Alan Whitehead MP

Member of Parliament for Southampton Test

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I’ve spoken to many people in Southampton who have told me that they are struggling to cope with the hated bedroom tax, introduced by the Tories and Liberal Democrats in Westminster. In the South alone over 33,000 people have been affected.

This is a policy that unfairly hits hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people, such as those with disabilities or who are carers, and it threatens to cost more than it saves which is why the next Labour government will abolish it.

The Liberal Democrats have repeatedly backed the Tories to keep the Bedroom Tax in place and have refused to join previous Labour attempts to scrap the policy. Yet today the Liberal Democrats joined me and other Labour MPs by voting against their own policy in Parliament.

Unfortunately this vote will not abolish the bedroom tax, as Labour will do if elected next year, but it is a step in the right direction and a glimmer of hope for many.

The Labour Party has been clear and consistent in its opposition to the Bedroom Tax. It is an unfair and unworkable policy that causes misery to hundreds of thousands of people by forcing them out of their homes, most of whom have nowhere else to move to.

I’m glad the Liberal Democrats voted with us today but sadly it’s come too late for the thousands of people who've been forced into debt as a result of the Bedroom Tax and thousands more who have been forced to rely on food banks to survive. The truth is you can’t trust a word that Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats say.

The only sure way to get the Bedroom Tax repealed will be to elect a Labour government next year.

 

Misery of the Coalition's Bedroom Tax continues despite vote in Parliament

I’ve spoken to many people in Southampton who have told me that they are struggling to cope with the hated bedroom tax, introduced by the Tories and Liberal Democrats in...

calendar.jpgFind out what Alan is up to this week.

Monday 8th - Sunday 14th September 2014

  • Monday – Speaking to Norstec Academy students regarding working in the renewable energy sector.  Delegated legislation committee on road safety.  Institute for Public Policy Research event entitled ‘A new approach to energy markets: how disruptive technology changes everything’.
  • Tuesday – Energy and Climate Change Select Committee and Standards Select Committee meetings.  End Fuel Poverty Coalition manifesto launch.  Meeting with Augean Plc regarding technological advances in the waste sector.  Meeting constituents as part of Gaza lobby.  All Party Parliamentary Fuel Poverty and Energy Efficiency Group meeting.  Meeting with RWE Innogy UK regarding onshore wind.  Institution of Civil Engineers event entitled ‘Building a resilient future – at what cost?’  
  • Wednesday – Energy and Climate Change Select Committee meeting.  PMQs.  Environmental Audit Select Committee meeting.  Chairing PRASEG and WWF event entitled ‘the economics of climate change policy’.
  • Thursday – Meeting with Southampton City Council regarding the filming on Derby Road (Immigration Street).  Living Waters Centre project launch at the National Oceanography Centre. 
  • Friday – Speaking at a CRUMBS food bank sustainability event.  Second reading of Alan’s Energy (Buildings and Reduction of Fuel Use) and Houses in Multiple Occupation (Energy Performance Certificates and Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards) Private Member’s Bills.  Opening the new Wessex Cancer Trust Centre at the Centre for the 3rd Age.  First constituency advice surgery of the month.
  • Saturday – Meeting residents in Coxford.  Saints v Newcastle United at home.

This week's diary

Find out what Alan is up to this week.

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I was recently fitted with an air quality monitor as part of an inquiry I'm doing as a member of the Environmental Audit Select Committee.

Long term exposure to air pollution contributed to 28K deaths in the UK in 2010. These high mortality figures convinced me and other EAC members to launch an investigation into the slow progress being made in improving air quality in the UK. The results of my tests (which gathered data in both Soton and London) will feed into the investigation and we'll be publishing a report later this year.

Air Quality in London and Soton

  I was recently fitted with an air quality monitor as part of an inquiry I'm doing as a member of the Environmental Audit Select Committee.


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