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Jo Stevens MP My annual report to you: 2019-20

My year in numbers:

72

advice surgeries

4734

constituents supported

202

Parliamentary questions

www.jostevens.co.uk


Hello, I hope you, your family and your friends are safe and well. This is my fifth annual report to you, having had the honour to be reelected in December as your Member of Parliament. In this report, I hope to provide a snapshot of what I have done on your behalf during the past year both in Parliament and at home in Cardiff Central. The last six months have been very difficult for us all. I want to thank and pay tribute to everyone who has worked so hard to provide essential services to our community. So many people have done so much to ensure our safety and well-being. Thanks also to all the volunteers whose individual acts of kindness made such a difference. And thank you to everyone who continues to follow regulations to stop the spread of COVID-19. The pandemic has meant a change in how I have been working. Parliament went virtual and all the casework I do on behalf of constituents has had to be done over email, telephone and digitally. If you have a problem or query you think I and my team might be able to help with, please don’t hesitate to get in touch using the details on the back of this report.

Jo

Are you registered to vote? Anyone over the age of 16 can now register to vote in Wales. Legally resident foreign nationals will also be able to vote in next year’s Senedd elections, which will be the first run under this new system. Registering is quick and easy, you can register here: Jo Stevens MP

www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

Promoted by James Brinning on behalf of Cardiff Central Labour Party, both at 116 Albany Road, Cardiff, CF24 3RU. Printed by Spectrum Printing, Unit B3, South Point, Cardiff, CF10 4SP.


2019 General Election The Autumn saw unprecedented political turmoil with months of Brexit uncertainty. The Government lost its majority, Theresa May resigned, the Government’s EU Withdrawal Bill was voted down three times and the Supreme Court gave a judgment declaring Boris Johnson’s suspension of Parliament unlawful. He called a snap general election for 12th December. In very cold and wet campaigning conditions, I knocked thousands of doors with our brilliant team of volunteers and continued to listen carefully to voters across Cardiff Central. When the result was declared at City Hall in the early hours, I was very grateful and proud to be reelected as your Labour MP for the third time in four and a half years. I will continue to listen to you and be your strong voice in Parliament and here at home.

Thank you so much for your support.

Brexit With an 80 seat Conservative majority after the general election, the passing of the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill was always going to be a sad formality. Johnson instructed his MPs to vote down our Labour amendments to the Bill which would have protected our rights at work, guaranteed family reunion rights for refugee children stuck in desperate situations abroad who have family here, guaranteed the rights of EU citizens in the UK after Brexit and continue the UK’s membership of the Erasmus+ scheme. The UK has now left the EU but Johnson’s “oven ready” deal is nowhere to be seen. In Parliament I have fought and voted to protect our NHS, environmental and food standards and our rights at work as significant new laws for the post Brexit era are made. With Labour colleagues I will continue to scrutinise the Government’s actions and try to minimise the damage.


Digital,Culture, Media & Sport work Following Keir Starmer’s election as Labour Party leader, I was appointed to the Shadow Cabinet. As Shadow Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport I lead on these areas, along with tourism, heritage and charities for Labour. The sector has been extremely badly hit by COVID-19 with organisations and businesses amongst the first to shut down and many will be the last to re-open.

Campaigning for financial support for the DCMS sectors From the beginning of the crisis I have pressed the UK Government for financial support for the sector and for the skilled and talented people who make it the fastest growing sector of the UK economy. In the Commons and across the media, I’ve used every available opportunity to speak up for those excluded from government support, especially freelancers. Working with individuals, unions and organisations, we challenged hard for financial support and finally in early July, the Government announced a £1.57bn package. Barely any of the money has reached the people who need it and so I will keep working to ensure it is urgently distributed. Continuing the fight against fake news and disinformation online I’ve spent nearly four years investigating this huge problem and pressing the government to bring forward legislation to make the internet a safer, fairer and more inclusive space. From terrorism and hate crime to child abuse, financial scams, electoral interference and disinformation, we are all exposed to online harms. During the pandemic, we have spent nearly a quarter of every day online, so the concerns for child safety and the public health risks from the promotion and spread of conspiracy theories about Coronavirus, 5G and anti-vaccine claims have increased. Legislation is urgently needed and three years after their promise to legislate, we’re still waiting for the Tory Government’s Bill.


Coronavirus The pandemic has turned life as we know it completely on its head. The grim daily death toll, with every death a painful, awful loss for a family and their friends. It will take us a long time to recover and for many people, there won’t ever be a recovery. In this context, the way in which our community pulled together in support of each other has been inspirational.

