any occasions where I’ll be critical of the way UK aid is spent and where it’s sent. However, UK Education for Change which I saw in Bangladesh last month are doing some great work.
Large numbers of Bangladeshi girls are forced into child labour and are denied basic education. UK Education for Change works to change this. Quite a touching moment communicating with some of the girls and their parents via an interpreter about how their lives have been changed for the better.
Bangladesh is a fast developing country with increasing influence and of course a Commonwealth country with which we have strong ties.
There is a need for an aid budget but it needs to work in accordance with British interests and should also ideally be linked to increasing trade and Investment. Clearly morally it’s important the aid goes to where’s its really needed. Not to countries that don’t need it and which aren’t allies with which we have close links!
Pleased about this response from the National Lottery Heritage Fund about Broomhill Lido. The £3.4 million they committed to the Broomhill Lido project is still in place despite the Levelling Up Fund setback.
Meetings will be taking place soon regarding other funding avenues to bridge the shortfall. I will continue to provide updates. We’re not giving up.
Visited the New Skill Centre today to see their SEN school and meet with headteacher Mark Winston. I visited their centre for adults the other week, and it was great to hear about all the work they do for young people as well at their school. When I visited, they were having a “Paws for Thought” day to raise money for the Blue Cross charity.
The centre only opened in September 2019, and their building, a former church, originally had no classrooms. They’re off to a great start. Since opening, they’ve grown enormously and have already got a good all round Ofsted rating.
The NSC supports students aged 11-19 with complex needs like autism, some of whom have been out of school for many years. They help many students who have suffered trauma causing social issues, not just those with SEND. Post-16 students do placements and often help teach younger students.
NSC has classes of about 3-4 students in a nurturing environment, offering a full GCSE curriculum. Within a short space of time, their students make progress in interpersonal skills and confidence. 95% of students’ places are commissioned by local authority, and they’re very strict on having only students suitable to the environment. They’re independent but subscribe to the funding structure for SEN pupils, giving them more freedom to manage the school and funding.
During my visit, I met James, a post-16 student who has progressed hugely and is now going for a work placement. After two years here, he’s off to Suffolk New College to study business. It was great to learn about how much progress he’s made and hear about his future plans.
I also got to see the design and technology workshops. They have a 3-D printer and CAD software, and I saw some of the impressive projects the students have worked on.
The school also works closely with parents, gives confidence and breaks down barriers. I met Emma Mirams, the assistant head who is also in charge of mental health and pastoral care, and learned about the kind of extra support they offer.
The school is off to a great start, and I look forward to seeing them continue to grow and support more young people.
In June 2016, Ipswich voted overwhelmingly to leave the EU. One of the biggest advantages of leaving the EU is the ability for the UK to control our borders again – I am committed to upholding this.
By contrast, the Labour Party – dominated by the London elite – tried to block Brexit and are now frustrating all attempts to control immigration.
As your MP, I have strongly opposed the use of the Novotel Hotel to house asylum seekers. I led a special debate in Parliament and have raised this issue every week in Parliament since the news broke. I’m appalled at the way in which some of my constituents have been treated by their employer, NOVOTEL. I’m also very worried about the impact this is having on the local economy.
Ipswich has a proud record of welcoming genuine refugees from around the world who are fleeing persecution. The Homes for Ukraine scheme has been a particularly inspirational example of this. We should be proud of being such a welcoming Town, but what’s going on at the Novotel is wrong on many different levels. We need to be tough but fair in distinguishing between those who are genuinely fleeing persecution and those who have chosen a route to illegally enter our country from another safe European country. I am committed to putting a stop to this.
The PM has announced new plans to use cheaper accommodation sites, so we can move migrants out of expensive hotels, saving the taxpayer money. We will identify a range of alternative sites such as disused holiday parks, former student halls and surplus military land, working with local authorities to ensure everyone takes their fair share.
Labour have bitterly opposed everything I’ve been looking to achieve on this issue. Labour’s London based leader has ordered Labour MPs to consistently vote against the Government’s plans to control immigration. Whether that would be through opposing the Rwanda scheme, voting against the Nationality and Borders Act, or defending freedom of movement at all costs throughout his leadership campaign. Even locally, the Labour candidate has never supported any attempt to tackle illegal immigration and instead has made multiple trips to the migrant camp in Calais. It’s clear that Labour don’t want to control immigration.
I have been one of the most vocal MPs in Parliament on the issue of tackling illegal immigration. My record speaks for itself. We cannot go back to a policy of low-wage, low-skilled uncontrolled immigration. That’s why, I would love to hear your views about immigration.