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Darren champions local parks and open spaces

On Friday 29th and 30th June, Darren visited Lawrence Weston Moors with Avon Wildlife Trust and attended a wildlife walk with local expert, Steve England, and the Friends of Lamplighters Marsh. This follows Darren’s recent nomination to Groundworks for the Friends on-going efforts to protect and sustain the local environment at the Marsh.

Darren said after the visits:

” What a wonderful couple of visits in the sunshine – I was keen to find out, Bristol North West has the most green space in Bristol, from super parks like Blaise Castle, the Downs and nature reserves in Avonmouth, Sea Mills and Lawrence Weston to vital woodland habitats and ancient trees in Kingsweston, Blaise and Stoke Park. it is vital we protect, maintain and use these beautiful parks and open spaces. These spaces are so important as they help to keep us fit and healthy and encourage us to meet our neighbours and bond as community.”‬

 

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Darren talks to young people about the effect of social media and screens on their health

The Science and Technology Committee, which Darren is a member of, is holding an inquiry into Social Media and Screen Use and its effect on children and young people’s health. At this evidence session five young people gave evidence about their experience of this issue.

Darren firstly discussed how age verification could play a role in protecting children and young people online.

Darren then asked about how posting content on social media made the young people feel.

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Darren visits Orchard School in Horfield

On Friday 29th June, as part of his mission to visit every school in Bristol North West, Darren Jones MP visited Orchard School in Horfield.

Darren said after the visit:

” I enjoyed another great school visit today at Orchard School in Horfield. I always leave schools with hope after seeing our young people with so much energy and enthusiasm about the future. And I keep trying to persuade them to take over from me in a few years time!”

You can follow Darren’s work on education here.

 

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Darren joins Marmalade Trust ‘Ending Loneliness’ event

MP for Bristol North West, Darren Jones joined Marmalade Trust’s closing party on College Green on Friday 22nd June. The party drew to a close the wide-array of organised events forming part of a week to End Loneliness in the UK.

Darren said:

“I was delighted to join Marmalade Trust’s #LetsTalkLoneliness event on College Green. Loneliness is such an important issue to so many people – we need to talk about it and support each other. It is astounding that loneliness can have similar impact on your health as smoking and obesity, some studies have also shown it leads to an increased likelihood of dementia.  I’ll be following up on how I can support Marmalade Trust’s great work in Parliament in the coming weeks”.

You can find out more about Marmalade Trust here.

 

 

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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 visits Henleaze Singing for the Brain Group

On Thursday 31st May, Darren – a registered Dementia Friend –  visited the Henleaze group of Singing for the Brain.

Singing for the Brain is a group activity which has been carefully designed by the Alzheimer’s Society for people with memory loss and their carers, in order to receive the many health benefits that are woven into the fun of singing. It is an enjoyable, friendly and uplifting activity giving many people a much-needed boost in confidence, all led by a trained facilitator.

The group meet for light refreshments and a chat beforehand to help people relax and get to know each other. Once the session starts, the group sit in a circle and do some exercises to warm up the voice. Then the fun really begins by singing a range of songs, either unaccompanied or sometimes using musical instruments.

If you wish to join the group, please note they meet on the 1st, 3rd and 5th Thursday of each month

You can find out more about the Singing for the Brain’s fantastic work here and more general information from The Alzheimer’s Society here.

Darren said after the visit:

“I signed up to become an Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Friend shortly after becoming an MP – I did this as I feel it is crucial there is wider understanding of dementia and how to support those with it.  I was therefore delighted to meet the local Singing for the Brain group and find out about the great work this group are doing with those suffering from dementia as well as their families. This community and person-to-person support is paramount and I know many of my constituents rely on it. I wish this group continued success and hope their numbers continue to grow as more people with dementia choose to access this invaluable support”.

If you think you or a family member may have Dementia talk to your GP who will refer you to the Dementia Wellbeing Service. They will allocated a navigator to take you through the system and provide support for you. You can also call the National Dementia Helpline on 0300 222 11 22.

 

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Darren welcomes Google and Youtube to Southmead to provide online safety training

Darren welcomed Google and YouTube to Southmead. The companies were there to train teachers and youth workers about online safety and digital citizenship for the young people they work with.

Gaps in young people’s online safety is a significant issue. According to the NSPCC, last year  there were 12,000 calls made to Childline concerning online issues, and one out every four children have experienced something upsetting online. Darren was therefore more than happy to speak at the event, and contribute his thoughts as a technology lawyer and member of the Science and Technology Select Committee.

 

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Darren speaks on Grandparents’ issues, and supports Bristol Grandparent Support Group

Currently, there is no legal right for grandparents in the UK to see their grandchildren. That can lead to some grandparents having contact with grandchildren completely halted. That’s what happened to Jane Jackson – but she used the experience to build a support group for people in a similar situations to her, and to speak out and campaign on this issue. Darren spoke in Parliament in support of her and her work.

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Darren votes for government to release Windrush scandal documents

The government have been trying to deport UK citizens. Members of the Windrush generation, who came to Britain from the Commonwealth before 1971 and were granted UK citizenship, have been threatened with deportation because they couldn’t find the right documents from when they moved to Britain.

What’s more, the government’s ‘hostile environment’ policy, designed to make life difficult for anyone even suspected of being an illegal immigrant, will have harmed the Windrush generation.

This is because it takes benefits, housing, NHS treatment and bank account access from anyone whom the Home Office thinks can’t find the right documents.

Darren voted for the release of government documents relating to the deportation of the Windrush generation. The government voted against this.

You can read the full motion below:

That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, that she will be graciously pleased to give directions that the following papers be provided to the Home Affairs Committee: all papers, correspondence and advice including emails and text messages, from 11 May 2010 up to and including 1 May 2018, to and between Ministers, senior officials and Special Advisers relating to policy decisions including on the Immigration Acts 2014 and 2016 with regard the Windrush generation cases, including deportations, detentions and refusal of re-entry, the setting of deportation and removal targets and their effect on the Windrush generation, and action taken within Government following the concerns raised by Caribbean Governments with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office including the original decision by the Prime Minister not to meet Caribbean Heads of Government and officials, and all copies of minutes and papers relating to the Cabinet’s Immigration Implementation Taskforce.

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Darren supports Windrush generation and offers help

Many from the Windrush Generation, people who moved to Britain in the 1950s and 1960s and have been here their entire lives, are now threatened by deportation. On this topic, Darren attended the Parliamentary Urgent Question about this, and said the following:

It’s really sad to hear that people who have been here legally their entire lives might be deported, because of Home Office admin issues. The Government needs to move quickly and give these people the security they deserve. I was happy to support David Lammy MP on this in the House today.

If you’re a constituent affected by this issue and you need help, please get in touch with my office.

Contact details for Darren’s office are available here: www.darren-jones.co.uk/contact

Furthermore, you can read more about this issue here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-43780621