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Kingdom Time From: To: Aidan Burley MP firstname.lastname@example.org
In this edition:
Aidan Burley MP’s Diary Website of the Week: 1,000 Miles in 24 hours Sponsored Ride Aidan in Parliament: Aidan calls for Premiership Football Clubs to pay for full policing costs of games Aidan in Parliament: Aidan asks PM to reform rules on taxpayers funding trade union officials to do ‘political campaigning’ Aidan in Parliament: Defence Diplomacy Aidan in Parliament: Democratic deficit in police governance Aidan throws weight behind families’ campaign to end waste of NHS funds Photo news: New Terminal at Birmingham Airport Police should be crime-fighters, not form-writers UK resoundingly rejects AV Aidan in the media: MP Aidan Burley urges football clubs to pay more police costs Aidan in the papers: Week in Westminster Aidan in the papers: Week in Westminster How to contact Aidan Burley MP
Issue 15 – Thursday 19 th May 2011
Since the last edition, Aidan has:
· · · Asked a Question at Prime Ministers Question Time regarding taxpayer funded union officials. Questioned Home Office Ministers in the House of Commons on the democratic deficit in police governance. Hosted a debate in Westminster Hall calling for Premiership Football Clubs to pay for the costs of policing at matches. Met local constituents and family members living with muscle-wasting diseases as they gathered at Westminster to present a report to Health Minister Paul Burstow. Attended a Private Dinner with the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne in which he questioned him about increasing cost of prescriptions in England compared to Scotland. Taken part in a transport roundtable discussion on how improving the UK’s transport infrastructure will help the economy in general. Attended a meeting organised by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Aviation. Met with the Chairman of the BBC Trust Lord Pattern. Accompanied the Secretary of State for Transport to the opening of the new terminal building at Birmingham Airport. Attended a meeting of the Westminster Club at Cannock Conservative Club. Questioned Defence Ministers in the House of Commons about diplomacy. Welcomed neighbouring MP Jeremy Lefroy to the Cannock Chase MP Help Zone. The Help Zone is open 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday for all local residents to drop in – no appointment necessary - for help and advice from one of Aidan’s team.
· · · · · · ·
Website of the Week:
1,000 Miles in 24 hours Sponsored Ride
The fundraising page of local resident and ex-serviceman Tim Jones, a member of the Royal British Legion Riders Branch. On the 18 th of June 2011, he will be taking part in the RBLR 1000. The challenge is to Ride 1,000 miles in 24 hours on a motorbike to raise money for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal. The charity helps both veterans, but also currently serving personnel, offering financial and emotional aid to both them and their families. 2011 is the 90 th anniversary of the legion and Tim has set himself a target of raising £500 and with your help, he hopes to raise this and more. There is no minimum or maximum donation, as every little will help towards the goal. Anyone who would like to sponsor Tim, by giving an online donation can do so here: www.justgiving.com/riderstimjones-RBLR1000.
Aidan in Parliament:
Aidan calls for Premiership Football Clubs to pay for full policing costs of games
Wednesday 18 th May 2011
Click on the image above to watch Aidan’s Westminster Hall Debate. Aidan’s speech begins at 16:30:25. You can also click here to read the full text of Aidan’s speech and the Minister’s reply.
Aidan in Parliament:
Aidan asks PM to reform rules on taxpayers funding trade union officials to do ‘political campaigning’
Wednesday 18 th May 2011
Click on the image above to watch Aidan’s question to the Prime Minister. The full text of the exchange is below: Mr Aidan Burley (Cannock Chase) (Con): There are currently 2,500 trade union representatives across the public sector paid not to provide the service that they represent but to carry out campaigning activities that should be funded by the unions—and because the unions do not pay their salaries, they can spend their subs on other things, such as subsidising that lot over there. Does the Prime Minister not think it time that that was reformed? The Prime Minister: My hon. Friend raises an important point. [Hon. Members: “No he doesn’t!”] It is interesting that whenever someone raises a point about union funding they get shouted down by the Labour party, because Labour Members do not want any examination of what trade unions do, or how much money they give to the Labour party. [Interruption.] I think that they protest a little too much.
