Here's your latest edition of Denton and Reddish Weekly News.
We still have a couple more weeks of national restrictions. Here's the current Government guidance:
National restrictions from 5 November ([link removed])
Take care and stay safe.
** Gwynne urges constituents to sign petition calling for action on shop worker abuse
To mark National Respect for Shopworkers Week, Denton and Reddish MP Andrew Gwynne is encouraging constituents to sign Usdaw’s petition to protect retail workers from abuse, violence and threats.
The petition, on Parliament’s website, calls for legislation that creates a specific offence of abusing, threatening or assaulting a retail worker, carrying a penalty that acts as a deterrent to make it clear that abuse of retail workers is unacceptable.
The Coronavirus pandemic has seen cases of abuse, threats and violence towards retail workers increase significantly. Results from an Usdaw survey of 2,000 shop staff has found:
* 76% say abuse has been worse than normal during the Covid-19 pandemic,
* 85% of shopworkers have experienced verbal abuse,
* 57% were threatened by a customer,
* 9% were assaulted.
Andrew Gwynne said:
“Violence, abuse and threatening behaviour is absolutely unacceptable in any workplace, but unfortunately we’ve seen this become far too commonplace in retail.
“Retail workers have played such an important role in keeping our country going during this crisis and the fact that they have increasingly had to experience abuse is appalling.
“I agree with Usdaw that we need new legislation to help protect these key workers and would encourage all of my constituents to sign the petition so that this can be debated in Parliament.
You can sign the petition here. ([link removed])
** Supporting our care workers
When Boris Johnson first became Prime Minister last Summer (although the pandemic months make it feel much longer ago) he came out on his doorstep and said – and I quote – “I am announcing now – on the steps of Downing Street – that we will fix the crisis in social care once and for all with a clear plan we have prepared”. We then had a General Election and the Tory manifesto left us none the wiser as to what this “clear plan” was. We’re almost 16 months on from that first speech now and still we haven’t seen this fabled plan.
In the meantime, we have been plunged into the biggest health emergency that this country has seen in any of our lifetimes and carers have been on the frontline. Johnson was out on his doorstep applauding them with the rest of us, but still no plan or clarity. Instead, we sadly saw the Government fail to protect our carers and those they care for in the early months of the pandemic, allowing Covid-positive patients to be discharged into care-homes and failing to provide the necessary PPE to keep staff and residents safe.
As with so much else during this crisis, it has been left to our local councils to step in and show compassion and leadership, and I have been particularly impressed by Labour-led Stockport Council’s action to support carers and care homes.
This has included paying occupational sick pay from the first day of absence, paying holiday, sleep-ins and travel-time at the full hourly rate and ending the use of zero hour contracts to give more certainty to staff.
Furthermore, 100% of Stockport care home staff have received Covid-19 training and care homes have been given support and funding to keep employees at the appropriate rate, procure PPE and other medical supplies. The Council has also passed on approximately £9 million to care providers and donated tablets to care homes to help residents keep in touch with family and friends.
The Ethical Care Charter manifesto pledge that Stockport Labour was elected on also means that Stockport Council provides an uplift to care providers, making sure care workers received the Real Living Wage.
All of this is taking place in the context of over a decade of cuts to local government budgets. At the start of this crisis, the Tory Local Government Secretary told councils to spend whatever it takes to deal with the crisis, but he has since kept quiet and failed to provide the funding – Croydon Council declared bankruptcy just this week and sadly more may follow.
With this in mind, I’m particularly grateful to Stockport Council (and particularly Cllr Jude Wells, the Cabinet Member for Adult Care and Health) for doing so much for our brilliant care workers – and those they care for – at such a difficult time.
** Gwynne welcomes Coronavirus funding for local charities
Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, has welcomed the news that three local charities have received funding from the Coronavirus Community Support Fund.
Gwynne encouraged local charities to apply ([link removed]) for the funding, which was intended to support organisations to continue to deliver services to people and communities affected by COVID-19, back in May.
It was announced earlier this month that three charities from the Denton and Reddish constituency have received a combined £23,538 from the fund. These charities are Tameside Arts Limited (Denton), Keira’s Kingdom (Reddish) and Carmel Christian Centre (Denton).
Andrew Gwynne said:
“Charities have played a vital role during the Coronavirus crisis, but unfortunately many have found themselves in financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic.
“This fund is a really good starting point for helping charities to recover, but I would urge the Government to look at what more can be done as the sector is in real difficulty.
“Congratulations to the three charities in Denton and Reddish who were successful in their applications for funding – it is very well deserved!”
Read More of This Week's Stories ([link removed])
Andrew in the constituency
This afternoon it’s been my pleasure to join Julie Bell at Denton Community College to thank staff and pupils for collecting for the Children's Hospital Pyjamas campaign.
Six hospitals in Greater Manchester will benefit from the pyjamas collected and donated this year. A BIG thank you to everyone who’s supported this cause. Over 600 pairs of PJs have been secured!
‼️ You can still donate. In particular they still need boys’ sizes from age 11 up.
You can donate online here 👇🏻
[link removed] ([link removed])
Andrew in Parliament
Here are videos of some of my contributions in the House of Commons this week:
📺 WATCH: The Towns Fund was supposed to help “level-up” deprived communities. Instead the Secretary of State has used it as a slush fund for Tory marginal seats.
There wasn’t even a blush that Cheadle got £25m from him!
📺 WATCH: At International Trade Questions I asked the Secretary of State about her efforts to secure a trade deal with the USA following the election of Joe Biden.
It’s also interesting to note the comments of the Canadian Prime Minister about her efforts to secure a deal with that country!
Clearly it hit a raw nerve.
📺 WATCH: I’m pleased the Government has announced £300m funding to support struggling sport clubs in England who’ve seen gate receipts disappear with COVID restrictions.
I also praise broadcasters for televising more events free-to-view.
Andrew in the media
📰 READ: The Correspondent covered my visit to Denton Community College yesterday. Thanks again to all those students and staff who have donated so many pairs of pyjamas and to Julie from Children's Hospital Pyjamas for all her hard work!
Read the full article here. ([link removed])
For the first time, the charity Children's Hospital Pyjamas is collecting donations of children's pyjamas in Greater Manchester.
These will go to Tameside Hospital, Stepping Hill Hospital and MRI Hospital for Children.
You can find out more, including how to donate, here. ([link removed])
Christ Church is part of the community of Reddish providing church services and community events along with being home to the longest running drama group in Reddish ‘The Green Group.’ Christ Church is an old building with substantial upkeep costs the majority of which are funded by the income from the Green Group’s shows. Covid has meant these shows couldn't take place. Christ Church and the Green Group are running a GoFundMe to keep the church open.
You can find out more and donate here. ([link removed])
Eight community credit unions in Greater Manchester have joined together to launch a Covid-19 recovery plan.
The Consortium, known as Sound Pound, wants to show communities across the city region that there is light at the end of the tunnel and that their local community credit union is there to support them at this time of uncertainty and financial hardship.
You can find out more on the Sound Pound website. ([link removed])
The Team Hiitman YouTube channel is available here. ([link removed])
Our mailing address is:
139 St Annes Road
Manchester, Greater Manchester M34 3DY
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Andrew Gwynne . 139 St Annes Road . Denton . Manchester, Greater Manchester M34 3DY . United Kingdom
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