• Conor calls on government to address TTIP concerns to deliver the jobs, growth and fairer deal for consumers

    Conor McGinn MP has said that TTIP must be transparent, promote decent jobs, avoid a race to the bottom, and ensure that the NHS and workers rights are protected.

    Commenting on TTIP Conor said:

    “Much has been debated in recent months on TTIP, and it is both welcome and vital that this deal is receiving proper scrutiny from trade unions, civil society and business.

    “I have heard from a number of constituents about their concerns on TTIP, for example that it could include insufficient exemptions for the NHS and other public services; that it could lead to serious legal challenges; and that the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) could result in transferring power away from people. These are all reasons why pushing for more transparency and accountability is vital.

    “We also need to recognise potential benefits that a deal on trade could provide for Britain’s workers and industries. Britain is a trading nation and balanced trade deals have a positive impact on jobs and growth. It is therefore crucial then that any benefits which an EU-US trade deal delivers filters down to employees, small businesses and consumers, that the deal is open and accountable, and that it does not dilute current labour, consumer, environmental and food safety standards.

    “Trade deals also provide unique opportunities to properly regulate global trade. This means we need careful and reflective thinking because in a rapidly changing global economy we are increasingly trading with countries, for example China, whose labour laws do not match our high standards. A balanced TTIP, one that promotes, rather than weakens social, labour and environmental standards, regulating a quarter of all global trade, could provide a welcome departure from a race to the bottom.

    “The proposals should receive proper scrutiny at both a UK and EU level and that any final deal must have transparency and accountability at its heart. I was disappointed that the Coalition Government paid such little attention to these concerns and I believe it is important the current Government ensure they are covered in the negotiating process.

    “I fought the General Election on a Labour manifesto that recognised the potential benefits of TTIP, but emphasised that any final agreement needs to ensure that the NHS is protected, promotes decent jobs and avoids a race to the bottom. Labour MEPs have also made the case in the European Parliament to exclude public services – including our NHS – from TTIP negotiations and to ensure workers’ rights, environmental standards and food safety standards are protected. A number of worries similar to our own have been raised by other EU member states and these will need to be reflected to secure agreement and therefore will have to be taken on board by the European Commission.

    “I hope that the Government now listen and respond to these concerns. I can assure you that I will follow this issue very closely and press the Government to ensure that TTIP delivers the jobs, growth and fairer deal for consumers we all want to see.”

     

     

     

  • Conor joins residents at Rainford Christmas Fayre

    Conor joined local residents at the Rainford Chirstmas Fayre at the weekend.

    Rainford Parish Hall was packed out with stalls and visitors. The event is organised through the Rainford Hub, and was only its second year.

    Conor visited the stalls, set up by local businesses such as Connoisseur Ales and Bridge Farm Landscapes and Nurseries, alongside local community groups.

    Speaking at the event, Conor said:

    “It was a great turn out despite the weather and it’s fantastic to see so many local people supporting the event.

    “Today has shown the strength of the community spirit here in Rainford and what can be achieved when local businesses, community groups, schools and people come together.”

     

  • Conor shows support for Neighbourhood Food Bank collection

    Conor McGinn MP, visited Tesco’s Express in Windle to add his support to Tesco’s seventh Neighbourhood food collection, and meet store managers Julian and Dawn.

    Working alongside the Trussel Trust and fairshare the initiative has helped provide support to millions of families since the first collection in 2012.

    Between April and September this year St Helens food bank handed out over 3000 three day emergency food supplies to people in crisis, over 1100 of these were for children.

    Commenting McGinn said:

    “The increase in demand for help from food banks shows the impact this Tory Government is having on people in my constituency.

    “It is not right that in a rich county like the UK, families are having to turn to food banks in their thousands just to feed themselves.

    “I wholeheartedly commend Tescos and the Trussell Trust for working together to do what they can to help fill the gap left by Government.

    “It is thanks to the support of initiatives like this, alongside the selfless work of volunteers at St Helens Foodbank, that the community is able to support those most in need.”

     

  • Conor gives backing to local businesses on Small Business Saturday

    Conor McGinn visited local businesses to show support for Small Business Saturday, and highlight a few of the great businesses in the constituency.

    Small Business Saturday provides an opportunity to celebrate the success and important impact small businesses have on the economy and local communities. The annual event takes place on the first shopping Saturday in December.

    One of the businesses Conor visited was Forsters’ Farm shop at Shoots Delph Farm in Moss Bank. At the shop, Anne and Jack Forster spoke with Conor about the business and how they pride themselves in the organic produce they rear on the farm.

    Commenting Conor said:

    “Small Business Saturday is about family businesses, local shops, wholesalers, and small manufacturers across the country and here in St Helens North.

    “Small business are the backbone of the local economy and community, and it is only right to encourage consumers to ‘shop local’ and support small businesses in their communities.

