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Darren challenges CCG Mental Health contract

Darren Jones, MP for Bristol North West, has responded to constituent concerns about the awarding of a CCG contract for mental health (psychotherapy services) to Vita Health Services.

Darren said:

“I have been contacted by several constituents about the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG’s decision to award a new contract (which was due for re-tendering) for psychological therapy to Vita Health Group.

Constituents have advised they are concerned about:
• The lack of local knowledge of the new provider – we understand they are based in Essex.
• The significant lack of expertise of the new provider in providing mental health/psychotherapy services– we understand they have one similar contract (in Essex) which commenced 1 4 19.
• The high dividends shared by the company’s two directors in 17/18 (in addition to salaries) – particularly, given the other providers who bid for the contract included social enterprises, charities and the local NHS Mental Health Trust who have extensive experience in the local area and do not operate on a private/bonus-based model.

Constituents were clear they felt this decision put the treatment of 20,000 clients (who access services annually), and who have a diverse range of needs at risk.

I have contacted the CCG and asked whether they considered these risks and what mitigation is in place to ensure there is no negative impact on clients or prospective clients”.

To follow Darren’s work on health click here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Darren encourages schools to teach plastic awareness

Darren Jones, MP for Bristol North West, has written to all Primary schools in Bristol North West encouraging them to take part in a free scheme which teaches pupils in-depth knowledge of plastic waste and how to reduce it but also offers schools the chance to win up to £20,000 for a sustainability project.

Darren said:

” Today, I have contacted all 29 primary schools in Bristol North West, inviting them to take part in Asda’s Plastic Waste lesson plan and competition.

As we all know, plastic waste is a huge issue, both in the UK and globally. Tackling this problem is crucial and I will continue to press for action to reduce plastic pollution – that includes challenging supermarkets to use more recycled materials and reduce their own plastic waste. However, from the perspective of working with young people, I am pleased to see that Asda are looking to inspire the next generation to live sustainably and protect our planet, through an exciting ‘Plastic Mission’ challenge, which finishes with a poster competition, where schools can win up to £20,000 for a sustainability project.

The deadline for entries into the poster competition is 24th July, I urge all schools to get involved”!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Darren backs calls for new crossing in Lawrence Weston

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has met with local residents, signed and shared a community-led petition calling for a pedestrian crossing and 20 mph zone near Oasis Academy Bank Leaze. Darren will also be writing to the council and Curo, a Housing Association building new homes in the area, to highlight his concerns.

Darren said:

“It’s great to see the community in Lawrence Weston campaigning for a safer school crossing and 20mph zone near Oasis Academy Bank Leaze. I have signed the petition and encourage those who live near, or visit the area, to do the same.”

You can sign the petition here.

 

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Darren backs Mental Health Week

Darren Jones, MP for Bristol North West, has supported this year’s Mental Health Week.

This year’s theme is body image – how we think and feel about our bodies. New online surveys were conducted by the Mental Health Foundation with YouGov in March 2019 of 4,505 UK adults 18+ and 1,118 GB teenagers (aged 13-19) found:

* One in five adults (20%) felt shame, just over one third (34%) felt down or low, and 19% felt disgusted because of their body image in the last year. 
* Among teenagers, 37% felt upset, and 31% felt ashamed in relation to their body image.
*Just over one third of adults said they had ever felt anxious (34%) or depressed (35%) because of their body image.
* One in eight (13%) adults experienced suicidal thoughts or feelings because of concerns about their body image.
*Just over one in five adults (21%) said images used in advertising had caused them to worry about their body image.
* Just over one in five adults (22%) and 40% of teenagers said images on social media caused them to worry about their body image.

Clearly action is needed to build and promote positive body image and support good mental health and wellbeing in relation to our bodies. Everyone has a right to feel comfortable and confident in their own bodies and Darren backs the Mental Health Foundation‘s recommendations for:

1- Effective regulation of how body image is portrayed.
2- The need for commitment from social media companies to play a key role in promoting body kindness.
3- Taking a public health approach to body image by training frontline health and education staff.
4- Individually being more aware of how we can take care of ourselves and others in relation to body image.

Find out more here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Darren visits Westbury, The Downs, Avonmouth, Henleaze and Horfield in one day.

Darren Jones, the MP for Bristol North West, had a very busy Saturday (11th May 2019) hosting a Café Politics at Horfield Leisure Centre, a Powered By You stall in Avonmouth followed by visits to Westbury Spring Fair, Henleaze Junior School’s May Fair and the Foodies Festival on the Downs to show his support for a new local charity.

Darren said:

“Today was a busy but fantastic constituency day. I started off talking local and national issues at my Café Politics at Horlfied Leisure Centre and then hosted the first of my new Powered By You Street Stalls in Avonmouth.  It was a l‪ovely sunny day for the Westbury Community Spring Fair where I got to meet North Bristol Police Cadets and the RAF 2442 Squadron ATC. ‬

Finally, I popped by the Fair in Henleaze and then the Foodies Festival on the Downs to help raise awareness of Little Hero. Little Hero is an important new charity started by my constituent John after the loss of his young son, Will. You can read all about Little Hero here and you can donate £5 by texting WILL to 70970.

I’ll be doing Street stalls most Saturday mornings in the coming months, to find out where I’ll be next, please visit my Powered By You page where you can also find out how to download my Powered By You app”.

 

 

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Darren visits Credit Union

Darren Jones, the MP for Bristol North West, has joined Bristol Credit Union and visited the team in Bristol.

Darren said:

” Great to hear about the fantastic work of Bristol Credit Union today.

Bristol Credit Union (or BCU) is a not-for-profit co-operative, helping local people save and borrow at fair rates. When you save or borrow with Bristol Credit Union, more of your money stays local, giving our city’s economy a boost.

Bristol Credit Union has been serving members and communities in the West of England since 1999 and has grown strongly during that time with over 12,600 members – and I am now one.

Find out more here: www.bristolcreditunion.org/”.

 

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Darren calls for lifetime elected office ban for those who promote rape

Darren Jones, the MP for Bristol North West, has joined the Fawcett Society’s calls for those who promote rape and/or gender violence to be  banned from running for office.

Darren said:

“Too many women face horrific abuse online and in public life. Our law currently permits those who issue threats of violence to stand for election. This has to change. We must stand up against hate and ensure those elected to office uphold and represent the highest standards towards women and wider society.

I encourage you to support these calls by signing the Fawcett Society’s petition by clicking here“.

#NotFitToStand

 

 

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Darren demands formal apology for Amritsar Massacre

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has received a reply from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office after signing a cross party letter, calling on the government to issue a formal apology for British actions in the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre in 1919.

Darren said:

” I’ve now received a reply from the Government following the joint letter I signed seeking a full apology for the massacre in 1919 at Amritsar.

This half-hearted response isn’t good enough – the Government has missed an important opportunity, given the 100 year anniversary, to issue an apology for this appalling event. I will continue to call for an official apology”.

“I“.

 

 

 

 

 

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Darren demands cessation of visa fees for commonwealth armed forces personnel

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has signed a cross party letter, along with 130 other MPs, calling on the Home Secretary to cease charging visa fees for commonwealth servicemen and women who, after their service to this country, apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (which costs £2389 per person, per application).

Darren said:

“I am pleased to have signed this letter – all visa fees, alongside the assessment process, need a total re-think, but making money out of those  who have risked their lives for this country (as the cost to the tax payer to process these applications is very low) is totally unacceptable and must stop”.