Before Parliament broke up for the summer recess, I held a debate on the tragic deaths of Bobby and Christi Shepherd, and the shameful lack of regulation on carbon monoxide safety across Europe.
When parents take their children on holiday, they want to know that their family is safe. Carbon monoxide is a silent killer, and there are currently no common carbon monoxide safety standards in tourism accommodation across Europe, or any data collection about deaths from carbon monoxide poisoning. We need to see reform at both UK and EU level. Linda McAvan, Labour MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber, has been pushing for new laws on carbon monoxide detectors, and new regulations on the installation and maintenance of fuel burning appliances. However the UK Government is claiming that there is no need for reform.
Nothing will bring back Bobby and Christi, but their parents’ dearest wish is to spare other families the heartbreak they have suffered. I intend to hold a conference in parliament during Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week in November, where hotel industry groups, victims and Thomas Cook will discuss the changes we need. Over the months ahead I will be campaigning for improved safety standards across Europe, to ensure that this tragedy is never repeated.
On 16 July I joined Horbury Academy Year 8 students at Wakefield Library, where they took part in a project called ‘Mission Survive’. Each team had to come up with an idea to improve Wakefield, focusing on housing, transport, waste management, community cohesion and the inner city.
Schools across Wakefield are participating in the project, and in the autumn the winning entry will be chosen by Wakefield District Housing and other organisations in the area. I wish them all the best of luck!
Last Saturday I attended an anti-fascist demonstration, unifying under the name ‘We are Wakefield’. This was organised in response to the National Front’s march through Wakefield. The racism of far-right organisations like the National Front has no place in Wakefield, and no place in 21st century Britain. I was proud that so many people turned out in the city to show their solidarity with the silent majority of decent people who want a peaceful and tolerant society.
On 17 and 18 July our Muslim friends and neighbours celebrated Eid. I would like to wish everyone in Wakefield a belated Eid Mubarak!
Please contact my constituency office on 386124 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to find out more about any of these stories, or if you would like to receive my regular e-newsletter.