This week we saw yet more political divide from Conservatives as the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, made comments that our asylum system is broken. In response to this we must ask, given the Conservatives have been in power for 12 years, how can it be anyone's fault but theirs?
The Home Secretary’s record on asylum speaks for itself:
Just 4% of people arriving by small boats in the last year have had their asylum claim processed
The Rwanda deal was expensive and cost the taxpayer £140 million. Yet zero people have so far gone to Rwanda.
Manston Airfield refugee centre, built to house 1,600 people at most, is now dangerously overcrowded with reportedly more than 4,000 people being kept there.
This simply isn’t good enough. The Conservatives have had four Prime Ministers in five years and 12 years in Government, but the Tories still can't fix a single problem. All they do is pass the blame.
We must see action being taken. Labour has a real plan to deal with the asylum system, starting with a competent Home Secretary.
We will scrap the Rwanda gimmick. We will crack down on smuggling gangs. We will end the small boats crossings. We will speed up asylum claims and agree an international deal.
To do this, we need a general election and a Labour Government now.
Meeting the team at Four Dwellings Primary School
This week I had the pleasure of meeting headteacher, Michelle Court, and her team at Four Dwellings Primary School in Quinton. We had the opportunity to speak about all the steps and interventions she has introduced since becoming the headteacher back in March and about the journey the school is taking.
It was wonderful to see the improvement being made to raise learning and attainment for all pupils as well as starting to build a real sense of community within school. I was pleased to see and hear about the parent workshops the school is hosting as well as the mentoring programme that has been put in place.
It was extremely positive to see the strives being made and look forward to visiting again soon.
Improving active travel across our constituency
It was great to join the cabinet member for transport at Birmingham City Council, Cllr Liz Clements, the West Midlands Combined Authority’s Walking and Cycling Commissioner, Adam Tranter and Quinton Councillor, Lauren Rainbow, to discuss current active travel provision.
This is part of the work I am doing looking at provision across the whole constituency and follows a similar meeting I had earlier this year in Harborne with Councillors Jayne Francis and Martin Brooks.
For us to try and prevent climate change, we must look at all aspects of how we live our everyday lives. With transport, this means getting out of the car and using alternative modes of transport. However, to allow people to do this, we must first improve the reliability of public transport and make it safer for people who would like to walk and cycle.
That’s why I was so pleased to meet with Liz and Adam this week to look at how the bike network links up across the constituency and where we can work together to make the widescale improvements needed for this to become an everyday feature in people’s lives.
Watch this space!
Birmingham goes to consultation on the Local Plan
Birmingham City Council is to begin a six-week public consultation on the Birmingham Local Plan Issues and Options Document from Monday 24th October 2022.
What does that mean you say?
This new document will guide planning decisions for the whole city on development and regeneration activity up to 2042. It will set out how housing, employment provision and infrastructure will be developed and the type of places and environments that will be created.
The Issues and Options Document is the first stage in the process of developing the Birmingham Local Plan. The Council is therefore inviting you to share your views and comments as part of a formal public consultation. Your comments will be carefully considered and used, along with evidence, to inform the next stage of the Local Plan.
The consultation will close on Monday 5th December 2022.
Calling all local businesses!
Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) is inviting you to Better Your Business on 17th November 2022.
The event is being held at Birmingham City University’s STEAMHouse building from 10.00am-4.00pm and is free to attend. It will offer opportunities to connect, discover and access business support that will help your business to grow.
The keynote speaker is Birmingham-born Michelin-star chef and successful restaurateur Glynn Purnell. He will share his business journey to date, highlighting how he has managed the impact of major challenges in the hospitality industry such as the Covid-19 pandemic, upskilling, inflation and rising energy costs. Joining Glynn will also be an impressive line-up of business support specialists from GBSLEP’s Growth Hub, digital marketing and SEO experts Ian Lockwood and Paul Ince and GBSLEP’s partners from across the region at an all-day exhibition.
Preet Kaur Gill MP
Birmingham Edgbaston covering Bartley Green, Edgbaston, Harborne and Quinton