From Helen Whately MP <[email protected]>
Subject Welcome to my newsletter
Date December 16, 2022 6:14 PM
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An update on my work for people in Faversham and Mid Kent

** Christmas 2022
A beautiful snowy day in Parliament earlier this week
I think it’s important, especially at Christmas, to count your blessings.

For the first time in 3 years, December hasn’t brought with it a new covid variant and chaos for our Christmas plans. This year, all being well, we’ll have a proper Christmas, together with our families, friends, and communities – something worth being grateful for.

In fact we've even had snow this week both at home and in Westminster, where it left us with some absolutely magical scenes.

After a turbulent year, things have returned to normal in Parliament in the last six weeks, with important legislation being passed and big announcements made.

Since he took office Rishi has been determined to get on and deliver for the British people, and the plans he set out this week to tackle the small boats crisis once and for all are testament to that.

We have to put an end people losing their lives in the Channel trying to come to the UK. We need an asylum system which is fair – with safe routes for people to come here legally but no tolerance for those who don’t – and his plan will do just that.

As you’ll have seen in the Chancellor’s recent fiscal statement, public finances are under real pressure at the moment after covid and the war in Ukraine. But even now we’ve still got to deliver on people’s priorities, and that’s why there was more money announced for schools and the NHS.

Helping serve a fish and chips lunch recently in Boughton-Under-Blean
I know how much good that money can do locally as we educate our children and work to clear the NHS backlog.

This is on top of lots of other good news, like the announcement today that Lenham School’s going to be getting funding through the Schools Rebuilding Programme. And as Health Minister I’ve been working on getting more people cared for in the right place this winter – and Kent’s going to be getting over £5 million of funding to help free up hospital beds.

I’ve also been working flat out on other problems that matter to local residents – supporting people with the cost of living, fighting for a solution to Operation Brock, getting Government support for Faversham’s swing bridge, talking to police about rural crime, and making sure Maidstone’s development meets our needs.

You can find out about this and much more below.

Times are tough right now, and I know that for lots of people this Christmas will be even more difficult than the last two. We continue to pay a heavy price for standing with the people of Ukraine in their fight for freedom against oppression - a stand that our children and grandchildren will one day thank us for.

Throughout this year, just like with covid, we’ve made sure that support reaches those that needed it, and I promise you we’re going to keep on doing that for as long needs be.

We will get through this together - just as we did with covid, and with everything else we’ve been through in the past.

Wishing you a very happy Christmas and new year.

In All Saints Church in Hollingbourne - presenting my Christmas card competition winner with their prize!

Launching my cost of living webpage

I've been working with local partners to make sure support reaches those who need it - including creating a webpage packed full of information.

Click here to access ([link removed])

** Feeding into Maidstone's Design Plan

Development in Maidstone needs to look great, protect green space, and meets residents' needs.

Read my submission ([link removed])

** Quizzed by local schools during Parliament Week

I met students in Kingswood, Leeds, & Sutton Valence to answer their questions about Parliament recently.

Find out more here ([link removed][0]=AZVoPRX0DecP45lL97NLMAG3g6lk80KPLaoUvtRyv7EYstwlHT_4WmlSrRVlhPeI9hnHif9GZbYwvRK9QxH-fsIiu4ExT-jz85DEGCSDGkVMJzPRqof85tcuRDq9xbQK03y0SPgVPRY9-HPn6rQT3rUxLp8W3zJ2KCrj_z7V_YN8UL4wFr2oZ8y4wV0P3fIYOVE&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R)

** Asking Maritime Minister for swing bridge help

I called a meeting with the Maritime Minister to ask for her help in getting Faversham's swing bridge repaired.

Find out what we agreed ([link removed])

** Cash boost to get people home from hospital

As Care Minister I've been working on joining up our NHS and care system - getting more people cared for in the right place this winter

Find out how Kent will benefit ([link removed])

[link removed]

** Sunday deadline to claim Pension Credit

A quarter of pensioners eligible for Pension Credit don't claim - but it's worth £3,300 a year on average and if you claim by this Sunday (18th) you'll also get a £324 cost of living payment.

More info on ([link removed]) how to claim here ([link removed])

** Good news on rural energy support

I've been campaigning for clarity for park home residents and heating oil users locally, and got some good news from ministers recently.

Find out more here ([link removed][0]=AZXKonvzzYZ-nCOXq8UPb-TSuvyao4LvXSDhCrt5mr8_D1T19PdGHWZSUyX2KY1E2ZgiHRc9-vb_IVAlpxgn9vRUTsfkwWKMap6N6E-PxfmcqNSeyLK5nlx7_MVDI3lkzAYiZydkEelvamX64_NUaGXe-7WA1SDwN5i1mK5rVHxiSMIRDy50n81ZI0uZLaSmqEA&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R)

** Cash boost for The Lenham School

I supported Lenham School to get funding through the Government's Schools Rebuilding Programme.

Read more about the scheme ([link removed])

** Naming my MPHERo

I met local entrepreneur Denise Kesson in Parliament recently, after nominating her for an award recognising her and her business' outstanding success

Find out why I nominated her ([link removed])

** Choosing my Christmas card competition winner

Congratulations to Hannah Kaliska from Hollingbourne Primary School - the Prime Minister loved the design

See her winning design here ([link removed])

Meeting Matilda and Freddie the Happy Endings donkeys at their fundraising event in Faversham
Wishing you a very happy Christmas and new year!
If there's anything else I can help you with please email me at [email protected]
Please pass this email onto anyone you think might be interested and encourage them to sign up to these newsletters on my website, here ([link removed]) .

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