Helping Cardiff Central Through the Pandemic Throughout the pandemic I’ve been helping businesses and individuals in Cardiff Central access the support schemes and business rate reductions, grants and loans put in place by the Welsh and UK Governments amid the unprecedented financial pressures people faced. Casework for constituents more than doubled as I and my team dealt with every imaginable inquiry and request for help that the pandemic has produced. I’ve been helping local businesses who urgently adapted and traded during lockdown with my #DiffOnline campaign, promoting as many businesses across Cardiff Central as I could to get the word out that they were still open for business. I and my team worked to bring constituents safely home who were stranded across the world at the start of the pandemic. As COVID-19 drove travel companies and airlines into meltdown, we helped repatriate constituents from countries including Peru, Spain, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, India, Syria and Iraq. Working with Labour colleagues across the UK, our pressure secured government agreement to charter flights and to provide financial support for people to return home safely.


Your Strong Voice

Visiting the Cardiff Summer Squad scheme at Bryn Ce lyn Primary schoo l in Pentwyn.

nd litter pick in Enjoying a weeke responsibility of the It’s . wn Adamsdo nderful green wo r ou p all of us to kee year around. all y tid d an spaces clean

e Foundation Supporting the Fairtrad for urgent in Parliament and calling tion of action to end the exploita women cocoa farmers.

urers

ity lect Supporting Cardiff Univers unfair and staff striking against ember. pension changes in Nov

Visiting Bute Park Nursery and the Education Centre on site, where the hanging baskets we see in the City Centre each year are produced.

Music venues and nightclu bs have been extremely hard hit by COVID-19. I met with own er, Rob, to discuss further support needed for our night time econom y

Day Supporting World Hearing ional in Parliament with the Nat People. Association of Deafened

Campaigning to save free TV licences for the over 75s. Another broken Tory manifesto promise that will leave the most vulnerable more isolated and worse off.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the foodba nk collection from my offic e - which had to stop just prior to the Pandemic. I’ll be running more in future.


for Cardiff Central

Visiting the iconic Kelly’s Records in Cardiff Indoor Market to see how COVID-19 has affected their trade .

Challenging the Govern ment after severely disabled constitu ents were wrongly moved from ESA to Universal Credit, leaving them in extreme hardship.

the Wall Butchers Visiting the Hole in ar how they he to in Adamsdown n, and how trade adapted in lockdow restrictions have is recovering now . ed eas

las Centre in Visiting the Al-Ikh nk them for their Adamsdown to tha y work, including nit amazing commu tion throughout a foodbank collec families in need the pandemic for ff. rdi Ca oss acr

2019. MacMillan Coffee Morning rning raising Another great coffee mo Thanks once vital funds for Macmillan. eside for again to Waterloo Tea Lak hosting us so well.

At the fantastic ne w Castle Quarter Cafe in the City Ce ntre, which will remain open for the rest of the summer to boost Cardiff Central businesses through these hard times.

I’ve always been an ardent supporter of the rea l Living Wage, it was great to sho w my support again at this year’s Parliamentary reception.

Visiting Gareth and Jon at the (still) reigning Parliamentary Pub of the Year, the Four Elms, to see the additional measures they’ve put in place to open after lockdown.

many activities Learning about the h nts at St Teilos Hig de stu for er off on eme. sch r me sum l oo Sch


Post COVID-19 Recovery Survey This magazine has included some of my highlights of the last year. It’

I am running a survey on what you think our post COVID-19 recovery should focus on.

If you live in Cardiff Central, please let me know your views. Please visit http://jostevens.co.uk/COVIDsurvey and tell me what you think. Thank you.

Keep in Touch Jo Stevens MP Phone: 02921 329 736 Email: jo.stevens.mp@parliament.uk Online: Twitter: @JoStevensLabour fb.com/JoStevensLabour www.jostevens.co.uk Instagram: jostevensmp

Office: 116 Albany Road, Cardiff, CF24 3RU Newsletter: Sign up now to receive my monthly email newsletter with updates on my work in Parliament and the constituency: http://bit.ly/JSMPNews

Promoted by James Brinning on behalf of Cardiff Central Labour Party, both at 116 Albany Road, Cardiff, CF24 3RU. Printed by Spectrum Printing, Unit B3, South Point, Cardiff, CF10 4SP.

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Jo Stevens MP Annual Report 2019-20  

A snapshot of my work as your MP over the last year.

Jo Stevens MP Annual Report 2019-20  

A snapshot of my work as your MP over the last year.

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