• Helens Law Day of Action

    This year marks the 30th anniversary of Helen McCourt’s murder in Billinge.

    Today, I joined with Helen’s mother Marie McCourt, other victims’ families and their MPs in Westminster for a day of action in the campaign for a “no body, no parole” rule to be included on the statute book.

    We met with the Justice Secretary David Gauke and presented a petition with almost 500,000 signatures to 10 Downing Street.

    I am determined to help Marie finally get some peace from what she describes as the “special kind of torture” of knowing she could die without ever discovering the whereabouts of her daughter.

    Families from across the country who are involved in the campaign came together to back the campaign for Helen’s Law.

    It is high time Parliament delivered the change in the law that Marie and so many other families desperately need.

  • Mental Health service funding

    I challenged Government Ministers over funding cuts to the North West Boroughs Partnership NHS Trust year on year since 2011.

    The Trust is charged with delivering community and inpatient mental health services across St Helens, Halton, Knowsley, Warrington and Wigan, and it supports a number of mental health charities across Merseyside and Greater Manchester.

    The Trust has £9.5 million less now than six years ago – a cut of nearly 6 per cent.

    Despite Government promises to increase spending on mental health, their record shows that services across the North West are having their budgets cut just as more pressure is being piled on to the NHS.

    This means that mental health services are under resourced and oversubscribed – which is not sustainable for those charged with providing or needing to use services.

  • Conor responds to the spring statment

    The Spring Statement from the Chancellor is more of the same failed austerity from this Tory Government.

    In the five years up to 2020, St Helens Council will see its budget cut by £21.9 million – nearly a third of its government funding.

    This is a disgraceful and prolonged attack on the public services that communities across our borough rely on – from local libraries to road maintenance.

    More cuts is not the answer. We need to properly support our councils that have been forced to do more with fewer resources, and our communities who are suffering as a result.

  • The social care system is failing people with dementia.

    People with dementia, on average, face hospital delays twice as long as patients without the condition.

    Just last year, half a million bed days were lost because dementia patients who were ready to leave hospital weren’t helped to get home.

    This is letting down dementia patients and their families as well as piling more pressure on our already overburdened NHS.

    Despite these enormous pressures, organisations like the St Helens Carers Centre offer a range of support for dementia patients and their families – supporting more than 1,500 people caring for a loved one who has dementia across the borough.

    The Centre was also the first in the country to introduce a Carers Emergency Card, which is carried both by the Carer and the cared for person with dementia, meaning that if the person with dementia becomes lost or confused, they can be identified through the card and the carer notified

    With the number of people living with dementia across the UK set to hit 1 million by 2021, it is more important than ever that the Government steps up to the plate and fixes dementia care – you can find out more from the Alzheimer’s Society here:

    https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/info/20175/fix_dementia_care

     

  • Conor hosts reception in Parliament for the Coalfields Regeneration Trust

    Former coalfield communities up and down the country like the ones I represent in St Helens have seen chronic underinvestment in employment, skills and health since the closure of the pits.

    I hosted a reception in Parliament for the Coalfields Regeneration Trust as they set out their ambitious programme of strategic projects in St Helens and across the country, supporting St Helens Council and local communities and businesses.

    I was delighted that so many Parliamentary colleagues came to support the event, particularly Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

    It is more important than ever to support our coalfield communities so that high skilled and well-paying jobs are available and health and wellbeing are prioritised.

    You can find out more about the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and the important work they are doing in St Helens here:

    https://www.coalfields-regen.org.uk/where-we-work/england/ See More

     

  • Equal Marriage Bill for Northern Ireland

    Conor McGinn MP announced today that he plans to introduce an Equal Marriage Bill for Northern Ireland.

    The move comes in the wake of the collapse of political talks at Stormont designed to restore devolved institutions and following a the Northern Ireland Secretary of State confirming that Government MPs would have a free vote on the matter at Westminster.

    The MP for St Helens North is working closely with the Love Equality campaign for civil marriage equality on the Bill, which is expected to be introduced in the House of Commons on March 28th 2018.

