Weekly Round-Up :: 26 May 2023

On Monday, I joined Keir Starmer in Braintree, as a member of the Shadow Health team, to share Labour’s vision for an NHS fit for the 21st century. This year the service will be 75 years old. If we are to secure the next 75 years, we must rethink how we provide services to people.

Labour’s ten-year ambition for the NHS and social care system are unashamedly ambitious. Like with the last Labour Government, we inherited an NHS that was struggling. But we turned it around that’s because we know that ambition is vital for securing healthcare for all.

We will bring about three fundamental reforms to make the NHS work for you.

1. Change so that more people get care at home in their community.
2. Securing the workforce we need in the healthcare system, with modern technology to deliver the patient outcomes we all want.
3. Refocussing the NHS to prevention instead of cure.

A quick train journey to London from Braintree allowed me to join the MillionPlus parliamentary roundtable to discuss the future of nursing. Speaking at the event allowed me to share our vision and hear from those on the frontline on how we can harness best practice and look at innovative ways of training the workforce of the future.

As many of you know, I support the Dignity in Dying campaign to allow choice at the end of life. It was a pleasure to welcome, as Co-Chair, Prue Leith to Parliament who is a great supporter. It was an event that provided the opportunity for families to meet with MPs who are supportive and undecided about whether the law needs to change.

I was delighted to be re-elected Chair of the Women’s Parliamentary Labour Party. Labour has made great strides in this area – indeed 52% of the Parliamentary Labour Party are women. But more still must be done. I’m keen to ensure that we increase the 44% of candidates who have been selected being women to 50%.

On Wednesday, I popped in to a reception hosted by the Youth Sport Trust. They were encouraging more schools to sign up for their National School Sports Week. The aim of their campaign is to ensure all children are active for 60 minutes a day – in line with the Chief Medical Officers advice. And what better way to do that than with a national sports day. It takes place between 19 June to 25 June. Currently, no schools in Bristol South have signed up so if anyone wants their school to sign up click the link to learn more!

On Thursday, I spoke in the Urgent Question secured by Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, Yvette Cooper, on the new immigration figures. I put it to the minister that the Tories continues to badly managed immigration.

We have people stuck in hotels across the country. It’s appalling for those waiting for a decision & is a huge cost to taxpayers. This is all because the Tories cannot clear the asylum backlog they created.

Then, during Business of the House statement, I raised my recent meeting with Action Greater Bedminster and how the housing crisis won’t be fixed if the Government doesn’t fix Primary Healthcare and improve public services. I’m clear: we need to build more homes. Decent homes which tackle climate change, give people a chance to put down roots and become a member of the community and drive our local economic growth. But none of that will be achieved if schools are full, you can’t get a GP appointment and our public transport is on its knees. I hope the Leader of the House listened carefully to my request for the Health and Levelling Up departments to work closely together and fix the shambles of our public services.

If there are issues you want to raise with me as your local MP, please get in touch by emailing karin.smyth.mp@parliament.uk or by calling 0117 953 3575.