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Wear it Pink Day

This Friday, it is wear it pink day for Breast Cancer Now, which will see thousands of people adding a splash of pink to their outfits to raise vital funds for the largest breast cancer charity.

Anyone can take part in wear it pink day, which brings together schools, workplaces and communities. All you need to do is wear something pink, or hold a pink event at home, work and school, and make a donation to Breast Cancer Now.

So please help us beat Breast Cancer and support Breast’s Cancer Now’s vital research by wearing it pink on Friday 20th October. Find out more here: wearitpink.org/17

Richard Burden MP 2

Calling for Council to rethink Children’s Centre proposals

Birmingham Northfield MP Richard Burden has called for Birmingham City Council to rethink proposals published today following its Early Years Health and Wellbeing Review. Under the review Birmingham City Council proposes to contract out children’s centre services to a consortium of the Community Healthcare NHS Trust, Barnardo’s Spurgeons children’s charity and St Paul’s Community Trust. The City Council say the plan will better integrate health visiting and children’s centre services, but it will see a number of children’s centres de-registered by the Council.

Mr Burden said today:

Government cuts are hitting children’s centres and other Sure Start initiatives all over the country. A third of all the UK’s sure start centres have been lost since 2010. Birmingham has lost £17m from its own early years budget. Nobody should be under any illusions that the responsibility of cuts to children’s centres in Birmingham lies anywhere other than, at root, with the Conservative Government. That is why, together with other Labour MPs and the City Council, I will continue to demand that ministers change course.

But that does not let the City Council off the hook with what they are proposing here. In my constituency and several others they still appear not to have addressed most of the consultation responses they received over the summer from parents and from people who actually deliver early years services.

Looking at the position in my constituency, I am pleased the Council have told me that they will retain Wychall and Frankley Plus Children’s Centres as hubs for early years services, and that they have modified an earlier proposal to close Merrishaw Children’s Centre. Elsewhere in the constituency, however, it is far from clear what kind of support will be there for families. In an area of high deprivation like Kings Norton’s three estates, that is a real concern.  In Weoley Castle, meanwhile, the City Council is planning to de-commission the well-established and highly regarded Children’s Centre only to then suggest running slimmed down services from two venues next door.

This remains a top-down reorganisation with far too many questions unanswered and precious little information about how its authors actually expect it to work.

Mr Burden has written to Council Leader Ian Ward urging that the City’s Cabinet withhold approval of the new arrangements unless and until the serious questions that have been raised are answered.

September Newsletter

Welcome to my latest Parliamentary newsletter. This covers local issues and developments as well as my actions in Parliament. You’ll find updates on the bin dispute, traveller sites and other issues. As ever, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me on these or any other issues.

Best wishes,

Richard

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Birmingham Northfield MP wins national road safety award

Richard Burden, MP for Birmingham Northfield, has today been awarded a parliamentarian road safety award by charity Brake and Direct Line.

The award recognises Richard’s long-standing involvement in transport and his commitment to road safety, particularly during his time as Shadow Transport Minister between 2013 and 2017. Richard has established himself as a strong supporter of the transport safety agenda across the years; promoting new vehicle technologies and calling for tougher law enforcement and sentencing.

As MP for a vehicle manufacturing heartland, Richard Burden has strong connections to vehicle development, and has consistently urged the industry to develop safe, sustainable and fair practices. Safe vehicles are a vital part of the safe systems agenda that works towards a future with zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads.

Jason Wakeford, Director of Campaigns for Brake, the road safety charity, said: “Richard is a worthy winner of this parliamentarian road safety award. Improved vehicle safety standards are vital to reducing needless deaths and serious injuries on the road. His tireless work to raise the safety bar of new vehicles is to be applauded, alongside his numerous achievements in his four years as Shadow Transport Minister.”

Accepting his award, Richard Burden MP said: “I want to thank Brake and Direct Line for selecting me for a parliamentary road safety award which I feel honoured to receive. Progress in vehicle design and the rapid technological advancement in intelligent, connected and automated control systems have real potential to help make our roads safer. Together with action to promote best practice in road design, road user education and more effective enforcement of regulations, they can and do save lives.

“Much has been achieved but every person killed or injured on our roads is one too many. That should remind us all of our continuing responsibility to identify what more we can do to make the vision of zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads a reality. I pay tribute to Brake and Direct Line for the work they do make our roads safer and to promote awareness amongst road users.”

My speech on European Union (Withdrawal) Bill

This week in Parliament I outlined why I could not support the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill at its Second reading in its current form.

Neither the people of Birmingham Northfield, nor anyone anywhere else in the country, were ever asked about, or voted for, the kind of ministerial power grab that the contents of the Bill represent. We must not allow Ministers to grab powers to avoid scrutiny by Parliament.

You can see watch my speech here: