From JOHNSON, Gareth <[email protected]>
Subject Boosters, motorways and elections
Date February 1, 2022 8:28 AM
  Links have been removed from this email. Learn more in the FAQ.
  Links have been removed from this email. Learn more in the FAQ.
[[link removed]]
Gareth Johnson
MP for Dartford

Reporting back from Dartford and Westminster - now reaching over 5,000 people in the local area

January 2022

[[link removed]]
Return to Plan A following success of booster programme

On 27th January 2022, we returned to Plan A, thanks to the success of the booster programme.

This means the following:

* The Government is no longer asking people to work from home.
* Face coverings no longer advised in classrooms for staff and pupils.
* Face coverings are no longer required by law in any setting. Public health guidance will remain in place, suggesting individuals should continue to wear a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces, where you may come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
* The Department for Education will remove national guidance on the use of face coverings in communal areas, with local directors of public health able to recommend the use of face coverings in education settings across their area only where the department and public health experts judge the measure to be proportionate due to specific health concerns. This is a temporary measure and directors of public health continue to advise individual settings experiencing outbreaks.
* Any local introduction of face coverings must be subject to routine review and removed at the earliest opportunity.
Due to the success of the booster programme, with over 31 million boosters given in England, the situation continues to improve.

The latest data from the UK Health Security Agency shows that getting a booster is 89% effective in preventing hospitalisation from Covid-19 from two weeks after it is administered and is 65 to 75% effective against symptomatic infection from Omicron.

In Dartford there has been a good uptake of the booster, with more than 211,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccination (including 1st, 2nd and booster doses) being administered.

I would urge everyone to come forward and take up the offer of vaccination and a booster to ensure they have as much protection as possible.

For full details of where the vaccinations are taking place and how to book an appointment, please click on the link below.

Covid-19 vaccine<[link removed]>

[[link removed]]
UK open for travel with all restrictions removed for eligible vaccinated arrivals

* From 4am on 11th February all testing requirements will be removed for eligible fully vaccinated arrivals, with only a Passenger Locator Form (PLF) now required.
* Arrivals who are not recognised as fully vaccinated will only need to take a pre-departure test and a PCR test on or before day 2 after they arrive in the UK.
* Children aged 12-15 in England will be able to prove their vaccination status or proof of prior infection via a digital NHS COVID Pass from 3rd February for outbound travel.
* Travel changes come in ahead of February half term and follow the success of the booster programme.

[[link removed]]
Dartford summary data for Covid-19 cases

[[link removed]]
Smart motorways

I was pleased to see the recent announcement by the Transport Secretary to pause the rollout of Smart motorways pending safety data. Whilst further schemes are paused, all existing All Lane Running Smart motorways will be equipped with the best-in-class technology and resources to make sure they are as safe as they can be.

The plan is to retrofit more Emergency Areas across existing Smart motorways, conduct an independent evaluation of the effectiveness of stopped vehicle detection technology; explore the introduction of the emergency corridor manoeuvre into the Highway Code and investigate the benefits of health and safety assessments being undertaken by the Office of Rail and Road.

The announcement means no further ALR Smart motorways will go ahead until five full years of safety data is available and follows recommendations by the Transport Committee last November.

I have campaigned for safety measures on Smart motorways for many years, following the death of an employee from Dynes Motor Group, a roadside rescue and recovery business based in Dartford. Steven Godbold was killed whilst carrying out a roadside recovery on a Smart motorway section of the M25 in September 2017. He is one of 39 people killed on these Smart motorways.

The lack of continuous hard shoulder on these roads makes it extremely dangerous for motorists who need to stop in an emergency, whether they have broken down or been involved in an accident and it is really challenging for recovery teams who are called to assist stranded drivers.

This pause and the added safety measures being introduced will allow the Government to collate all the information to make a clear judgement on the safety of Smart motorways. Smart motorways can help to keep motorways moving and avoid congestion but they need to be safe and too often this has not been the case.

National Farmers Union

I was delighted to meet recently with the local NFU members in Dartford, who gave me the interesting statistics below, as well as raising other issues with me.
[[link removed]]

[[link removed]]
Meeting with Foreign Secretary about the murder of George Low

Dartford resident, George Low, was just 22 years old when he was murdered on holiday in Ayia Napa in August 2016. He was stabbed and killed in an unprovoked attack.

Since then no one has faced justice for this crime, with the two suspects in the case fleeing to Northern Cyprus after the murder.

I have tried all avenues to seek justice for George, including travelling to Cyprus in a bid to have those responsible for his murder returned to Cyprus and put before the courts. However, because of the complicated political situation in Cyprus, the suspects have been able to evade justice. I have also met with the Turkish Ambassador.

I recently met with the new Foreign Secretary to discuss this case as I want to ensure that everything possible is being done by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office to help secure justice for George's family.

I have also been in contact with the UN Joint Committee on Crime and Criminal matters who have committed to discussing George's case when they next meet.

Dartford unemployment update

* There were 2,620 actual claimants in Dartford constituency in December 2021, which was 3.5% of the population aged 16-64. The equivalent UK claimant rate was 4.4%.

* This was 20 lower than November 2021 and 985 higher than March 2020, before the first UK lockdown began. Note the majority of this increase happened in March-May 2020 at the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

* There were 425 claimants aged 18-24 in December 2021, 10 lower than November 2021 and 105 higher than March 2020. This was 5.3% of the population aged 18-24. The equivalent UK claimant rate was 5.2%.

Dartford Borough and Kent County Council By-election results 2022

On 27th January there were three by-elections in Dartford. Wilmington, Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley ward were electing a new Borough Councillor as were Maypole and Leyton Cross ward. In addition, there was a Kent County Council by-election in Wilmington Division, following the sudden death of Councillor Ann Allen MBE last year.

The Conservatives held all three by-elections and you can see the results below.

[[link removed]]

[[link removed]]

[[link removed]]
[Gareth Johnson MP website]<[link removed]>

Gareth Johnson MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
Tel: 0207 219 7047
email: [email protected]<mailto:[email protected]>

Copyright © 2022, Gareth Johnson MP, All rights reserved.

To unsubscribe please reply to this email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

UK Parliament Disclaimer: this e-mail is confidential to the intended recipient. If you have received it in error, please notify the sender and delete it from your system. Any unauthorised use, disclosure, or copying is not permitted. This e-mail has been checked for viruses, but no liability is accepted for any damage caused by any virus transmitted by this e-mail. This e-mail address is not secure, is not encrypted and should not be used for sensitive data.
Screenshot of the email generated on import

Message Analysis