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Chamber-picture-2013-03-300x168.jpgMember of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South Bridget Phillipson has asked the Secretary of State for Justice Chris Grayling to come clean about the risks posed by his privatisation of the probation service.

Speaking at Justice Questions on 16 December, Bridget asked the Justice Secretary what steps he was taking to reduce reoffending.

The Minister confirmed that reoffending under the Conservative-led coalition remained ‘stubbornly high’. He argued that the government’s proposed reforms to rehabilitation services, which will open up the market to new providers, would provide the solution.
 
Bridget pressed the Minister on this point by asking about the risk that police intelligence will not be shared with the new providers he mentioned, which would hamper efforts to tackle reoffending and jeopardise public safety as a result.

The Minister dodged the question and refused to consider the possibility of any such risk arising.
 
Speaking after the debate, Bridget said:
 
“I am concerned that the Secretary of State for Justice has not properly considered the possible risks that will arise from his proposals to privatise the probation service.
 
Probation works best when the service has close relationships with prisons, councils, and others.
 
Public safety could be at risk if police intelligence is not shared between the police and the new companies.
 
Chris Grayling's non-answer to my question just goes to show that he has not properly considered the full impact of these
changes.
 
This is yet another example of the Conservative-led government’s determination to impose ideologically motivated privatisation without thinking about the potential consequences for the public.”

Bridget Phillipson MP presses Justice Secretary over risks to privatisation of probation service

Member of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South Bridget Phillipson has asked the Secretary of State for Justice Chris Grayling to come clean about the risks posed by his privatisation...

Bridget_Phillipson_Royal_Mail.jpegMember of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South, Bridget Phillipson has praised the hard work of the staff at Royal Mail delivery office in Houghton-le-Spring and passed on Christmas greetings and her support for their hard work during the Christmas period.

Christmas is the busiest time of year for postal workers.  Independent research commissioned by the Royal Mail found recently that 89 per cent of people still prefer to receive a traditional Christmas greetings card, while only 11 per cent favoured an electronic message or a social media one.
 
The research also found that people on average will send 17 cards this year, the same as the last two years.
 
With this research showing there is no let-up in the demand for sending greetings cards this Christmas, postal workers have a huge task to make sure everyone gets their cards on time.
 
Last week, Bridget visited the Houghton delivery office to observe first-hand the hard work and dedication of postal workers.
 
Speaking after the visit, Bridget said:
 
“It was great to have the opportunity to visit the Royal Mail Delivery Office in Houghton-le-Spring.
 
I was very interested to learn a bit more about the hard work done by postal workers, especially at this time of year when they are busiest.
 
It was also useful to learn of the hazards they face in making sure mail is delivered on time, from adverse weather conditions to risk they can face from dogs.
 
I want to thank all the postmen and women for their exceptional hard work. They do a really important job all year round, but particularly during the festive period when so many people are waiting for deliveries.
 
I want to wish them all the best for Christmas.”
 
Gerard Gilroy, Royal Mail Delivery Office Manager at Houghton-le-Spring, said:
 
“Our postmen and women are working extremely hard to deliver Christmas cards, letters and parcels to people across Bridget’s constituency.

We are grateful that Bridget visited the office to see our operations and to support the team during our busiest time of year.

We’d like to remind out customers to post early so that friends and family have longer to enjoy their Christmas greetings."

The last recommended posting dates for Christmas are:

Second Class – Thursday 18th December
First Class – Saturday 20th December
Special Delivery – Tuesday 23rd December

Bridget Phillipson MP pays tribute to postal workers at busiest time of year

Member of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South, Bridget Phillipson has praised the hard work of the staff at Royal Mail delivery office in Houghton-le-Spring and passed on Christmas greetings...


backing_zero_point_seven_percent_05-12-14.jpgBridget Phillipson, Member of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South, has voted in favour of a Private Member's Bill to enshrine Britain’s 0.7% aid commitment in law.

Last Friday (12th December) in the House of Commons, MPs were asked to vote on the Report Stage and Third Reading of a Bill tabled by Michael Moore MP that, if passed, could lead to enshrining in law that the UK government will spend 0.7% of Gross National Income (GNI) on Overseas Development Assistance.
 
The vote was passed by 145 votes to 5 in favour of the Bill. The Bill will now proceed to the House of Lords.
 
Speaking after the vote, Bridget Phillipson MP said:
 
“British aid really does make a huge difference to millions of people worldwide, and I am proud that the Labour party has led the way in development.  
 
The last Labour government helped set the UK on course to meet this historic commitment to aid spending. Both coalition parties made commitments in their 2010 manifestoes to legislate on this issue during this Parliament.Since the 2010 General Election my Labour colleagues and I have kept up the pressure on the government to ensure they kept those promises.
 
Thanks to the support of so many MPs, the Bill will now move on to the House of Lords, and I hope that it will become law.”

Bridget Phillipson MP votes for legislation in favour of 0.7% British aid spend

Bridget Phillipson, Member of Parliament for Houghton and Sunderland South, has voted in favour of a Private Member's Bill to enshrine Britain’s 0.7% aid commitment in law.


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