     “Meeting people like Jack and Anne who are passionate, not just about their business about but the local area as well, just shows how important small businesses are and why small businesses should be supported.”

     

  • Conor McGinn MP congratulates local schools on winning top regional awards

    On Friday night, the annual Educate Awards were presented at the Anglican Cathedral, Liverpool. The five schools nominated from St Helens North all achieved runners up awards or came away as winners.

    The awards celebrate the achievements and best practice of schools and colleges within the Liverpool city region, Lancashire and Cheshire, and 19 awards were handed out to schools and teachers.

    Commenting Conor said:

    “I would like to congratulate the five schools from my constituency on their awards. St Helens was well represented and we should take pride the great work going on in our schools.

     “The schools deserved recognition for the hard work they do, and the innovative and creative teaching which inspires our young people in the classroom.”

     The winners and runners up are listed below.

     Eco Project of the Year
    Runner up: Cowley International College

     Spirit of Enterprise Award
    Winner:
    Rainford C E Primary

     Innovative and Creative Literacy Award
    Winner:
    The District CE Primary School

     Outstanding Commitment to Sport in a Primary School
    Runner up:  Billinge St Aidan’s C of E Primary School

     Outstanding Commitment to Sport in a Secondary School
    Runner up: Rainford High Technology College

     

     

  • Conor nominates local chef for Parliamentary pub food award

    Rainford pub not sidewaysConor McGinn has nominated Phillip Smith the Chef at Rainsford’s Junction Pub for the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group pub chef of the year award.

    The prestigious award encourages all MPs to recognise pub chefs in their constituency renowned for their great food, and aims to encourage young chefs towards a career in the pub trade and help promote job opportunities in the pub industry.

    Commenting Conor said

    “The Pub Chef of the Year nomination provides an opportunity to recognise great local pubs like The Junction, and the important role they play in our communities.

    I have visited The Junction a number of times and I have always enjoyed the fantastic food there. It’s a great pub that offers tasty food made with the best local produce.”

     

     

  • Conor visits St Cuthbert’s Catholic High School for pupils’ Q&A

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    Conor McGinn visited St Cuthbert’s High School on Friday to meet head teacher Mrs Twist and the school’s Student Senior Team. At the school he spoke to students about his role as their local MP, and why he became involved in politics.

    The students took the opportunity to question Conor on a wide range of issues including dealing with confrontation, funding cuts to mental health and his hobbies.

     Speaking after the visit Conor said:

    “It was great to meet the students today, they asked some interesting questions. It was important to hear about the issues and concerns they have, as well as learning more about what they do.

    “It is evident from my visit that Mrs Twist and the whole school are working hard to raise both the aspirations of the pupils and their attainment levels. I look forward to visiting again in the future.”

     

     

  • Conor supports local arts and culture venture

    Arts cafeConor McGinn stopped by the Pop up Café Hunt and Darton for a bite to eat and to enjoy entertainment from the artists. Whilst there he met Holly Darton and Jenny Hunt, who run the café.

    The café has come to St Helens as part of the Heart of Glass project and mixes food with performance art, an eclectic mix of poetry and dance.  

    Conor was joined for lunch by Patrick Fox the director of the Heart of Glass project. Heart of Glass is an arts commissioning project which supports work made with, for and about St Helens. The initiative aims to get more people involved in the arts.  Commenting after the visit Patrick said “It’s really fantastic that Conor popped by to see us, showing support and recognising the transformative power of arts and creativity across our communities”

    Conor added:

    “It was an interesting and entertaining lunch today, and just one of the many projects being delivered through the Heart of Glass.

    “Projects like this are important to help increase participation in the arts and support existing local artists in their work.”

     

  • Conor responds to the announcement of tax office closure

    Responding to the announcement from HMRC of the planned closure of St Helens tax office, Conor said:

    “This announcement is the latest blow to St Helens. The Tory Government seems determined to obliterate public services and destroy public sector jobs.

    “When taken alongside proposals to close our courthouse and fire station, and with huge cuts to local policing and the local authority’s budget, people will justifiably draw the conclusion that this Tory Government wants to diminish the status of St Helens as a major town and borough in the North West, and in doing so remove the associated economic benefits from our area.”  Further details of the announced closure.”

    Further details about the planned closure can be found at the link below.

    http://www.sthelensstar.co.uk/news/14029504.Tax_office_to_close_under__modernisation__plans/

     

  • Conor addresses St Helens College Graduation Ceremony

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    On Saturday Conor addressed St Helens College Graduation Ceremony.

    Commenting Conor said:

    “It was a special honour to address the University Centre St Helens Graduation Ceremony, and to have an opportunity to recognise the achievements of St Helens College. The graduates of all ages and from all backgrounds are a testament to the work being done to widen access to education and I pay tribute to everyone associated with the University Centre. 

    “The Class of 2015 are a credit to our St Helens community and they should be proud of what they have achieved. I congratulate them on receiving their awards and wish them and their families well for the future.”

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