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Darren calls for residents to sign petition to keep Post Office open

The Post Office at 155 Crow Lane, Henbury, is due to close today. Local residents have mounted a campaign to ensure it reopens ass soon as possible. You can support them by signing this petition.

Darren had this to say about the Post Office closure:

I know this branch is a much-valued community facility and that the closure will have a negative impact on local residents, particularly those who don’t have the money, mobility or transport to visit other branches/banks.

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Darren congratulates Marvin and his team for Bristol making Channel 4 shortlist

Channel 4 have started looking for cities to host their new national headquarters. Thanks to the work of Bristol City Council, led by Labour’s Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees, Bristol are on the shortlist. On Facebook, Darren congratulated Marvin:

Great news! Well done to Marvin Rees and the team for getting us this far. Now to secure Channel 4 in Bristol!

You can read more about the shortlist here: https://www.theguardian.com/media/2018/may/30/channel-4-cities-national-hq-birmingham-manchester-glasgow-liverpool-leeds.

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Darren backs local schools

On Friday 25th May, Darren visited two local schools – Henleaze Junior School and Kingsweston Special School.

Darren said after the visit:

“It was a delight to meet pupils, staff and governors and hear more about the challenges facing our education providers. More government funding is sorely needed to support our children’s education and to ensure these hard-working public sector workers are paid what they deserve. We are losing more and more teaching staff because they are over-burdened and under-paid.

I will continue to do what I can to champion lifting of the public-sector pay cap (which must funded by government not existing school’s budgets) and push the government to provide adequate funding for our schools and colleges”.

You can follow Darren’s work on education here.

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Darren speaks at VegfestUK

Vegfest UK is a large annual vegan festival, which takes place in Bristol.  Darren was invited to speak at the event, in conversation with Ecotricity’s Dale Vince and VegfestUK organiser Tim Barford. Ecotricity is an energy company which specialises in selling green energy to consumers.

Before the event, which happened today, Darren wrote this on Facebook:

You can catch me in conversation with Ecotricity’s Dale Vince and VegfestUK organiser Tim Barford on Sunday 27th May.

I’ve got a lot to say about my concerns about animal welfare, use of fur, plastic pollution and our over reliance on fossil fuels – see you there.

You can read more about the festival here: https://bristol.vegfest.co.uk/about-the-show/#

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Darren calls for new Anti Modern Slavery measures in Bristol

On Facebook, Darren wrote:

Bristol has had real issues with modern slavery: car washes and nail bars can be hotspots. I’ve written to the Gangmaster’s and Labour Abuse Authority to ask them to licence these businesses in Bristol, to make sure they treat workers properly. I’ll also be hosting a Modern Slavery-focused event in June to continue to raise awareness of these issues to the local business community.

You can read the full letter here:
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Darren signs letter to Jeremy Hunt backing NSPCC campaign supporting Childline

Darren has signed a letter to Jeremy Hunt from the NSPCC, calling for more funding for Childline. Childline has a significant role to play in children’s mental health care, with 22,546 children struggling with suicidal thoughts and feelings calling the line in 2016-17.

Darren wrote this about the letter:

I was delighted to sign this open letter to Jeremy Hunt backing the @NSPCC’s Are You There campaign with 130 other MPs and Peers.

Childline is providing a crucial round-the-clock service to children struggling with their mental health, with one in three counselling sessions now relating to mental and emotional health

Together, we’re calling on Government to increase funding to Childline to ensure that no child’s mental health is left on the line.

You can read the full content of the letter here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/05/23/childline-must-receive-funding-cope-demand-suicidal-children/

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Darren asks experts about social media and violence

 

The Science and Technology Committee, which Darren is a member of, held public evidence session on social media and its links to violence. This was part of its inquiry on Social Media and screens-use.

The witnesses present were Martin Hewitt, Assistant Commissioner, Metropolitan Police Service, Dr Netta Weinstein, Senior Lecturer, Cardiff University, Beth Murray, Director of Communications and Engagement, Catch 22, Dr Keir Irwin-Rogers, Lecturer, The Open University, and Sheldon Thomas, Consultant on gang and youth violence, Gangsline.

Darren asked the witnesses about the funding for online policing, and who should be responsible for enforcing regulation on the internet.

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Darren asks scientific experts about social media and the harm it could cause

Darren was present at the Science and Technology committee’s first evidence session for its Social media and screens-use inquiry. Here, charities, learned societies and academics were asked about cyber-bullying, addiction and body image.

The witnesses shown here were Matt Blow, Policy and Government Affairs Manager, YoungMinds, Dr Liam Hackett, CEO, Ditch the Label, Dustin Hutchinson, Research and Policy Analyst, National Children’s Bureau, and Carolyn Bunting, CEO, Internet Matters.

Darren asked the witnesses about the age of consent for social media, and about evidence linking social media to health related harms.

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Darren signs letter to Prime Minister about Sainsbury’s pay cuts

Sainsbury’s are planning to reduce the income of 13,000 of their staff. Darren signed a letter to the Prime Minister, asking her to stand up and ask Sainsbury’s to halt this change. Here’s what Darren wrote about this letter on Facebook:

Ordinary people work hard to keep Sainsbury’s running. It’s unfair that 13,000 them could see their income slashed by up to £3,000 a year. That’s why I signed a letter to the Prime Minister asking that she calls on Sainsbury’s to halt this change.

