My Newsletter 23/02/18

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Welcome to the latest issue of my weekly newsletter.

It was a bit shorter week in Parliament as Monday was the final day of recess. I used this time to meet with several people and organisations in the constituency as well as attending Ken Bullivant’s funeral.

There are several new additions to my What’s On section so make sure you check those out.

As I’ve said before, I will strive to send you a newsletter like this each Friday to keep you updated on the work I’m doing in Parliament as well as in our community, and to inform you of any interesting events taking place in our area. To help me with the latter, if you are running or know of anything that you think may be of interest to others, feel free to drop me an email at alex.norris.mp@parliament.uk and I will include it in future issues. Please also forward it onto anyone you think may be interested.

Groundwork

On Monday, I met with representatives from Groundwork Greater Nottingham (Groundwork GN). They are a charity which has been delivering Environmental, Community Development, Children and Young People Support and Employability programmes across D2N2 (Derby/Derbyshire, Nottingham/Nottinghamshire) since its formation in 1990.

Over the past 4 years Groundwork GN has been the D2N2 area lead delivery partner of a national Big Lottery Funded employability programme called Talent Match. This is a programme particularly focussed on tackling long-term youth unemployment and supports 18 – 24 year olds with multiple and complex barriers to gain employment. During this time they have engaged with around 1000 local young people, have helped around 370 clients into employment and countless more into entry level or further education.

Through their work with the Big Lottery Fund on Talent Match and with Youth Employment UK  (which is a non-profit organisation and the leading campaign and membership organisation dedicated to tackling youth unemployment in the UK) Groundwork GN are pleased to announce the launch of the Talent Match Mark. This is a new quality standard and kite mark which assesses and recognises employers’ Youth Friendliness. Employers can gain four levels of accreditation to the mark according to them providing young people with opportunities to Explore, Experience and gain Employment and them embedding five key principles (developed in consultation with Goldsmith University London) which ensure that:

  • Young people are more prepared for the world of work
  • Employers are better equipped to support young people
  • Government policy is geared towards the real needs of young people

In conjunction with the mark, Groundwork GN are delighted to be spearheading an ambitious and exciting campaign to get Nottinghamshire recognised as Youth Employment UK – Youth Friendly Place 2018. In order to achieve this status, Groundwork GN need the participation of as many local employers as possible to achieve the challenging targets which have been impartially set by Youth Employment UK.

This campaign will have huge benefits to our area including attracting new business, helping young people to make a successful transition from education into employment, promoting social mobility, helping employers to diversify their workforce, increasing motivation in their existing staff and for the region to retain and maximise the potential of its future talent pool, and supporting employers in reaching a wider group of young people.

If you are a local employer interested in finding out more about the mark and getting involved in the campaign, please visit www.groundwork.org.uk/sites/nottingham, www.youthemployment.org.uk email Matt Hanrahan – Employer Engagement Officer at Groundwork GN at matt.hanrahan@groundworknottingham.org.uk or call 07985555151.

Money Laundering

On Tuesday, I gave a speech in the Commons floor regarding a Lords anti-money-laundering bill. In it, I called on the government to take the necessary steps to reduce money laundering in the UK and across the globe.

Recently, it was revealed that $740m from a Russian crime ring was laundered through the UK. This is not the first time it is happened, and I do not believe it will be the last unless we do something about it. The current incentive scheme is too relaxed on banks, as such, they have more of a reason to turn a blind eye and pay measly fines than doing the serious financial scrutiny we want them to.

We must get more assurances from the Government that stronger mechanisms will be put in place to keep banks accountable and stamp money laundering out. Furthermore, we must instate the public register that the Government has been promising for years. If we can stop money laundering through our banks and in housing purchases, then we can keep our communities safer and maybe ease the housing crisis.

I am happy to announce that I will be on the Committee for this Bill, and I will be doing my best to ensure that the appropriate safeguards are put in place to stop money laundering in its tracks.

APPGs on Democratic Participation and Domestic Abuse

I was represented at two All-Party Parliamentary Groups, one dedicated to improving democratic participation in our country and the other dedicated to improving our responses to domestic violence for women and girls.

