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HUW MERRIMAN MP NEWSLETTER
30th July 2020

Covid-19 update: 

Encouragingly for 3 weeks now, the number of new cases identified through testing each day has been below 1,000 and the R rate remains between 0.7 and 0.9. The number of infections is shrinking by between 5 and 1 per cent every day.

Wearing a face covering has, however, become mandatory in shops and supermarkets with fines of up to £100 if people do not comply.

Local authorities have also been given new powers and to enable them to act more quickly in response to outbreaks.

Government has increasingly been lifting the remaining national measures so we can get back to something closer to normal life.

For the latest shielding and distancing guidance visit here.

Plan for Jobs

The Chancellor has launched a £30 billion 'Plan for Jobs', with more than 10,500 jobs supported in the constituency as part of the Government’s plan to support businesses, create jobs and give young people the opportunity of a better start. 

Read more here.
Government's new green initiatives

The Government is following up on it's election pledge to improve the environment and reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Read here for the latest announcements.
 
Helping hospitality to reopen

I asked Robert Jenrick whether the Government would consider making it easier for cafes and pubs to put up temporary structures for the summer season. 

Watch his answer here.
Mogg to the Rescue 

Despite the support from 150 MPs, my debate on redundancies in the aviation sector could not be found a slot before recess. I asked my former seating companion from the back-benches, Jacob Rees Mogg, for some help.

Watch in full here.
MPs meeting with Sussex Modern 

Every fortnight, the East Sussex MPs meet; often with a guest or theme. For our latest meeting, we discussed culture and the arts. We were joined by Sussex Modern, who have cultural venues across our constituencies. We discussed how we could support their finances and plans to re-open.
 
Fairtrade APPG and Nestle

Nestle have announced that they are to stop sourcing Fairtrade cocoa and sugar, resulting in farmers losing thousands every year. This decision will have a terrible impact at the most challenging of times. 

I was also delighted to congratulate the winners of the Bexhill Fairtrade "Find the Fairtrade Bear" competition recently which was organised by our fantastic Bexhill Fairtrade Committee. Read more here
 
Bexhill Observer

Parliament has now risen for the summer recess. In my Observer column I look back at events in Parliament in the final weeks.

Read it here.

Coronavirus Cases in my Area

This tracker on the government website provides information on covid-19 cases. The BBC also provides up to date information on a weekly basis which you can access here. If you have symptoms of COVID-19 you need to get tested.
Campaigning for BBC Regions

Like many constituents, I rely on the local news and political coverage from BBC South East. Many of these journalists from the Tunbridge Wells studio are at risk of redundancy. I chaired a further meeting with MPs across England and Helen Thomas, Director of BBC England, who listened to our concerns.
Schools need to reopen

During a novel debate, which was held in a Select Committee room due to Westminster Hall being closed, I made the case for young people and the re-opening of schools in September. It is vital that pupils do not miss out on further valuable time in the classroom.

Watch my speech here.
Eat Out to Help Out

The Chancellor has urged the public to ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ with a new voucher scheme which will entitle everyone to a discount of up to 50% on their meal, up to a maximum of £10 per person, on Monday - Wednesday throughout August. 

Read more here.
BBC licence fee changes

An Urgent Question was granted to discuss the cessation of the free BBC licence fee for over 75s, programming and job losses. I focused on the cuts to regional political and current affairs coverage.I know that many residents rely on these services to keep up with local events.

Watch here.
 
Transport Committee Update

We have examined the recently announced rental e-scooter trial scheme and the future role of e-scooters in the UK transport mix. 

In another session, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, gave evidence exploring the issues facing Transport for London as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Watch the session with the Mayor here.
Affordable childcare during school holidays

Having received correspondence from keyworkers who are struggling to find summer schools which offer affordable childcare over the summer holidays, I wrote to the Director of Children's services in East Sussex and the Education Secretary for information on what local provision has been put in place.
 
Inshore Trawling Ban

I have written to the Secretary of State for Defra to ask him to sign a byelaw to ban inshore trawling in Sussex Waters. I lobbied hard with local stakeholders to get the Beachy Head East Marine Conservation Zone designated last year.This will protect precious our local marine habitat, such as sea kelp, to improve fisheries and the natural environment.  Nationally, I am supportive of the campaign to ban supertrawlers and the Fisheries Bill going through Parliament will allow the UK to do that at the end of the Brexit transition period. Read more here

 

If you would like to arrange an appointment to speak to me at an advice surgery, please email: huw.merriman.mp@parliament.uk or call 01424 736861
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