    Conor McGinn MP said:

    “My preference is for a fully functioning Executive and Assembly to deal with this issue, but LGBT couples in Northern Ireland should not be made to wait a moment longer for their basic rights.

    “That is why I am introducing this Bill at the earliest available opportunity. It will test the mood of the House of Commons and I am very confident that we will win any vote. It is then for the Government to legislate.

    “If my constituents in St Helens can marry the person they love, just like people in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Dublin, then I don’t see why couples in Belfast should not be able to do the same.”

    Patrick Corrigan of the Love Equality campaign for civil marriage equality said:

    “The Love Equality campaign welcomes this move from Conor McGinn MP and is pleased to be working closely with him in the preparation of the Private Member’s Bill.

    “We will be working to build support for the Bill from MPs across the UK and are confident of a convincing majority in favour. We now look to Parliament to uphold the rights of people in Northern Ireland and to respond to overwhelming public support here.

    “However, the rights of LGBT people in Northern Ireland to be treated equally should not be left to the Private Member’s Bill process. We repeat our call on the UK Government to introduce legislation to bring Northern Ireland’s laws on marriage equality into line with the rest of the UK and Ireland.”

    The Love Equality campaign for equal civil marriage in Northern Ireland is led by the Rainbow Project, Amnesty International, Irish Congress of Trade Unions, Cara-Friend, NUS-USI and HereNI.

  • Children’s Funeral Fund

    Every year, around 10,000 parents have to endure the pain of losing a child and many struggle to meet the cost of paying for a funeral – and for some this is an impossible task.

    We must do everything we can to help parents, who already facing a terrible situation, avoid the further nightmare of being plunged into debt through funeral costs.

    That’s why Conor is supporting a campaign calling on the Government to set up a new fund to help bereaved parents with the cost of children’s funerals, supporting Labour colleague Carolyn Harris MP, who struggled to pay for her young son Martin’s funeral after he was killed in a car accident at the age of eight in 1989.

    It is high time the Government acted and followed the lead of the Welsh Labour Government and introduced a Children’s Funeral Fund

  • Conor meets local early education and child care providers in westminster

    Conor meet with Nicole Politis, director of Portico Day Nurseries, which operates in Moss Bank and across St Helens, in Parliament to discuss what more the Government can do to support families who need childcare.

    Conor is Vice Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Child Care and Early Education, it is vital that children get the best possible care that doesn’t break the family bank.

    But this Tory Government is not doing enough to support high quality childcare, with more than 1,000 early years providers closing down since 2015.

    On top of this, the Government’s promised 30 hours of free childcare a week is only available for 38 weeks of the year, meaning less flexibility and higher prices for families.

    That’s why the next Labour Government will properly fund childcare and high quality early years education for all 2 to 4 year olds, supporting young families and giving children the best possible start in life.

  • Glass Futures

    St Helens Borough has a world leading reputation and a proud industrial history in the production of high quality glass, with Pilkington leading the way.
    Conor celebrated this and the future of the industry at the Glass Futures event in Parliament and to promote St Helens as a new centre of excellence for research & development, innovation and training.
    Conor is working closely with British Glass, the local authority, government and other sectors to ensure that we can build a new economic success story of glass in St Helens at the cutting edge of technological change in the years to come.

     

  • End Hunger UK campaign

    Conor is backing a campaign by End Hunger UK and Labour colleague Emma Lewell-Buck MP to measure ‘hidden hunger’ and fight food poverty in St Helens and across the country.

    New figures have shown that more than one in ten adults and more than a quarter of parents with children under 18 are skipping meals because of a lack of money.

    Throughout the North West, more than 170,000 three day emergency food parcels were distributed to people in need last year – up from just 7,400 five years’ ago.

    Despite this, food insecurity is not properly measured across the UK – meaning there is no quality national data to quantify the scale of the problem. Hardworking volunteers and organisations do excellent work feeding those in need across our borough, but they can’t be properly supported if the Government doesn’t measure their work.

    This is absolutely unacceptable in 21st Century Britain. The Government has a duty to tackle food poverty and must act to properly measure the scale of food insecurity so we can end hunger for good.

     

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