Some of you may recall that improving our democracy has been one of my key issues since I was elected. Last year, I held a debate on the probable merits of automatic voter registration in Nottingham North—in reality, the benefits of automatic voter registration are far reaching and key to improving representation throughout the UK. At Tuesday’s meeting, there was news of about a collaboration between the Electoral Commission and Experian, where data is corroborated to create a picture of who is not registered and who is being underrepresented. This is a step in the right direction that ensures the accuracy of our registers. I look forward to any new information that comes out and will provide any updates here.

The APPG on Domestic Abuse was a packed house, with many experts speaking on the Domestic Violence and Abuse Bill that the Government has promised to introduce. This is an issue that I am passionate about; while on the City Council, I was responsible for the commissioning of Nottingham’s excellent domestic violence services.

As a part of the new legislation we are hoping to establish a new Commissioner for Violence against Women and Girls. This role would be a huge step towards ending the post code lottery that limits access to domestic violence services.

Ideas to Change Britain

I was pleased to be featured in the Co-operative party member’s magazine edition about the new ideas for changing Britain. You can read my contribution below.

co-op article

Brexit Papers

I went to see the Brexit impact assessment papers. These are an illustration of the possible outcomes of Brexit, as written up by the Civil Service. The Government is at pains to say that they don’t endorse these scenarios. This is important because each one of them says that all regions of the country and all sectors of the economy will suffer under each of the different scenarios. This isn’t good enough. People did not vote to be worse off. It’s incumbent now on the Government to show how they will make sure this is not the case.

In Parliament

It was the first week back since the recess; as such, it has been a busy week getting back into the swing of things in Parliament.

I’ve mentioned about the speech that I gave and the APPG meetings I attended, so here are some other things I got up to while back in Westminster:

  • I spoke with Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England, regarding oral health.
  • I was briefed by Sam Ellis regarding the upcoming Association of Personal Injury Lawyers event at the end of the month.
  • I discussed an Early Day Motion on the prison situation in Nottingham with Jackie Marshall, the Prison Officers’ Association NEC representative on Wednesday.
  • I also met with Paul Gerrard regarding Co-op’s new report on modern slavery.
  • Wednesday was a Co-op Party meeting where we discussed questions for the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. The questions ranged from eradicating modern slavery to tenant rights.
  • The British Conference of Undergraduate Research held research presentations in Parliament on Tuesday. I’m happy to say that students from Nottingham Trent University were there, making our community proud! You can read more about BCUR here.
  • I also intervened during a debate about East Midlands Ambulance Service. You can see my contribution and the whole debate here.

In Nottingham

Here’s some of what I’ve been discussing:

  • I recorded an interview with the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation to talk about how Nottingham has been leading the way in improving lung cancer survival rates.
  • I met with Trevor Coker about the great work We Love Bulwell is doing to promote strong community spirit in Bulwell.
  • I had a discussion with Dianne Mortell, a pastor at The Well, regarding legislation affecting immigrants.
  • On an academic note, I spoke with Chris Bradford—the principal of Bilborough Sixth Form College in Nottingham—on Thursday.
  • On Friday, I have my surgery with issues ranging from immigration to healthcare access.

 

And tomorrow I’ll be out knocking doors – say hello if I bump into you!

What’s On

I want these emails to be as interesting as possible. That means there’ll be some politics – it’s important that I am held accountable. But I also want to offer information about what’s on locally. So, if you have an event you’d like me to advertise, let me know.

Women’s equality discussion
A panel of high-profile women in Nottingham will discuss their insights and experience in regard to the ongoing campaign for women’s rights and gender equality. This event is open to the public (both women and men) and it takes place at the Council House on the Old Market Square on 7th March at 6pm. Tickets are free but must be ordered through Eventbrite. Get your tickets here.

Erasmus+ funding
Work for a school in Nottingham North? Apply for some of the €170m Erasmus+ funding available this year for schools to exchange staff and pupils. The next deadline for school exchange partnerships is 21 March. Apply now here.

Funding is also available for youth organisations in Nottingham North. Next deadline for youth funding is 26 April. More information here.

