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It's a busy schedule working as the MP for Leicester South. We try to make sure we keep everyone up-to-date with important issues, topics that affect constituents. We do this with regular updates on the website, including this page, where we highlight news items.
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FEBRUARY 2016

Jon Ashworth MP on a Patch Walk to tackle anti-social behaviour

Friday February 26 2016

Jon was on a Patch Walk with Police Officers, City Wardens and local Councillors in the Evington Road area.

Jon received a petition signed by nearly 200 residents of Glossop Street, Draper Street, Lyme Road and Linton Street, calling for anti-social behaviour in the area to be resolved.

Jon said:  “From the petition, I am aware that residents are extremely concerned about littering, fly tipping, vandalism, and dangerous driving. These issues need to be looked into and sorted out. I have therefore arranged for a Patch Walk with various agencies.’’

In the petition residents were particularly concerned with littering on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, especially in the evenings, regular fly tipping on the pavements and roads, vandalism from children on their bikes, and dangerous driving. Some residents would also like to see a Parking Permit Zone in the area.

Councillor Thalukdar commented: “Councillors Chaplin, Mater and I were pleased to meet many people today and hear their concerns. But this will not just be a listening exercise – we will be taking appropriate action following the Patch Walk with Jon.”

 
Jon with local Councillors, the police and residents discussing their concerns
Photo above and top right; Jon with local Councillors, the police and residents discussing their concerns, photo bottom right; Jon with (from row left to right) Sergeant Nagdi, Councillors Chaplin and Master
Click any photo for enlargement

Councillor Thalukdar continued: “Evington Road is a vibrant and multicultural area of the City, but we all need to take pride in the area and make it a welcoming and safe area for residents and visitors.”

 
Jon with local Councillors, the police and residents discussing their concerns
Jon with (from row left to right) Sergeant Nagdi, Councillors Chaplin and Master

Jon Ashworth MP calls a meeting over the closure of Queens Road Medical Centre

Tuesday February 23 2016

In light of the on-going campaign following the announcement that Queens Road Medical Centre will close at the end of March, Jon has called a meeting of interested parties to seek a way forward.

The meeting to be held on Friday 26 February will be attended by those from the local community leading the campaign and representatives of the Clinical Commissioning Group.

Jon stated: “It is clear from the number of people who have contacted me that the closure of Dr Lenten’s Practice is of great concern to the local community.  The loss of another well respected and hard-working GP within my Constituency must be looked at by the Clinical Commissioning Group.”

 

“I have already written to the Secretary of State for Health calling on him to look again at the national funding formula for GP practices, known as the PMS Review, which is clearly adversely affecting the financial stability of single hander practitioners.”

“But it is important that people know why the CCG decided to disperse Dr Lenten’s patient list and not to seek alternative solutions, and to know what the CCG now plans to do for GP provision in the area. These questions, and others, will be answered at the meeting this Friday.”

“I also asked Dr Lenten to attend this meeting but I understand that as he has made his decision to close the practice, he wants to focus on his patients and staff until the end of March.”

 
jon ashworth mp

A damning report on Leicester Prison, says Jon Ashworth, Labour MP
for Leicester South

Thursday February 18 2016

Jonathan Ashworth, commenting on the release of HM Inspectorate Report on Leicester Prison, said: “The findings in yesterday’s report on Leicester Prison are damning – and further evidence of the decline of the justice system under this Tory government.

Since the last inspection from 2013, the HM Inspectorate Report found that conditions in Leicester Prison had deteriorated, with the segregation unit being described as decrepit, terrible, and appalling.

The Report also found that the Prison is hugely overcrowded with 50 per cent more prisoners than it should hold, and that those who could not speak English were alone and confused.

 

Jon said: “It is totally unacceptable that, despite Cameron's speech on prison reform a few weeks ago, Leicester Prison is now dangerously overcrowded and some parts even unfit for habitation.

“This situation is a direct result of the failing policies of this government and chronic overcrowding in Britain’s prisons. I will be writing to the Prisons Minister and demanding urgent action be taken to find a root and branch solution to this situation.”

 

 
Jon speaking in parliament
Click photo for enlargement
 

Jon Ashworth, Labour MP for Leicester South, demands action from the Government

Wednesday February 10 2016

Following the closure of The Maples Surgery last month, and the announcement that Queens Road Medical Centre will close at the end of March, Jon has written to the Secretary of State for Health.

Jon stated: “I am clearly not happy that Leicester is going to lose another hard working GP. Dr Lenten’s practice is the second practice to close in a matter of months in my Constituency, with a further practice closing its sub surgery at Springfield Road in April.”

“I have asked the Secretary of State for Health as a matter of urgency to look again at the national funding formula for GP practices, known as the PMS Review. It is clear that this Review is particularly adversely affecting the financial stability of single hander practitioners.”


“The changing face of the NHS, with hospitals pushing more work out to GPs, is also making it more difficult for single handed GPs to be operationally viable as well as financially viable.”

 

Jon’s letter to Jeremy Hunt follows correspondence forwarded earlier in the week requesting that the Secretary of State looks at increasing the notice period that GPs must give on retirement or resignation.

Jon commented: “The current three month notice period is causing my constituents concern as there is simply not enough time for them to re-register with another practice. Last week the Leicester City Health and Wellbeing Board agreed to seek a local voluntary agreement with GPs in Leicester to introduce a six month notice period. But this must be compulsory, not optional, if patients are not to be left stranded when their GP practice closes.”

There is a public meeting
Thursday 11 February
which starts at 6pm
at The Friends’ Meeting House

 

 
jon ashworth mp
Jon speaking in Parliament
 

Jon Ashworth MP sees the impact of Universal Credit

Tuesday February 9 2016

On a visit to Open Hands Food Bank on Friday 5 February, Jon was told of the massive increase in demand for the food bank since Universal Credit was introduced in Leicester on Monday 25 January.

The foodbank normally helps around 17 to 20 people a week, but the week after Universal Credit was introduced the number of people seeking help had nearly doubled to 39.

Jon said: “We've had Universal Credit in Leicester for just 10 days and already this foodbank in Highfields is seeing a huge increase in demand. This demand may well increase further as people claiming Universal Credit for the first time have to wait five to six weeks before receiving their first payment.”

Universal Credit was rolled out in Leicester on 25 January for single people, without children, who would normally be claiming Job Seekers Allowance.

Jon commented: “As well as the adverse effect Universal Credit is already having on single people, I am particularly concerned about how families will cope when they have to claim Universal Credit.”

 

“Even the Institute of Fiscal Studies concluded that reductions in work allowances means that Universal Credit will reduce the level of support for working households, despite the government always claiming that working households would be better off under Universal Credit.”

Today the Institute for Fiscal Studies published its ‘Green Budget 2016’, in which it concludes that that the way in which the planned levels of work allowances, (namely the amount people can earn before benefit entitlements start to be reduced), have been repeatedly cut does not give the impression that this has been the result of a carefully thought through plan for the shape of the future benefit system. Rather, it appears as though cutting work allowances has been seen as a convenient way of reducing planned social security spending.

 
Jon and Sue Smout, Senior manager at Open Hands, at the Foodbank
Photo; Jon and Sue Smout, Senior manager at Open Hands, at the Foodbank
Click photo for enlargement
 
 
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