Mary Creagh

Working hard for Wakefield

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Mary was delighted to meet with representatives from the UK Youth Parliament in Wakefield, and to support their campaign for votes at 16. 


YouthParliament.jpgMary met with Abi Tandy, MYP for Wakefield West, Daniel Britton, MYP for Wakefield East, Bushra Mahmood, Salma Afzal, Matthew Lightowler, Umar Aziz, and Ibrahim Aziz, who are Youth Councillors for Wakefield West, and Conor Atkinson, Youth Councillor for Wakefield East.  

Mary meets with UK Youth Parliament representatives

Mary was delighted to meet with representatives from the UK Youth Parliament in Wakefield, and to support their campaign for votes at 16. 

The horrific events of 22 March have cast a dark shadow over Parliament. The assault on Westminster targeted democracy itself and cost 5 innocent people their lives. I would like to thank everyone who sent messages of solidarity and support afterwards. Those of us caught up in the horror of that day glimpsed the worst of humanity.  But we also saw the very best of people- the professionalism of ambulance workers, doctors and nurses rushing to help the injured, passers-by offering comfort and the heroism of the police whose response saved countless lives and kept us safe.

Last Monday saw the funeral of PC Keith Palmer, who was killed protecting Parliament. The thousands of police officers lining the route and the heartbreaking floral tribute to ‘No1 Daddy’ show how loved PC Palmer was as a husband, father, and friend. I know the thoúghts of everyone in Wakefield are with his family and friends and those of the other victims.

Keith, and the other brave officers who work in parliament, are not faceless people to MPs and the staff who work there. They are men and women who stop for a chat and a joke and who keep us safe at work.  Keith’s name, his courage and sacrifice, will never be forgotten.

The Government’s announcement that the 18-week NHS target for operations is to be downgraded is wrong. It means patients in Wakefield will wait longer for hip, knee and cataract operations.  The target has not been met since February 2016. Rather than address the chronic under-funding in our NHS, the Government are trying to move the goalposts.

I recently had the pleasure of speaking at the Wakefield Rotary Club and hearing about some of the fantastic work they are involved with.  Since 1979, Rotarians have helped to immunise more than 2.5 billion children against polio in 122 countries!

Locally, they have funded 2 Admiral Nurses, who support carers of those suffering with dementia. The Rotary Club shows what can be achieved when people work together for positive change.

I have long supported plans for a new community stadium for Wakefield Trinity and I welcome the developments announced by Council Leader Peter Box last week.

I am glad the developer is moving towards a new multi-lateral agreement which will include the Council and get things moving forward. Rugby league is at the heart of sport in Wakefield. I want to make sure Wakefield Trinity has a suitable ground that will allow them to compete and succeed in the Super League.

Finally, despite her many statements that there should be no election till 2020, the Prime Minister has now called an unnecessary early general election. She has triggered Brexit, but is now wasting time on an election. She is acting, as always, in the best interests of the Tory party, not Britain.

I will be standing on my record as your MP - standing up for Wakefield. I have delivered investment in the city’s Westgate and Kirkgate train stations, new flood defences, a new hospital, saved King St walk-in centre and have helped countless local people find homes, and a school for their child.

It is vital for the health of any democracy that there is an effective opposition. Wakefield needs a strong voice to stand up against the Tories’ plans for hard Brexit and to protect our NHS, schools, police and council services which are facing their worst crises in a generation.

Wakefield Express Column April 2017

The horrific events of 22 March have cast a dark shadow over Parliament. The assault on Westminster targeted democracy itself and cost 5 innocent people their lives. I would like...

Published in the Daily Mail, 4 March 2017 

 

Those of us of a certain age will feel a tinge of excitement at talk of a return to bottle deposit schemes.

As a youngster I took empty pop bottles back to the shop for pennies. I also remember the early-morning clink of empties as the milkman finished his round.

Long before recycling was fashionable, Britain had common sense systems like these for reusing empties. Deposit schemes and recycled glass bottles, driven on an electric float. What a shame we have lost them!

Drinks companies ditched deposit schemes and replaced reusable glass with disposable plastic to boost profits. Milk rounds went the same way, as supermarkets put loss-leading milk in plastic bottles.

Most of the hundreds of millions of tonnes of plastic produced in the world each year is used only once. Products may be cheaper, but we're paying the price of the environmental catastrophe this is causing.

Plastic bottles litter our towns and countryside, collect in our rivers and end up in the sea. If things carry on, experts fear there could be more pieces of plastic in the sea than fish by 2050. Plastic also finds its way on to our dinner plates in seafood as discarded bottles break up in the sea into particles swallowed by sea life.

We can all do our bit by switching to reusable water bottles. But, more importantly, the drinks industry must take responsibility.

Parliament also needs to look at what Government can do. That's why the Commons' cross-party green watchdog the Environmental Audit Committee, which I chair, is launching an inquiry today looking at the problem of plastic bottles and other disposable drinks containers like coffee cups.

We've already examined the build-up of plastic in the ocean and secured a ban on toxic plastic microbeads with the help of the Daily Mail. I pay tribute to the Mail whose campaign on single use plastic bags also forced the Government to change track. Now the Mail's Take Back Your Bottles campaign has put plastic bottle waste on the agenda.

Our committee will examine solutions like deposit schemes. And we will ask drinks companies what they are doing to reduce waste and boost recycling.

Deposit schemes saved resources and kept streets clean. We will look at whether we should reintroduce them. If Government and industry listen, together we can turn back the tide of plastic choking our seas.

 

ENDS.

We can turn back tide of plastic that chokes seas

Published in the Daily Mail, 4 March 2017 


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