From Preet Kaur Gill MP <[email protected]>
Subject Here's your weekly update John
Date May 28, 2021 12:11 PM
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Dear John,

This week saw Dominic Cummings, the disgraced former special advisor to
Boris Johnson, answer questions in a seven-hour parliamentary committee
hearing. Many accusations were made against the Government and its
ministers by Cummings, with seemingly detailed information and insight. For
me, two things are very clear from this. First, the Government has been too
slow in its decision-making throughout the pandemic causing thousands of
unnecessary deaths. Secondly, there urgently needs an independent public
inquiry on the handling of the Covid crisis to understand exactly what has
happened and allow the thousands of bereaved families closure.

Yesterday, Dominic Cummings stated that he lied on 15 April 2020 when he
claimed that the Government had placed a protective ring around care homes.
Before this had even happened, I wrote to the Health Secretary, Matt
Hancock, raising my concerns about care homes being forced to take untested
as well as Covid positive patients. It wasn’t acceptable at the time and
now with hindsight, we can plainly see how truly criminal this
decision-making was.

However, this wasn’t the only example of how our country has been let
down leading to us having to pay the unforgivable price of the worst death
toll in Europe. It is the Governments delays and decisions that has led to
many tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths. The delays in implementing
the second and third national lockdowns were against scientific advice and
against calls made by the Labour Party. Now, we’ve seen how the
Government has continued to make questionable decisions, including those
around the red list and border controls that have allowed the “Indian
variant” to get a foothold in the country.

It is my view that we now need a public inquiry as soon as possible. The
serious allegations made by Dominic Cummings against so many of Boris
Johnson’s frontbench team urgently need to be addressed and investigated
and cannot wait until next year. Lessons from this pandemic need to be
learnt and bereaved families need closure.


Last week, following the survey I issued, I set out the steps that I will
be taking to address the excessive speeding that’s happening in Quinton
and Bartley Green. The first step was setting up regular speed watch groups
on some of the most problematic roads. Yesterday, we kicked off the first
session with support from West Midlands Police on Quinton Road West and
West Boulevard.

In 45 minutes, 20 people were caught driving at excessive speeds and I am
pleased to say, will be receiving a warning letter from the Police. While
this is just an interim measure, the more speed watch teams we have trained
up and sessions which are run, the greater the deterrent will become.

Ultimately, I am progressing the conversation with Birmingham City Council
and the Police to build the case for average speed cameras. From what I saw
over the course of an hour and speaking to local residents yesterday, it is
painfully clear that average speed cameras are the right solution for the
long stretches of road that not only encourage speeding but car racing as
well. I will continue to provide updates to residents as this progresses.



You might have caught me last weekend appearing on BBC Midlands Politics.
We discussed the reopening of the country, my concerns around the Indian
variant and the impact it could have on the relaxation of lockdown
measures. Primarily though, we spoke about the Clean Air Zone which is due
to come into force in Birmingham on Tuesday 1 June 2021. While the scheme
has been delayed with the pandemic, new testing shows that air pollution
levels in and around Birmingham City Centre are still at illegal levels and
urgently need to be reduced.

Let’s be clear though, the Clean Air Zone is set to target only the cars
which are most polluting – 75% of cars will not be charged for entering
the zone as many are already compliant. For those which aren’t, financial
support and advice is available. Some of the support available includes
dispensations while changes are made, bursaries to help with replacing
vehicles as well as the option of free bus travel.

Most importantly, the Clean Air Zone is set to change our behaviour when it
comes to how we think about climate change and travel. Any money which is
made from Clean Air Zone charges must be reinvested into our green
transport infrastructure, improving public transport which in turn will
encourage more people to make the transition from using their cars to
walking, cycling or using the improved public transport.

If you have further questions on the Clean Air Zone, please contact me
directly or visit the Clean Air Zone website, Brum Breathes.




Many of you, across Edgbaston constituency, have been upset by the
last-minute change in Government guidance that has been issued to amateur
choirs. The Government's own evidence shows us that singing is no more
dangerous than exercising in an enclosed space. With gyms and other leisure
facilities reopening, this seems unfair and illogical.

Without warning, guidance changed from what choirs had been led to expect.
A limit of six singers makes it impossible for most choirs to return to
either rehearsals or performance. What is even more discouraging is that
the health and wellbeing benefits of being part of a choir are
well-documented. For many, this news is devastating that’s why I have
written to Secretary of State, Oliver Dowden MP to ask why the decision
came so late and what was the evidence for the decision?


© 2020 Printed from an email sent by Preet Kaur Gill. Promoted by A.J Webb
on behalf of Preet Kaur Gill, both at 56 Wentworth Road, B17 9TA.

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