Dods at Party Conference 2019

Labour | Conservatives | SNP

20 September 2019

Two companion animal vets have wowed judges and secured first place in their respective categories for the fourth annual BVA Veterinary Photographer of the Year competition. The 2019 contest saw over 400 applications from vets from across the profession with an interest in and passion for photography.

Two companion animal vets have wowed judges and secured first place in their respective categories for the fourth annual BVA Veterinary Photographer of the Year competition. The 2019 contest saw over 400 applications from vets from across the profession with an interest in and passion for photography. In the ‘All creatures great and small’ category, Jennifer Dykes, a small animal, Nottinghamshire based vet, took the top spot with her misty morning image of two sheep seemingly ‘in conversation’ at Castlerigg Stone Circle in the Lake District. She called it ‘Conversations at Dawn (Sheep at Dawn Lakes)’. On winning first place in her category, Jennifer Dykes said: “I am overjoyed that my image has been selected as the overall winner of the All Creatures Great and Small category, especially having seen the high calibre of photographs entered in previous years. I’d come across images of Castlerigg stone circle near Keswick before and so I dragged us all out of bed exceptionally early to...
20 September 2019

National learning disabilities charity, Hft and leading Connected Care & Health provider Tunstall Healthcare, have issued a joint submission to a House of Lords Science & Technology Committee inquiry into Ageing: Science, Technology and Healthy Living. 

The joint submission to the Committee, whose call for evidence closes today (20th September), highlighted how assistive technologies, such as telecare, have traditionally been geared towards older people. However, there are significant applications for working age adults with learning disabilities, which Hft and Tunstall believe are not currently being realised to its full potential. Earlier this year (July 2019), the two organisations published their report Improving Outcomes, Enhancing Care: Assistive technologies and the case for a Sector Deal for the learning disability sector. The report, officially launched at the House of Lords, highlights the challenges faced by a social care sector in financial crisis at a time when demand is growing.  Hft and Tunstall believe the successful negotiation of a learning disability Sector Deal would enable effective investment that could unlock the potential of assistive technologies. In turn, stimulating innovation and investment in future...
20 September 2019
Meg Hillier MP

Meg Hillier MP praises Speaker John Bercow for making Parliament "more welcoming and accessible", but writes as his successor, she would restore the broken trust and challenge the bullying behaviour in Parliament.

The public has been left bewildered and frustrated at goings-on in Westminster in recent months. A new Speaker has a big job to restore trust in Parliament. As I write, the relationship between Parliament and the Executive has been contested in the Supreme Court, a sign of the tension at the heart of our system. There has been a steady erosion of trust in Parliament over many years but I get the sense that the past three years have made things worse. And yet Parliament is our greatest institution, embodying our ancient liberties and modern democracy, and should be held in as much esteem as the NHS. One of the main priorities for the new Speaker should be to repair the reputational damage to Parliament, with the same boldness and scale as we are repairing the physical fabric of the buildings. As Speaker, I will accentuate the role of Parliament as the chief means of scrutinising the Government and holding the Queen’s Ministers to account for their decisions. We are judged on Twitter...
20 September 2019
Pride In London parade (July, 2019)

The Conservatives have made women and equalities a part-time role – we will not allow Boris Johnson to drive us back further, writes Dawn Butler MP

It is a sad fact that this country has gone backwards when it comes to women and equalities under successive Conservative governments. At Labour Conference we will send a clear message to Boris Johnson that we will not allow him to set us back even further. Women have shouldered the burden of 87% of the Conservative government’s cuts. And there are serious equality issues that need tackling urgently. Yet I have no faith things will get better under prime minister Boris Johnson, who is frequently accused of being a casual racist and sexist, especially with his reckless pursuit of a no deal Brexit which risks our hard-fought rights and protections. Women’s refuges are in crisis due to lack of funding; 54,000 women a year lose their jobs due to maternity discrimination; LGBT+ people are facing increasing levels of hate crime, and the representation of women as well as black, Asian and minority ethnic people at the highest levels is inadequate. Meanwhile the Gender Recognition Act still...
Dawn Butler MP
20 September 2019
A climate protester holds up a sign reading 'Change the politics, not the climate'

Millions of people have been shut out of prosperity and power for too long. A Labour government will open up politics and ensure accountability, writes John McDonnell MP

A lot is at stake for our country in the weeks to come. By the end of the year I hope that Jeremy Corbyn will be prime minister and that we will have begun the long, hard work of turning around the social and environmental decline which a decade of Conservative austerity has brought about. Not because I want to see the clock turned back to 2010 – and those who think it can be turned back to 2005 are no less mistaken – but because it’s time politics actually caught up with the reality of the climate emergency which Parliament declared in May but which the Government seems not to have noticed. Almost everyone now agrees about the urgency of changing the way we treat our planet, but HM Treasury has not yet been deployed to the extent required to finance the just transition needed to a sustainable economy. That, above all, is the priority which I hope to bring there in the coming months. An ambitious programme of government investment, our National Transformation Fund, will mobilise £...
John McDonnell MP
20 September 2019
Boris Johnson and Jean-Claude Juncker

Jean-Claude Juncker has offered Boris Johnson a Brexit lifeline by saying the "basis of a deal" is in place.