Bilborough Arts Festival (BArts)
Apply now! BArts is gearing up for a second year in venues across Bilborough – involving community groups, schools and individual artists organising creative opportunities and showcasing their work. BArts will take place from Saturday 30 June – Fri 6th July 2018 and the organisers are looking for local artists and volunteers to apply to take part in exhibitions, performances or to run workshops.  The deadline for online applications is 26th March 2018 – find out more here.

Bulwell Arts Festival Applications Open! Deadline 31st March 2018
Applications are open to artists, workshop leaders, performers and volunteers! Taking place from Sat 7th – Sat 14th July 2018, this eight-day festival celebrates the creativity of the people, history and landscape of Bulwell.  You can apply to take part via their online application form here.

Joining Lines – Community Crochet Project for Bulwell Riverside
Local Designer and Maker April Towriess has launched an appeal to crocheters from far and wide to send her white crocheted doilies! These will form part of an installation and exhibition at Bulwell Riverside in the this summer. You can follow April’s Unity Doily pattern, which can be found here or use one of your own. Use any white yarn or thread weight you like. When submitting your doily or doilies, let April know your name, age, gender and briefly describe who taught you to crochet and why you do it now.  Each doily and set of comments will be photographed and added to a blurb book which will be available to purchase. All proceeds will be donated to charity.  The closing date for submissions is Saturday 26th April 2018.

Send your doilies to:
Chris Tilley Community Champion, C/O April Towriess Crochet
Joining Lines Project, Bulwell Tesco Extra Community Room, Jennison Street, Nottingham, NG6 8EQ

Three Doors Down
Over the next 6 months, Andy Barrett from Excavate Theatre Company is working with local people who live in and around Minver Crescent in Aspley, to uncover the stories of life in the area over the last 80 years. A series of events are being planned from theatre in living rooms and front gardens, to storytelling, filmmaking and photography to engage as many residents as possible. Contact Cathy Mahmood on 07808 165209 cathy.mahmood@rebalancingouterestates.com or Andy Barrett andy@excavate.org.uk for further information.    Dates for your diary include:

  • Tues 27 Feb, 12.30 at ACTC, Community Planning meeting
  • Sat 10 March, 11am-3pm, Project Launch Day, ACTC
  • Sat 21 April, 11am – 3pm, Film making Day
  • Sat 26 May, 6 – 8pm, The Minver Crescent Nosh Up.

Poems in the Pub
Open Mic Night, Free Admission, Local Talent, Full Bar
The William Peverel, Bulwell
Once a month, 7pm for 7:30pm start, next on March 1st

Nottingham North Jobs Fair
Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation and Nottingham City Council join forces with local employment and training specialists and employers to hold the first large jobs and apprenticeship fair of the year. It will take place at the Bulwell Riverside Sports Hall on 9th March from 9:30am to 2:30pm.

Bulwell Forest Garden Lunch Club
You can go and harvest, prepare and cook a delicious veggie meal, to share and eat together. The first lunch is held on Friday 2nd March from 10.30am to 1.30pm at Bulwell Forest Garden, Austin Street, Bulwell, NG6 9JU.

Drop In Café
All welcome for a free cuppa and biscuit, and a place to sit and have a chat
Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Parish Community Centre, Brooklyn Rd, Bulwell NG6 9ES
Thursdays, 9:30am–12:30pm

St Philip’s/St Matthew’s Knit & Natter groups
St Philip’s Church, Knights Close, Top Valley
1st and 3rd Wednesdays every month, 10am-12pm
Bestwood Community Centre, Gainsford Crescent, Bestwood Estate
2nd Monday every month, 10am-12pm

Messy Church Bestwood/Bulwell Forest
Bestwood Community Centre, Gainsford Crescent, Bestwood Estate
Various Tuesdays, 4:30-6pm
Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Rd, Bestwood Park
Various Thursdays, 4:30-6pm
Church on Rise Park, Revelstoke Way, Rise Park
Various Thursdays, 5-6:30pm

Messy Church
Drinks, crafts, activities, bible stories and a meal for all ages and interests
Bulwell United Reformed Church, Broomhill Road/Brooklyn Road, Bulwell
Usually first Saturday of every month, 10:30am-12:30pm