Aidan in Parliament:
Monday 16 th May 2011
Click on the image above to watch Aidan’s question to Defence Minister Gerald Howarth. Aidan’s question begins at 15:20.17. The full text of the exchange is below: Aidan Burley (Cannock Chase, Conservative): Does my right hon. Friend share my recognition of the critical importance of defence diplomacy to UK interests around the world? Will he update the House on what progress he has made on making amends for the decade of Labour neglect in this area? Gerald Howarth: (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (International Security Strategy), Defence; Aldershot, Conservative): I can assure my hon. Friend that since taking office we have set a new and vigorous pace to make up for the deficiencies of the previous Labour Administration. As my 1924 map of the British empire should remind everybody, the United Kingdom enjoys extensive historical ties with a large number of countries, giving us an unrivalled position. It is our policy to build on that strength through defence diplomacy, and we are doing so.
Aidan in Parliament:
Democratic deficit in police governance
Monday 9 th May 2011
Click on the image above to watch Aidan’s question to Home Office Minister Nick Herbert. Aidan’s question begins at 14:49.55. The full text of the exchange is below: Aidan Burley (Cannock Chase, Conservative): What steps she plans to take to increase links between police forces and local communities. Nick Herbert (Minister of State, Justice; Arundel and South Downs, Conservative): Reconnecting the police with the communities they serve is at the heart of our police reforms. Regular beat meetings and new local crime maps are already enabling communities to hold their local police to account. We will build on this through the introduction of police and crime commissioners, providing an even more visible and accountable link between the police and the public. Aidan Burley: Under the current system, only 7% of the public understand that they can approach a police authority if they are dissatisfied with the standard of service provided. Will my hon. Friend outline what he is doing to improve this democratic deficit in police governance and end Labour’s woeful legacy on police complaints? Nick Herbert: I agree: we are strengthening the police complaints system, while also proposing to strengthen police accountability through a democratic reform. Police authorities are invisible to the public. That will change when directly elected police and crime commissioners are elected by the people who will be able to hold their force to account; at the same time, the operational independence of chief constables will be protected.
Aidan throws weight behind families’ campaign to end waste of NHS funds
Aidan with Cannock Chase constituents Elizabeth and Philip Orme at a Muscular Dystrophy Campaign meeting in Westminster. Aidan Burley has pledged to back local families affected by devastating muscle-wasting disease in their fight for specialist services, which they say would change lives while saving the NHS millions of pounds in costs. Aidan met local constituents and family members living with musclewasting diseases as they gathered at Westminster to present the report to Health Minister Paul Burstow and to call for immediate action to address the waste. The health service is currently wasting £31million each year on distressing emergency hospital treatment for muscle-wasting disease patients that could have been entirely avoided through proper access to specialist care and equipment, according to a report published on Wednesday (11th May) in Parliament by a national charity The Muscular Dystrophy Campaign's report Invest to Save estimates that nearly 40 per cent of the £81million annual cost of emergency hospital care for the UK's the 70,000 people affected by musclewasting diseases is unnecessary and is a direct result of failure to invest adequately in ongoing treatment to manage the conditions. It is estimated that as much as £7.1million is wasted each year in the West Midlands alone. Commenting Aidan said: "I was shocked to hear about difficulties faced by patients and families in accessing the specialist musclewasting disease care they so clearly require. I am offering my full support for improvements in health care for people in Cannock Chase and across the country, which would save the NHS money while changing lives." Cannock Chase constituent Elizabeth Orme added: "Muscle-wasting diseases are rare and GPs, hospital staff and physiotherapists often know little about them. We need support and advice from people who fully understand our conditions and how to treat them. I was delighted to meet Aidan Burley at the reception and to have the opportunity to tell him why specialist care is so important to us. Aidan Burley's support for the Invest to Save campaign is absolutely crucial in ensuring that we see desperately needed improvements to specialist care for people with muscle-wasting diseases become a reality."
