NEWS THIS WEEK – from Diane Abbott, MP for Hackney North & Stoke Newington February 26 2016
26 Feb 2016David Cameron Dodges Questions on the NHS
With the news this week that Junior doctors have announced fresh strikes lasting six days and a legal challenge to Jeremy Hunt (see news story here) this week Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn concentrated on the NHS in Prime Minister’s Questions by:Pointing out that a staff survey shows morale in the health service is low and the Government’s refusal to do a deal with the BMA will not help with thisNoting that the NHS will spend £4bn on Agency staff this year and has spent just under £30 million on agency staff in the last nine months aloneUnfortunately, the Prime Minister chose to personally attack Jeremy rather than answer the questions. As Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary Heidi Alexander MP put it “Cameron dodged the questions but truth is he's wasted 9 months picking a fight with people who keep our NHS running.”
The Prime Minister announced the terms and date of a referendum on Britain’s EU membership thi week.
The #LabourINforBritain campaign will point out the positives brought by our continuing EU membership, including explaining how millions of British jobs are linked to our EU membership, £26.5 billion is invested in Britain by EU countries every year and British workers benefit from EU agreements on workers’ rights, including the right to holiday pay, paid maternity and paternity leave, anti-discrimination laws, equal pay and protection for agency workers.
Meanwhile, London Mayor Boris Johnson has announced that he will campaign for Britain to leave the EU. In response Pat Glass MP, Labour’s Shadow Europe Minister said: “This announcement says more about the Tory leadership contest and Boris’ own positioning than what is in the best interests of Britain,” concluding that “While the successors to David Cameron are positioning themselves, Labour will focus on what’s best for Britain - defending the jobs and rights protected by our EU membership.“You can see more information about the campaign athttp://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/inforbritain
#Democracysos - Over 600,000 people have dropped off the electoral register in the last year
This week saw the release of the Office of National Statistics electoral data, showing that over 600,000 people have dropped off the electoral register in the last year. There has been a shocking 40 per cent drop in 16-and 17-year-olds registering to vote.
Responding to the news, Gloria De Piero MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Young People and Voter Registration, said: “This is due to the Tory Government’s rushed changes to electoral registration, against the advice of the independent Electoral Commission who warned it would result in thousands of people falling off the electoral register,” adding that “This is another example of David Cameron and the Conservative Party trying to rig the system for their own political ends [and] is all further evidence of their partisan plan to give the Tories an unfair advantage at the expense of democracy.”