Bestwood Park Church’s Bestop Kitchen
Social Eating Event, Donations Welcome

Bestwood Park Church, Beckhampton Road, NG5 5NG
Every Tuesday, 12-2pm

Free Community Cinema
Free screenings of films, everyone welcome!
St John’s Church, Key’s Close, Bulwell
2nd Friday every month, 7pm

Bulwell Connectors
Free monthly group developing opportunities for more art in public places in Bulwell. With trips to galleries and hands-on creative workshops, this group is for local people who want to be arts champions for Bulwell. Facilitated by Nottingham Contemporary associate artist Gillian Brent
Bulwell Riverside, Community Room 2
2nd Tuesday every month, 6-8pm
For further info: www.creativenottinghamnorth.com, @CreativeNNorth, cathy.mahmood@rebalancingouterestates.com

Crafty Ladies
Bring along a project, or learn to do something new.
St Martins Church, St Martin’s Rd, Off Strelley Rd, Bilborough, NG8 3BH
Every Wednesday, 11am – 2pm
50p, for further info: www.stmartinsbilborough.org.uk, info@stmartinsbilborough.uk

Crochet Clinic
Community Room at Tesco Bulwell, Jennison St, NG6 8EQ (upstairs near the cafe)
First Wednesday of every month, 6:30pm–8:30pm
£5 (covers refreshments and materials)
For further info: www.apriltowriess.co.uk, hello@apriltowriess.co.uk

Sound as a Pound have asked me to advertise their 2-day finance ‘Money Talks’ courses in Nottingham. Transport and lunch are both provided, attendees will receive a £10 gift voucher for each day and there are plenty of other freebies on offer, as well as some sound money-saving advice! For further information you can call 0115 844 3745, email soundasapound@ncha.org.uk or visit their website at www.soundasapound.org.

 

If you would like your events advertised here, or further information on those advertised, please email me at alex.norris.mp@parliament.uk.

That’s all for now! Details of how to get in touch or to have a look at the things I’m doing are below…

All the best,

Alex

 

 

How to contact me

If you would like to contact me, please email alex.norris.mp@parliament.uk or give my Nottingham North constituency office a ring on 0115 975 2377.

If you are a constituent from Nottingham North e-mailing me regarding a casework issue you are my priority, so please ensure your message includes:

your full name

your full postal address, including postcode

a contact telephone number and

any helpful details relevant to your case such as date of birth, reference numbers etc.

Strict parliamentary protocol means I can only deal with issues on behalf of my own constituents. If you aren’t sure whether you live in Nottingham North, you can check who your local MP is by entering your postcode online here: findyourmp.parliament.uk.

You may also wish to write to me with your concerns. If so please send your correspondence to Alex Norris MP, House of Commons, London, SW1A OAA. All constituents who take the time and trouble to write a personal letter will receive a reply as a matter of priority.

 

Other useful links

Alex’s Website: click here.

Alex’s Twitter: click here.

Nottingham City Council: click here.

Find your MP: click here.

Register to vote: click here.

School term dates in Nottingham: click here.

LABOUR PARTY

If you’d like to learn more about the Labour party their website is here.

To join the Labour Party click here.

LOCAL NEWS

Nottingham BBC news: click here.

East Midlands BBC news: click here.

Nottingham Post: click here.

Notts TV: click here.

LOCAL INFORMATION

Benefits Information: Here’s an excellent site that allows you to find out exactly what benefits you are eligible to claim: EntitledTo

Housing: please contact your City Council

Problems with benefits or the Child Support Agency? The Citizens Advice Bureau and the Nottingham Welfare Rights Service can give advice. Remember to have your National Insurance number handy if you make an inquiry.

Local schools / education matters: please contact your City Council.

Employment rights: see Citizens Advice Bureau or the Trades Union Congress for info.

Social services, environmental health, noise nuisance, parking, and Council Tax should all be addressed to the City Council.

Another useful website on public services is Direct.gov.

NATIONAL LINKS

For the main Parliamentary website click here and to explore the Parliamentary education site click here.

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