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HUW MERRIMAN MP NEWSLETTER
2nd July 2020

Covid-19 update: 2 Metre Rule Relaxed

The easing of lockdown continues and last week the Prime Minister announced that non-essential businesses will reopen and, crucially for these, the 2-metre social distancing rule has been relaxed to a “one metre plus” rule.  Two households of any size will also be allowed to meet in any setting and the Government will ask people to follow the guidance on social distancing, rather than legislation, and to use their common sense.  
As long as the five tests continue to be met, further changes to the lockdown restrictions will be made.

You can read the Prime Minister's statement in full here.

Social Distancing on Public Transport

With the economy set to restart, I asked the Prime Minister whether he would look again at the social distancing rule if the demand for travel on public transport requires it.

Watch his response here.
East Sussex MPs Update

For our East Sussex MPs fortnightly meeting we invited our ⁦East Sussex County Council leader, Keith Glazier, to discuss transport for the South East and infrastructure plans to invest in our county. 
Climate Change Virtual Lobby

The Climate Coalition is a group of 140 organisations including the National Trust, RSPB, Women’s Institute and Greenpeace, who advocate for climate action.
I joined a virtual lobby with 25 local residents to discuss reforms to transport, planning, nature and how we can deliver a greener planet.
Transport Committee Update

As part of the Transport Select Committee's inquiry, Coronavirus: Implications for Transport, the Committee took evidence from the Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps. 

Watch the session here.
Bexhill Chamber of Commerce

A lively discussion on the reopening of our high streets with the Chamber. Particular focus on Western Road temporary pedestrianisation; should we look at a different and safer shopping offer or stick to the car and how we’ve always operated?
Support for Businesses after Covid-19

It’s vital that we support all of our local businesses who have either reopened or are readying themselves. The  Business and Planning Bill was rushed through this week to ensure that our planning and licensing laws will be flexible enough to allow for businesses to operate.  I urged Ministers to send a signal that planners should be encouraged to use any remaining discretion in favour of businesses so that reopening is not made more difficult.

Watch here.
Campaigning for Hospital Modernisation

Caroline Ansell, Maria Caulfield, Nusrat Ghani, Sally-Ann Hart and I took our case to the Prime Minister for hospitals in Eastbourne, Hastings and Bexhill to be upgraded and modernised. I hope our campaign will succeed and that our hospital buildings will receive further investment from our Government.
 
Campaigning for BBC regional coverage to remain 

As Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for the BBC, I held a meeting with more than 50 cross-party MPs lobbying BBC management to support regional political coverage and local current affairs. A very positive exchange.
Misuse of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Another chance to speak up for the aviation workforce and highlight British Airways treatment of staff. Thanks to the Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, Therese Coffey, for strong words on the correct intent of the furlough scheme.

Watch here.
E-scooters Trial

This week the Transport Select Committee has looked into the use of e-scooters. Despite widespread use, they are banned on our pavements and roads. Our report will decide if the Government is right to lift the ban on e-scooters on the road only.

Watch my question to the Secretary of State here.
Read more about our inquiry here.
Domestic Abuse

The Domestic Abuse Bill comes back to Parliament next week. This week I chaired a meeting for the domestic abuse prevention sector, MPs and NHS leaders to explore how we can detect early signs through the healthcare system.
Local Fire Service Consultation 

I’ve given my view; this does not appear to be the right time and it concerns me that the service in the constituency could be reduced. I’m now seeking a response.

Read 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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