Monday 14th December 2015 – It’s the last week before Parliament breaks up for the Christmas recess. On Monday, I’ve a meeting of the Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) Select Committee to discuss the report on our inquiry on the steel industry. Then I’m chairing an APPG on Students meeting about the provision of mental health support for 16-21 year olds moving to further and higher education. College and university is an exciting time in people’s lives, but it can also be very challenging, and we’ll be exploring how students can be effectively supported.
Later in the afternoon, as part of my work as Chair of the APPG on Migration, I will be briefing members of the House of Lords who are soon to be scrutinising the controversial Immigration Bill. I was part of the Public Bill Committee considering the Bill line-by-line in the House of Commons, which you can read more about here. You can also read my article on Open Democracy about why I fear the Immigration Bill could create the conditions for further exploitation of vulnerable migrants.
Tuesday morning the BIS Select Committee will be holding its third evidence session on the Digital Economy when we will listen to businesspeople, lawyers and Business Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe give evidence about intellectual property. The full terms of reference for the inquiry are available here. I will then be in the Chamber of the House of Commons for BIS Questions, where I’ll be trying to be called although I haven’t been selected for a question. Later in the day I hope to be back in the Chamber for part of the debate on the housing crisis which has been called by Labour.
On Wednesday, after the final PMQs before Christmas, I will remain in the Chamber for the presentation of the Private Member’s Bill “Representation of the People (Proportional Representation)”, which I co-sponsored. As Vice-Chair of the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform I am pleased to have this chance to back proportional representation in Parliament, although under a Conservative Government our calls for electoral reform will be unheeded. Then I’ve a visit to South Bank University to meet with the Vice-Chancellor who chairs the university think tank Million+.
On Thursday and Friday I’m back in Sheffield where I’m talking to Politics students at the University of Sheffield, speaking at an event for the local Bangladeshi community, a meeting with the Chief Executive of Museums Sheffield, catching up with my team on casework and hosting Christmas drinks for volunteers who’ve helped me over the last year.