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Darren writes to Cotham School about Stoke Lodge

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has recently met local residents, and separately with staff from Cotham School, to discuss the school’s use of Stoke Lodge green space which would include the erection of a fence, alongside submission of a planning application to erect a new changing room building and works to the existing changing rooms.

Following his investigation, Darren how now wrote to Cotham School:

 

    

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Darren backs Crisis ‘Everybody In’ campaign

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has added his pledge to the new Crisis ‘Everybody In’ campaign which seeks to end street homelessness.

Darren said:

” Housing is the number one issue in my inbox – I know how it feels to have people come to me for help when they’re in fear of eviction, suffering in unsuitable temporary accommodation, sleeping on other people’s floors or in their cars, or even sleeping rough out in Bristol North West – this is totally unacceptable in modern Britain.

We see more and more people sleeping in doorways in our city centre – I know that something needs to be done and the government must act to increase house building and support local authorities and organisations that help vulnerable people. That’s why I’m backing the Crisis Campaign, that launched on Monday 11th June, to end homelessness in the UK.

The recent announcement by the council of £600,000 funding to support Bristol’s homeless is a great start but that alone won’t solve the rising number of rough sleepers in Bristol and further afield.

I have pledged my support to do what I can to end homelessness and my message will soon appear on the Crisis website”.

You can find out more about Crisis’ campaign to end homelessness here.

#EverybodyIn

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Darren welcomes funding to support homeless

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has praised Bristol City Council’s successful application for £600,000 funding to support homeless people across the city.

Darren said:

“Well done to the team at the council for successfully bringing £600,000 funding to support Bristol’s homeless.

I think we all know this money alone won’t solve the rising homelessness, caused in large part by government-imposed austerity, but this will fund a much-needed cold weather shelter and support services and is just one part of the council’s strategy to reduce homelessness.

Building affordable housing, such as the council’s project in Henbury which will be a 100% affordable development, is also a great step in the right direction. Projects like Henbury, and the new housing in Lawrence Weston, will help to support those waiting on the council’s housing list who may be at risk of homelessness or suffering in suitable or overcrowded accommodation”.

You can read more about the council’s funding success here.
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Darren updates residents on Avonmouth Flies

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has been investigating the on-going fly problem in the Avonmouth area alongside the council and Environment Agency. Darren has met with a number of prominent businesses in the area to see their on-site practises and discuss local resident concerns.  Here’s Darren’s latest update:

Darren said:

Over the early May Bank Holiday weekend, I received hundreds of comments from residents across Avonmouth, Shirehampton, Lawrence Weston and Henbury – as well as some as far as Southmead and Henleaze- about an unacceptable increase in the amount of flies in the area.

Investigations have concluded that there was no particular infestation of flies, or a breach of Environmental Agency rules, but that is not to say that the number of flies in the area is acceptable.

I have since met with many companies in Avonmouth, including the Bristol Port, and have spoken with Bristol City Council, the Environment Agency, local residents and Avonmouth-based factory workers.

From the evidence available to me, I can only conclude that we now have too many waste processing companies in Avonmouth.

In only a few years, we have gone from processing tens of thousands of bales of black bin waste to hundreds of thousands. And whilst some businesses have high quality facilities in which to accept, process and transport waste bundles others do not.

My view, therefore, is that enough is enough. We can not accept any further waste processing facilities in Avonmouth and I call upon those we already have to invest in their facilities to ensure the highest standards of protection.

I have also recently supported legislation for new waste enforcement powers in Westminster and, in conjunction with Bristol City Council, I am seeking to find legal solutions to keep potentially polluting companies as far aware from residents.

Lastly, I want to see a diversification of the type of businesses and jobs in Avonmouth. We do not want Avonmouth to be the waste capital of Europe, we want good quality high paying long term jobs for local people”.

Anyone seeing an increase in flies should report this to the council’s Environmental Health team immediately. However, if you think the flies are coming from a regulated waste business then please report your concerns to the Environment Agency.

 

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Public meeting on YardArts Development

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones will be hosting a public meeting regarding the proposed YardArts development on Penpole Lane in Shirehampton.

Darren said:

“Following my survey, over 430 local residents have now contacted me to share their views about the proposed YardArts site on Penpole Lane. The majority are against the plans, or at least what we knew of them at the time of writing, and are concerned about more cars on a tricky junction, impact on local ecology and wildlife and residential use next to Kings Weston Estate.

Most respondents wanted to hear more from YardArts so I’ve arranged a public meeting from 6.30 to 8pm on Friday 29th June at the Shirehampton Methodist Church.

YardArts will be there and the landowner, who has recently been undertaking a number of permitted works as well as submitting a new planning application for self-store units, has been invited.

There will a brief round-up of my survey results, discussion of the YardArts planning application and the opportunity to ask questions.

The Church can seat just over 100 and hold a few more standing so please get there ready for a prompt 6.30 start to guarantee a space”.

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Darren updates residents on Stoke Lodge

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones has recently met local residents, and separately with staff from Cotham School, to discuss the school’s use of Stoke Lodge green space which would include the erection of a fence, alongside submission of a planning application to erect a new changing room building and works to the existing changing rooms.

Darren said on the ‘We Love Stoke Lodge’ Facebook group on 6th June:

“I wanted to share an e-mail with you as residents, which is exactly the same as the e-mail I’ve just sent to Cotham School.

Dear Residents,

I wanted to drop you a quick note of update on Stoke Lodge playing fields. Since we met, I have met with Cotham School and sought the advice of various stakeholders to assess best practice and guidance.

That has included liaising with planning lawyers and Ofsted (who I have now spoken with), and Bristol City Council and the HSE (who I am still due to speak with). I have also tabled a written parliamentary question to the Department of Education, who I understand from Ofsted is the direct “regulator” of Cotham School.

In doing so, I’m seeking to bring together the views I’ve heard from both Cotham School and my constituents with impartial advice from relevant organisations. Once I have finished that process I will write to you with the advice I have received, my initial conclusions and any suggested recommendations I might be able to make on how to get the best outcome for both the school and for local residents. I hope to be able to do that within the next week or two (depending on when I get the answer to my written parliamentary question).

If you have any further questions in the meantime, please do come back to me.

Best wishes

Darren

Darren Jones MP
Member of Parliament, Bristol North West
www.darren-jones.co.uk | fb.com/darrenjonesmp | @darrenpjones
Your Voice in Parliament. Your Champion in Bristol”.

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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 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 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: