Brexit continues to dominate my time as it does our politics. Today starts with a meeting of our Shadow Brexit team, and then we’ll be in the Chamber for a statement from the Prime Minister updating MPs on the EU summit last week. On Thursday I’ll be challenging the Government on their handling of the negotiations during Brexit Questions, and on Saturday I’ll be talking with Yorkshire and Humber members of the Youth Parliament about it.
The Government chaos on Brexit is reflected in other business too. Last Monday I was set to speak in a debate on the Offensive Weapons Bill, but the Government pulled it at the last minute facing an apparent rebellion from their own MPs. Instead the Bill will be debated today. While I’ve called for co-ordinated action to tackle knife crime, I am concerned about proposals stopping knife manufacturers’ home deliveries, and so I’ve tabled an amendment for a trusted traders scheme to protect local companies.
Also today I’ll be meeting the Immigration Minister to press my concerns on indefinite detention, together with former Conservative Minister Caroline Spelman who was also a member of the cross-party inquiry on the issue. On Wednesday I’ll be joining a Westminster Hall debate which she is leading on asylum seekers’ right to work. Before that I’ll be discussing student employability and skills at an All Party Parliamentary Group on Universities meeting.
After Brexit Questions on Thursday I’ll be meeting with the Director of Focus on Labour Exploitation, a charity where I serve as a trustee, and then I’ll be heading back to Sheffield to speak at the launch of a new office for the Anti Trafficking and Labour Exploitation Unit, a charity giving advice to victims of trafficking, and updating members at the monthly meeting of Sheffield Central Labour Party.
On Friday I’ll be catching up with my staff on local issues arising from the Big Conversation and holding one of my regular advice surgeries. After the Youth Parliament event on Saturday, I’ll be addressing a rally outside Town Hall against the Government’s plans for Universal Credit, then speaking at a South Asian Mental Health Conference, before heading to Bramall Lane to watch the Blades take on Wigan and hopefully return to the top of the table!