Keeping in touch - May 2021

Paul Blomfield MP
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It was great to get out and meet constituents this month as coronavirus restrictions eased. We've seen significant local elections, a new session of Parliament with the Government setting out their programme in the Queen's Speech, and I've launched a campaign against sexual harassment. As ever, do let me have your feedback and stay in touch. Best wishes, Paul

Challenging sexual harassment

As the hospitality sector started to open again, I launched a campaign with The Star and other partners to challenge sexual harassment faced by staff or customers. Bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes, hotels and clubs can sign up here.
Fire safety campaign continues

I spoke twice on the Fire Safety Bill, trying to secure protection for leaseholders. Although the Bill was whipped through unamended, I will continue to campaign for justice through the new Building Safety Bill.

Calling for action on Palestine

I pressed the Foreign Secretary for action after attacks on protesters outside the Al Aqsa mosque and escalating conflict with Gaza, having previously coordinated a letter from Sheffield Labour MPs on evictions in East Jerusalem. See more here.

International students

I was re-elected Co-Chair (with CBI President Lord Bilimoria) of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for International Students and chaired a meeting on the issues faced as we come out of the pandemic.

Weston Park Cancer Centre

I joined SCR Mayor Dan Jarvis at a meeting with Health Secretary Matt Hancock to press for £50m investment for refurbishment, new treatments and research - following our cross-party letter in March.

Asylum and immigration

I spoke in a debate about the quality of refugee housing, challenging Ministers on plans for wider use of 'detention centres', and met with local campaigners against Government proposals on asylum.

I met Universities Minister Michelle Donelan with the All-Party Parliamentary Universities Group and caught up with the Vice-Chancellors of both our universities on issues facing the sector.

New plan for social care

With just nine words on social care in this year's Queen's Speech, I pressed Ministers for a radical new approach - and an honest debate on how it is funded.

Challenging late action on 'Indian variant'

I pressed the Health Secretary Matt Hancock on how Boris Johnson's desperation to secure a post-Brexit trade deal held back 'red listing' India - in contrast with Pakistan and Bangladesh. See more here.

Brexit impact

As a member of the UK Trade and Business Commission I joined evidence sessions on the impact of the Brexit deal on the important food and drink and financial services sectors.

Action on hate crime

I convened a cross-sector meeting to agree an action plan following recent attacks on Chinese residents. See more here.

Kick gambling ads out of football

As part of my support for action on gambling addiction, and particularly harm to children and young people, I wrote in The Star on banning gambling ads from football. See my opinion piece here.

Welcoming Hong Kong residents

I met new residents who have come to Sheffield under the BN(O) visa scheme, introduced after China's repression in Hong Kong, at a meeting organised by the Lai Yin Association.

Community notices

Support for victims of domestic abuse: 08088082241 is the Sheffield helpline (open Mondays to Fridays 8am-7pm & Saturdays 9am-5pm) and 08082000247 offers support nationally 24/7.

Nether Edge and Sharrow Foodbank: Supporting vulnerable people in the area, this recently established project is fundraising to continue their work providing food packs. Please donate here.

WEST bursaries: Women in Engineering, Science and Technology is a local trust providing bursaries to young women. Read more and apply here.

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