked the Government why Local Authorities don't have powers to decide where these masts are placed.

 

Priory Hospital Woodbourne

This week, I wrote to the Priory Group to register my concerns in light of the death of a young patient who was hit by a train and tragically died after escaping from the Priory Hospital Woodborne in Harborne.


I asked the Priory Group how this was able to happen on their watch.

 

Local News


West Midlands Police

This week, the West Midlands Police were put under an enhanced level of monitoring. You can read my statement below:


“It’s very disappointing to hear that West Midlands Police has been moved into an enhanced level of monitoring by HMIC. Of course, the issues raised by the investigation are very concerning, and make clear that the force needs significant improvement.


“I met with the new Chief Constable, Craig Guildford, yesterday, and have confidence that he will prioritise tackling the issues raised by this investigation. I have already seen positive transformations happen under Craig’s leadership thus far, such as in the significant improvement in response time to 999 and 101 calls.

“The public have got to have confidence in the police. That’s why I am committed to working with the Chief Constable and West Midlands Police to restore trust in the police to its highest levels.”


M5, Junction 3


From 4th December, works are set to begin on junction 3 of the M5. National highways have said that they’ll make every effort to ensure the impact on the local community and travelling public is kept to a minimum, although there are set to be road closures.


Follow the link for further details:




National Lottery Awards For All


From now on, community projects in England will be able to apply funding through the National Lottery Awards for all between £300 and £20,000 to support their projects for up to two years, an increase from the current £10,000 over one year.


For more info:

MHRC


Next week, the Mobile Household Recycling Centre will be visiting Hillside Close, B32 4LS, in Bartley Green on Wednesday 29th November.The centre will be open between 7am and 12:30pm, so please come along if you're local and have bulky household waste to dispose of.


Best wishes,






Preet Kaur Gill MP

Birmingham Edgbaston covering Bartley Green, Edgbaston, Harborne and Quinton


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