 And here’s the letter itself:

Dear Prime Minister,

Taking home a fair wage should be the very least that a hardworking employee deserves.

That’s why we are appalled that unscrupulous contract changes at high street retailer Sainsburys will see 10% of their staff lose up to a staggering £3,000 per year.

Sainsbury’s is one of the high street’s most longstanding and well-respected brands. The pay rise that some of their employees will receive under these proposed changes should be welcomed. But under no condition should this be to the detriment of the estimated 13,000 employees who are set to see their wages slashed. We are completely dismayed that a company of Sainsbury’s reputation would use an increase in basic pay as a smokescreen for a whole array of deplorable decisions that will hit hardest their most dedicated, loyal and long-term staff.

Under the proposed changes, all employees will lose their paid breaks, there will be widespread cuts to premium pay including a shortening of nightshift premium hours and a scrapping of Sunday premium pay, and shop floor staff will no longer receive bonuses. However, the scrapping of the bonus scheme will not affect the CEO, Mike Coupe, or his fellow management team. Staff describe morale at the store as at an ‘all time low’, with many concerned that they cannot afford to stay in the job that they love, despite having worked at the organisation for decades.

At Prime Minister’s Questions, you assured the House that you would look at this issue, recognising the hard work that these staff put in day in and day out. We ask that you speak directly with the Chief Executive and call on him to ensure that no staff will face a pay cut under his contract changes, showing a fraction of the loyalty to his staff that they have shown to him.

At the time of writing, over 104,000 colleagues and customers have signed a petition at https://www.change.org/p/support-sainsbury-s-shop-floor-staff-s-working-rights-we-re-not-in-the-money calling on Sainsbury’s to reconsider their position. We acknowledge that this is a commercial decision, but, as a Prime Minister who actively calls for workers’ rights to be upheld, we ask that you join these signatories and stand up for the hardworking, longstanding and loyal Sainsbury’s staff who are being asked to work well for less.

We look forward to hearing what action you have taken on this issue.

Yours Sincerely,

Siobhain McDonagh MP

Co-Signatories:

Robert Halfon MP

Sir David Amess MP

Jeremy Lefroy MP

Tom Brake MP

Christine Jardine MP

Caroline Lucas MP

Dr Lisa Cameron MP

Stewart McDonald MP

Patricia Gibson MP

Carol Monaghan MP

Martyn Day MP

Neil Gray MP

Ben Lake MP

Rebecca Long Bailey MP

Tom Watson MP

Laura Pidcock MP

Ed Miliband MP

David Lammy MP

Frank Field MP

Joanne Platt MP

Joan Ryan MP

Luciana Berger MP

Wes Streeting MP

Liz Kendall MP

Stella Creasy MP

Karen Buck MP

Owen Smith MP

John Grogan MP

Jon Cruddas MP

Diana Johnson MP

Ian Murray MP

Virendra Sharma MP

Jo Stevens MP

Kerry McCarthy MP

Teresa Pearce MP

Stephen Morgan MP

Jeff Smith MP

Paul Flynn MP

Clive Betts MP

Madeleine Moon MP

Ronnie Campbell MP

Darren Jones MP

Helen Hayes MP

Susan Elan Jones MP

Thelma Walker MP

Jim Cunningham MP

Lloyd Russell-Moyle MP

Ian Mearns MP

Kate Green MP

Mohammad Yasin MP

Roberta Blackman-Woods MP

Alex Sobel MP

Paul Blomfield MP

Justin Madders MP

Paul Farrelly MP

Rosie Cooper MP

Kate Hoey MP

Rosie Duffield MP

Helen Jones MP

Alex Cunningham MP

Ian Austin MP

Gill Furniss MP

Stephen Pound MP

Kate Hollern MP

Marsha De Cordova MP

Gareth Thomas MP

George Howarth MP

Ellie Reeves MP

Mary Creagh MP

Paul Sweeney MP

Mike Kane MP

Grahame Morris MP

Vernon Coaker MP

Meg Hillier MP

Matt Western MP

Rachael Maskell MP

Stephen Twigg MP

Valerie Vaz MP

David Hanson MP

Tulip Siddiq MP

Gloria De Piero MP

Chris Elsmore MP

Steve Reed MP

Liz Twist MP

Emma Reynolds MP

Gareth Snell MP

Mark Hendrick MP

Anna McMorrin MP

Yasmin Qureshi MP

Julie Cooper MP

Jack Dromey MP

Jared O’Mara MP

Barry Sheerman MP

Naz Shah MP

Matthew Pennycook MP

Hugh Gaffney MP

Daniel Zeichner MP

Fabian Hamilton MP

Anna Turley MP

Ruth Cadbury MP

Yvonne Fovargue MP

Graham Stringer MP

Roger Godsiff MP

Gerald Jones MP

Mike Amesbury MP

Karen Lee MP

Maria Eagle MP

Helen Goodman MP

Debbie Abrahams MP

Sandy Martin MP

Danielle Rowley MP

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Darren speaks to TalkRadio about tipping scandals

Darren spoke to TalkRadio about scandals around waiting staff tips. Some restaurants are taking staff tips, and some are even charging waiting staff money in case they get any tips. Darren then talked about what he was going to do about this.

You can listen to the full interview here: