MP's Column

Carers and Support Workers Reception
Friday 6th November at 2.30pm

I am hosting a reception in my constituency office for anyone working as a care and support worker. Care and support workers do a fantastic job and are absolutely essential in the fight to keep people from unnecessary hospital stays. However, it is not an easy job to do physically or emotionally and deserves our support and appreciation. The reason I want an 'off the record' informal meeting with them on Friday is to provide an opportunity for them to tell me first-hand of the challenges and difficulties they face.

I want to do my bit to help them to do their job and help their employers negotiate contracts with the commissioners that eliminate unnecessary bureaucracy and reward care and support workers adequately. On Saturday I was humbled to see a care and support worker from Penhellis Community Care in action providing care and support to a gentleman in the closing stages of his life.

I am full of admiration for these workers who not only provide personal care but also become an invaluable source of support to loved ones. If you are a care and support worker and are available on Friday afternoon at 2.30pm please join me in my office on the second floor (above Argos) of Wharfside Shopping Centre, Penzance.

Tax Credits

On Tuesday (4th), along with Steve Double MP (Newquay and St Austell) and Scott Mann MP (North Cornwall) I am meeting with the Prime Minister to discuss the tax credit issue, the need to increase the amount we spend on care and support and on hospice care.

Fuel poverty

It's official. West Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has the highest level of fuel poverty in England. Recent research shows that families here are paying up to £1,460 extra annually for energy because of poorly insulated homes - the highest of all parliamentary constituencies in England. 50.4% of homes here are rated E,F or G for energy efficiency and will have significantly higher bills.

I have paid particular attention to the problem of fuel poverty since May and this research strengthens my argument that something must be done. After all there are sound reasons for addressing the problems and the benefits are considerable - lower household energy bills; fewer hospital admissions; more skilled jobs; better quality housing; lower cost of living etc.

I am asking the Government to invest a modest level of capital infrastructure funding to an energy efficiency programme. This will boost energy security and economic productivity, reduce fuel bills and save lives. West Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly is a good place to start and I will continue to champion this issue and seize this opportunity.