It is nearly a year since I was elected as your MP. At the time of the Election all our focus was on Brexit. We had no sight of Covid-19 or that it would consume our lives in the way that it has - that we would have to lockdown our country, our lives and our economy, not once, but twice. We have all done what we can to keep as much of the country working with a regional strategy, but the medical evidence we saw on television last Saturday is overwhelming and we have again had to lockdown to save lives and protect the NHS. However, I will be asking the Prime Minister to make the lockdown as short as possible and then return to the regional policy so we can do everything to protect jobs and businesses. We also need a long-term solution to how we live with this virus. This is an incredibly worrying time for everyone in Stourbridge and I will be doing all I can to ensure that local people and companies receive the support they need.
Just before half term I had the privilege to meet with pupils and staff at Colley Lane Primary Academy. I was so impressed with the leadership and dedication of all the staff and the work they have done to ensure education continued during lockdown. I would like to take this opportunity to thank every school in my constituency for all that they do, from those who work in the canteen to the playground supervisors, the teaching assistants, the teachers and the heads. All who have worked through the first lockdown and now will during the second lockdown; making their own sacrifices to keep our children safe and educated. I would also like to mention and praise those working in our Job Centres, who have risen to the challenges that Covid-19 has brought to our economy and the impact on employment. I met with the local Dudley Borough and Stourbridge team only last week, thanking every single one of them for what they are doing to help people back into work or to support those not in work. They have set up Youth Hubs and Skill Shops and provided round the clock frontline support at a time of national crisis.
Thank you to every single one of you for all that you are doing to keep your family and loved ones safe, to keep our community safe, to keep our beloved NHS safe. These are testing times, but we will come through them and it will all be down to the strength of who you all are. Please do keep looking out for your neighbours, those vulnerable and those most in need. Finally, please keep following the guidelines - encourage all to do so - this virus does not discriminate, it affects everyone.
I am still available to help any constituent with any issues they may have. If you would like to contact me you can email me via email on firstname.lastname@example.org or call my office on 01384 370 574.