Covid lockdown 

Many of you would have been looking forward to today for the lifting of remaining lockdown restrictions. Instead, it’s been necessary to delay the last stage of the roadmap by four weeks – a situation entirely of the Government’s making because of its complacency and incompetence in letting the highly transmissible Delta variant take root and spread in the UK.  I know this is both hugely disappointing and extremely damaging to many businesses in Brighton and Hove which were relying on being able to open today after an incredibly difficult 15 months. 

It is now essential that those businesses which are losing out are properly supported, and the winding down of schemes like the business rates holiday and the increased employer contribution to furlough are put on hold in affected sectors.  I wrote to the Chancellor last week setting out the support he needs to deliver (you can read the letter on my website here) and also tabled an Early Day Motion in Parliament. I was pleased that shortly after, the Government extended the commercial eviction ban – one of the measures I had called for.   

Covid and carers 

Carers have been some of the unsung heroes of the pandemic but the past 15 months have been huge strain on them.  A survey by Carers UK found nearly 3 in 4 have had no break from caring during the pandemic and have lost, on average, 25 hours of support a month they previously had from family, friends or local services.  I heard some heart-breaking stories from unpaid carers at a virtual parliamentary drop-in event to mark Carers Week, and fully back calls by Carers UK for more support for carers. 

G7 summit 

The outcome of the G7 summit was deeply disappointing, both on vaccines and climate which were two of the main issues under discussion.  Boris Johnson talked about “vaccinating the world”, but the pledge of 1 billion vaccines is less than 10% of what the WHO says is needed, and it won’t be until September that the UK delivers its first contribution of 5 million doses. 

The vaccine nationalism being shown by this Government is both morally wrong and counter-productive.  Poorer countries need vaccines now if we are to reduce the risk of variants emerging and being imported to the UK.  I raised this with the Health Secretary in Parliament urging him to adopt a jab-matching policy – yet again, I didn’t get a satisfactory response. 

On climate, there were headline pledges on the phase-out of coal but no end to investment in new oil and gas developments.  Nor did G7 leaders make good on the commitment they gave more than 10 years ago to provide all of the $100 billion a year in climate finance to poorer countries on the frontline of the climate crisis.  The fund is still billions of dollars short. 

raised this with the Prime Minister during his statement on the G7 and, as usual, was treated to a list of the UK’s supposed climate achievements.  The PM’s boosterism and boasting on this issue is completely misplaced.  If he had read that day’s devastating report from the Government’s own advisers, the Committee on Climate Change, about the risks the UK is facing and how much worse they are getting owing to government inaction, he would not have been so complacent.  

I wrote about the outcome of the G7 summit in the iPaper. 

International Aid 

The UK hosted the G7 against the backdrop of a cut in the UK aid budget.  I joined the chairs of 10 other all party parliamentary groups in writing to the Prime Minister urging him to reverse this cut, which the WHO says could cost millions of lives around the world.  

Fire safety in apartment blocks 

I have been working with residents in a number of blocks in Brighton over their concerns about fire safety.  The blocks are too low to be covered by the Government’s programme to fund cladding replacement only in buildings over 18 metres, and in any case, the fire hazards aren’t about cladding.  I have asked a number of written questions of the housing minister (some of them are herehere and here) and I will be writing to the housing minister to see if he will meet with residents from the 11 blocks affected, who are being placed under huge strain, facing huge costs for “waking watches” and unable to sell their homes, if they want to move. 

Meeting with heads of BHASVIC,  Varndean College and GBMet

I met with the heads of our local colleges and sixth forms and our wide-ranging discussions covered issues from the costs of Covid compliance (still not covered by the Government) through to the importance of addressing the long-standing under-funding of student places by raising the base rate of funding per student in sixth forms and colleges, and the importance of maintaining the B-tech qualification.  I will be raising these with relevant Ministers 

Young people and homelessness 

You may remember that I have been pushing the Government to end the discrimination against homeless young people and care leavers whose housing benefit is about half the amount that over-25s can claim, putting vulnerable young people at greater risk of ending up sleeping rough.  In the budget in March, the Chancellor did agree to do this, but not for another three years.  I’m really pleased that the Government has now listened to those of us calling for change, and from this month they will get the additional support which gives them at least a chance of finding a home.  

Project Wood Store 

Some of you in Brighton and Hove will be aware of Project Wood Store, a brilliant scheme to recycle waste timber so that it’s seen as a precious resource, not simply discarded.  It also provides jobs, work placements, training and volunteering opportunities, working particularly with marginalised people.  It’s moving to new premises, and has launched a crowdfunder to help fit it out. Woodstore would be hugely grateful for any support you can give 

Penny Kemp 

I was incredibly said to learn of the death of Penny Kemp, a longstanding Green Party activist and former head of communications for the party.  I worked with her in the late 1980s and she was a brilliant boss, immensely kind and great fun.  She was also a tireless champion for the climate and nature, long before those campaigns became mainstream.  I’ve been asked to talk about her on the BBC Radio 4 programme ‘The Last Word’. 




Contacting Me

If you are a local resident and need help with case work or to find out more about my activities locally please do contact me at the office of: Caroline Lucas MP, Brighton Media Centre 15-17 Middle Street, Brighton BN1 1AL. Tel: 01273 201 130. Email: [email protected]

I hold regular surgeries across the constituency. If you would like to book an appointment at a forthcoming surgery please call Liz Collis on 01273 201130. She coordinates my constituency office and is able to help with most local enquiries.

If you would like to know about my parliamentary work please get in touch at the House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA. Tel: 020 7219 7025. Email: [email protected]

You can also keep up to date with my news on:

Twitter: @carolinelucas

Facebook: /

My Website:

To unsubscribe from this mailing list, click here

The Biscuit Factory
Unit 215 J Block
100 Clements Road
SE16 4DG
United Kingdom