New Terminal at Birmingham Airport
Aidan Burley MP with Transport Secretary Philip Hammond at Birmingham Airport for the official opening of its new £13 million ‘one terminal’ building.
Police should be crime-fighters, not form-writers
Aidan Burley has welcomed the Home Secretary's commitment to fight crime by slashing police bureaucracy. In a speech on Monday, Theresa May outlined a package of reforms which will save 2.5 million police hours a year – the equivalent of 1200 officer posts. The reforms will cut paperwork above all by restructuring the police's performance review process, and simplifying crime recording. They will change the culture of policing by moving away from the tick box, cover-yourback culture of today. This is a truly radical change with Government committing to trust the police to get on with their job. Although Labour promised to cut bureaucracy, the police saw more paperwork not less. The police were directed by Whitehall diktat and spent their time chasing centrally-defined targets, rather than responding to the needs of local communities. Despite record spending, bureaucracy and form-filling kept police behind desks. A report last year by the police inspectorate found that only eleven per cent of police officers were visible and available to the public at any time. The Coalition Government is introducing a series of measures as part of their plan to fight crime: · Slashing bureaucracy. The new package of reforms will save an estimated 2.5 million hours of police time, the equivalent of 1200 officer posts. Steps have already been taken to save up to an additional 800,000 hours of police time by scrapping the stop form and limiting stop and search reporting. Removing all targets. All Labour's targets for the police have been scrapped and replaced with a single goal: to cut crime. Providing transparent information. Street-level crime maps on police.uk provide accurate information so local communities can see how police are dealing with crime in their area.
Commenting Aidan said: "This is a watershed moment for policing across Cannock Chase. After years of rising paperwork, Government is taking effective steps to cut crime by tackling the bureaucracy that keeps the police behind desks, not out on the streets. "Dealing with the paperwork from a simple burglary can require 1,000 process steps. Labour claim to support reducing bureaucracy but couldn't even answer whether the police should spend more time on paperwork or patrol when I questioned the then Shadow Home Secretary Ed Balls in January". "Only this Government is prepared to trust the police to get on with their jobs – rather than tying them up in paperwork and red tape. That's why I support the Home Secretary's decision to scrap all police targets and instead set the police just one goal: to cut crime".
UK resoundingly rejects AV
The proposal to move from a First Past the Post system to an Alternative Vote system for electing MP’s was resoundingly rejected by UK voters by 13,013,123 no votes to 6,152,607 yes votes. In Cannock Chase the majority was even clearer, with 19,151 (77.3%) people voting no and 5,621 (22.7%) voting yes. The Prime Minister said the British public have given the most clear and resounding answer to keep first past the post. Moving forward, David Cameron stressed that the Coalition will continue to provide "a good, strong, decisive government in the long term national interest of this country." And he added, "That's what we've been for this last year, and that's what we're going to be for the rest of this Parliament." Commenting, Aidan said: “The British people have given a clear message, and that is that they want to continue to use the First Past the Post system to elect MP’s. At no point was there a clear reason to change the system that has served us well for hundreds of years, and allows the people to kick out an unpopular government. This is excellent news for the future of our democracy. The time for silly distracting constitutional tinkering is over. It is now time to fully focus on getting our economy working again, reforming welfare and schools and delivering on what people care about in their daily lives."