The European Commission president spoke out after the Government produced proposals on how the Irish backstop could be replaced. Speaking to Sky News, Mr Juncker - who held talks with the Prime Minister earlier this week - said he did not have an "erotic relationship" with the backstop, which is aimed at guaranteeing no return to a hard border on the island of Ireland. Mr Juncker said: “I had a meeting with Boris Johnson that was rather positive. I think we can have a deal. “I am doing everything to have a deal because I don’t like the idea of a no-deal because I think this would have catastrophic consequences for at least one year. "If the objectives are met - all of them - then we don't need the backstop." On the UK government's proposals for replacing the backstop, Mr Juncker said: “It is the basis of a deal. It is the starting and the arrival point." EC President @JunckerEU said he thinks a...
20 September 2019
Meg Hillier MP

Meg Hillier MP praises Speaker John Bercow for making Parliament "more welcoming and accessible", but writes as his successor, she would restore the broken trust and challenge the bullying behaviour in Parliament.

The public has been left bewildered and frustrated at goings-on in Westminster in recent months. A new Speaker has a big job to restore trust in Parliament. As I write, the relationship between Parliament and the Executive has been contested in the Supreme Court, a sign of the tension at the heart of our system. There has been a steady erosion of trust in Parliament over many years but I get the sense that the past three years have made things worse. And yet Parliament is our greatest institution, embodying our ancient liberties and modern democracy, and should be held in as much esteem as the NHS. One of the main priorities for the new Speaker should be to repair the reputational damage to Parliament, with the same boldness and scale as we are repairing the physical fabric of the buildings. As Speaker, I will accentuate the role of Parliament as the chief means of scrutinising the Government and holding the Queen’s Ministers to account for their decisions. We are judged on Twitter...
20 September 2019
Marsha de Cordova

This Parliament has been more stressful than most for MPs – add in ongoing battles with IPSA and being forced to fire staff, and you can see why Marsha de Cordova is having sleepless nights. The life-long disability campaigner talks to Anahita Hossein-Pour about why she’ll never stop demanding inclusivity

Labour’s shadow disabilities minister is no stranger to the barriers faced in her brief. Marsha de Cordova has fought her own battles through school, college, university and work; this year has seen her embroiled in a struggle in Parliament that many of her colleagues will not relate to. Sitting down with The House magazine, the Bristol-raised campaigner describes, as if for the umpteenth time, that she was born with a severe visual impairment called nystagmus, which is an involuntary movement of the eye. “I actually call it my wobble, because they just bounce around the place all the time,” she says, light heartedly. We’re joined in the room by de Cordova’s sighted assistant, who has acted as “her eyes” since the former Lambeth councillor ousted the Tories in Battersea in the 2017 election. That means helping de Cordova get around the Parliamentary estate, her constituency, to events and meetings. But this is only one of many adjustments needed to do her job. From brightening up...
Anahita Hossein-Pour
20 September 2019
Houses of Parliament

A government minister has refused to rule out the possibility of Boris Johnson suspending Parliament again if he loses a landmark court case.

Victoria Atkins repeatedly said she would not be drawn on how the Government will respond if the Supreme Court judgement goes against it. Eleven of the UK's most senior judges will give their ruling next week following a three-day legal battle in which the Prime Minister was accused of acting unlawfully by proroguing Parliament. The Government has insisted it was a routine move ahead of a Queen's Speech on 14 October, but critics claimed it was aimed at preventing MPs from frustrating Brexit ahead of the 31 Octover deadline. On Question Time on Thursday night, Ms Atkins, who is women's minister, was asked to respond to reports that the Government is considering a second prorogation if it loses the court case. She said: "Please, I’m going to play with a very, very straight bat on this one and just say I can’t comment further until the judgement." When asked by presenter Fiona Bruce whether she could rule it out, Ms Atkins replied: "I appreciate that, taking this step by step, these are...
20 September 2019
Aliana Alexis of Haiti stands on what is left of her home after destruction from Hurricane Dorian (Sep 2019)

Labour will secure the future of our planet while safeguarding jobs and livelihoods, writes Mary Creagh MP

Fires in the Arctic. Snow in the Sahara. Devastating storms from Mozambique to the Caribbean. This is what climate breakdown looks like. The 10 hottest years in the UK have all occurred since 2002. July was the hottest month ever recorded on Earth yet was followed by flood-inducing downpours in the UK. More than a million species are at risk of extinction and we are losing wildlife at a rate not seen since the time of dinosaurs. The causes are well known. Runaway greenhouse gas emissions from our factories, farms, homes and cars have pushed the planet to the brink, and we have just 11 years, scientists warn, to change course. Earth Overshoot Day, the point at which humanity has exhausted nature’s budget for the year, happened on 29 July this year. We are well into our ecological overdraft just three-quarters of the way through the year. The good news is that people are beginning to rise to this challenge. Spearheaded by inspiring activists like Greta Thunberg, a wave of protest...
Mary Creagh MP