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Liz McInnes, Member of Parliament for Heywood and Middleton and Shadow Foreign Minister, has issued the following statement in response to yesterday’s terror attack in London.

 

‘Yesterday’s attack in Westminster was cowardly and vicious. My thoughts are with the families and friends of those innocent people who were killed and injured. The terrorist, whatever his precise motives prove to be, is the worst of humanity, cruel and indiscriminate. In contrast, the response to his actions by others demonstrated the very best of humanity.

PC Keith Palmer is a hero who will be remembered for giving his life so that others may live. He was a husband and a father and my heart goes out to his family. My thoughts and sincere thanks are today also with his colleagues who, as always, are bravely and professionally carrying out their duties, dedicated to protecting others.

My fellow MP Tobias Ellwood did all he could to help save PC Palmer’s life and is also, quite rightly, being hailed as a hero.

Many others acted selflessly and with incredible bravery to help the victims on Westminster Bridge and outside parliament in the moments after the attack and they each represent the best of us.

When horrific events like this occur, we must strive to remember these acts of humanity which outnumber and will outlast in every way the actions of violent cowards. We must remember those like PC Keith Palmer who when confronted with danger resist the natural urge for personal safety and instead run towards it in order to keep others from harm.

There will be those who will seek to capitalise on yesterday’s events and to sow division in our country, but that would be exactly what those who use terror as a tool would want us to do. I believe that our democracy and our way of life is stronger than the power of any terrorist. The terrorists will only succeed if we ourselves retreat into hatred and division. We must remember and uphold the very values the terrorists would seek to destroy – tolerance, compassion, freedom and democracy.

At times of crisis such as this it is more important than ever that we unite as one to remember those values and the very best of humanity, as so clearly demonstrated by PC Palmer and others.’

Statement regarding the London terror attack

Liz McInnes, Member of Parliament for Heywood and Middleton and Shadow Foreign Minister, has issued the following statement in response to yesterday’s terror attack in London.  

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This week I have formally submitted my response to the consultation regarding proposed changes to the school funding formula.

On behalf of the many headteachers who have contacted me and who are deeply worried about the impact of the proposals, I made the following submission:

'Schools in Greater Manchester are set to lose almost £175 million in real terms by 2019 if the proposed changes to the funding formula go ahead. 86 headteachers from across Great Manchester have written a joint letter to the Prime Minister to highlight their serious concerns about the impact of the proposals on teaching and learning in their schools and I am sure that many more will have submitted individual responses to this consultation. 

In recent weeks I have been contacted by headteachers in my constituency who are desperately worried about the impact of these huge cuts.

Indicative modelling prepared by Rochdale Council and based on current pupil data shows that Primary and Secondary schools in our borough face a loss of £1.8 million, however this is exacerbated by the already rising cost pressures schools are facing. Over the past few years the funding for schools collectively has remained flat and schools have been required to absorb these rising costs. National teaching unions have estimated that these pressures could mean the actual cost to Rochdale schools of the new funding proposals is around £16 million.

In the words of one Primary school headteacher who contacted me:

‘Schools like mine will be forced into deficits or to make devastating cuts to the quality of our provision and as a result children will fail in learning and also in their development, as well as devastating ‘early help’. There are no more efficiencies that we can find, having done all that already, so I know that the next round of cuts will affect teaching and learning. As this is our core purpose I am extremely concerned. The changes to the Early Years funding formula also affects us so we are significantly damaged by this proposal.’

I urge the government to think again about the proposals and to listen to the headteachers and governors who know best how their schools and their pupils will be affected and who have serious, legitimate concerns about the impact of these changes.'

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Response to school funding consultation

This week I have formally submitted my response to the consultation regarding proposed changes to the school funding formula.

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This budget does not address the problems created by seven years of Tory failure. There were no proposals in the budget to deal with the living standards crisis and it doesn’t do anything to build a fair economy for all.

Among the proposals the government announced, many hardworking people in Heywood and Middleton will be especially hit by the Tories' plan to increase Class 4 National Insurance for the self-employed, at a time when many families are already only just about managing. The fact that the Prime Minister has now been forced to announce that the increase will be pushed back to the autumn shows the government are in complete disarray and this will do nothing to help give certainty and security to working people.

Any rise in the main rate of Class 4 NICs will be a break of the Tories' 2015 manifesto promise not to raise National Insurance, and at the same time the Tories are going ahead with tax giveaways to the super rich and private corporations. Our plumbers, electricians, childminders and bricklayers should not be made to bear the cost of Tory failure.

Our health and social care services continue to face a serious crisis. The £2billion announced for social care may appear like a step in the right direction but the system needs it now, not spread over three years as the government intends, and it is well short of the £4.6billion shortfall in social care funding in the last parliament.

As we mark International Women's Day this week, it is a sad fact that it is women who are bearing the brunt of Tory austerity: since 2010, 86 per cent of the Tories’ net savings to the Treasury through tax and benefit measures will have come from women. Nothing in this budget will reverse that trend, and in yet another example of women being unfairly hit by this government the Chancellor has once again failed to address the hardship caused to millions of women by poorly handled changes to the state pension age. 

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I was proud to join campaigners from the Waspi (Women Against State Pension Inequality campaign) movement outside parliament after the budget announcement (pictured), and I know they will continue to fight to make the government listen. The Waspi campaigners and the millions of women affected will continue to have my full support.

This government have presided over the slowest economic recovery since the 1920s and it is working people who are suffering because of the Tories’ economic failure, with a squeeze to their living standards and the undermining of the public services they rely on. Sadly, this budget does nothing to address these issues and will in fact make life even more difficult for many working people in Heywood and Middleton.

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Working people forced to pay the price of Tory failure

This budget does not address the problems created by seven years of Tory failure. There were no proposals in the budget to deal with the living standards crisis and it doesn’t do anything to build a...

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