Aidan in the media:
MP Aidan Burley urges football clubs to pay more police costs
BBC News website Wednesday 18 th May 2011 Premier League football clubs should pay more towards the cost of policing games, a Staffordshire MP has said. Conservative MP for Cannock Chase Aidan Burley said as police funding is cut, top-flight clubs should make bigger contributions. Clubs pay for policing inside and immediately outside grounds but forces cannot claim back what they spend on using extra officers for big matches. West Midlands Police spent £2.2m policing the four top clubs in 2008-9. Speaking at a debate at the House of Commons, Mr Burley revealed the figures which were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act. He said last season West Midlands Police recouped £1.4m of the £2.2m it spent - but up to £722,232 of the cost of policing games was met by the taxpayer. The force is looking to make a budget cut of £123m by 2014. Large policing operations are put in place for certain games, including derby matches between Birmingham City and Aston Villa. Last December, dozens were arrested and treated in hospital after a Carling Cup game between the two clubs. At the debate, Mr Burley said the heavy police presence at such games costs more than flagship events like Wimbledon or rugby internationals at Twickenham. He said: "The taxpayer is subsidising wealthy football clubs to the tune of millions of pounds a year and my simple question... is why? Police filming hooligans Trouble has flared at several derby games in the West Midlands "The idea the taxpayer pays for the adverse affect is what I'm challenging." But a spokesman for the Premier League said clubs should not be singled out. Dan Johnson said: "There are lots of events in big cities like Birmingham, be they at the NEC, be they party political conferences which come to Birmingham on numerous occasions and that's all paid for by the taxpayer. "But I come back to the fundamental point that football is an industry and individuals who attend football matches have already paid for their policing."
Aidan in the papers:
Thursday 19 th May 2011
Week in Westminster
Last week is best described as ‘a House of Commons week’. It started with me questioning the Policing Minister about the ‘democratic deficit’ in policing, which means that at present only 7% of the public know who to contact if they have a complaint. Do you know who it is? The answer is your Police Authority. But does anyone actually know how to contact them? Or who to contact? I have long time campaigned for greater transparency and accountability in police forces, and am strong supporter of directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners – coming next May. They will provide the public with a single accountable figure who local people will be able to contact about the performance of their force. Mid-week I attended the Westminster launch of Muscular Dystrophy Campaign’s new report ‘Invest to Save’ - which highlighted £31million of NHS waste each year on emergency hospital treatment for muscle-wasting patients. This could have been entirely avoided through proper access to specialist care and equipment. During the launch I was lucky enough to meet a wonderful local constituent called Elizabeth Orme, who is an inspiration to us all. She is coping magnificently with her illness but I was shocked to hear about difficulties faced by patients and families in accessing the specialist muscle-wasting disease care they so clearly require. I very much hope the Government takes note of this report and puts its very sensible recommendations into practice. Finally on Friday, before returning to the constituency, I accompanied Transport Secretary Philip Hammond to Birmingham Airport to officially open its new £13 million ‘one terminal’ building, which I must say is an impressive sight. Growing up in Birmingham, I have to say that walking though the terminal building brought back memories of my childhood and that feeling of excitement at waiting to go on holiday. Unfortunately this trip was purely business!
Aidan in the papers:
Thursday 12 th May 2011
Week in Westminster
Parliament retuned last week following the Easter break, although if you happened to turn over to BBC Parliament you may have noticed a few more empty green benches than usual. For many MPs, last week was instead spent campaigning in their constituencies for the local elections. On Election Day I was in the Chamber supporting the Transport Secretary Philip Hammond at Transport Questions in my role as PPS. The relative calm around Westminster also gave me the opportunity to catch up on constituency correspondence and prepare for the busy few weeks ahead. I was delighted last week to have the opportunity to proudly show my support to the Staffords regiment which is currently serving in Afghanistan. We must never forget the bravery and dedication of all our armed service personnel who risk their lives every day to keep us safe. It is indeed thanks to these brave men and women who are standing up for Western values that we are able to take part in free and fair elections. On the elections, I would like to offer my congratulations to all those Councillors of all political persuasions who were elected last week in Cannock Chase. However, I would also like to pay tribute to all those who lost their seats for the dedicated service they have given our District. A particular tribute must go to former Council leader Neil Stanley. We have occasionally differed, but I know he has always wanted to do the best for our area. As a former councillor myself, I know full well how vital the role of a councillor is to local communities and what an important part they play in our wider democracy.
5 ways to contact Aidan Burley MP:
By Phone: 01543 502 447 By email: email@example.com By post: Aidan Burley MP 6 High Green Court, Newhall Street Cannock, WS11 1GR In person: Click here for details of how to book an appointment at Aidan Burley MP’s regular help and advice surgeries.
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