It’s been said before, but this is another crunch week on Brexit with just 32 days until we’re due to leave the EU. As a Shadow Brexit Minister, I’ve several meetings and will be in the Commons for the PM’s next statement and votes on Wednesday, which will be followed by Brexit Questions on Thursday.
Away from Brexit, today starts with a meeting with Home Office Minister Baroness Williams to press Sheffield knife traders’ concerns about the impact that the Offensive Weapons Bill will have on their ability to sell online and my suggested ‘trusted traders’ scheme to protect them.
Much of tomorrow and Thursday will be spend serving on the Immigration Bill Committee. We opposed the Bill at Second Reading and are seeking to amend it in committee; our amendments include seeking changes to the Settled Status scheme, protection in the event of ‘no deal’, a 28-day limit on immigration detention and dismantling the hostile environment.
On Wednesday I’ll be meeting with the Immigration Minister on future plans for asylum applications, on which I do a lot of work, but which is not covered in the Immigration Bill. I’m also meeting with Migrant Voice to hear more about their concerns over treatment of international students alleged to have cheated in the TOEIC English test, and joining event to launch Fairtrade Fortnight.
Back in Sheffield on Friday I’m catching up with the Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity, meeting Irise International, a Sheffield-based charity working to stop girls in Africa being held back at school by their periods, and talking to Sheffield Climate Alliance Food Group about food sustainability – which was raised in the Big Conversation discussion.
I’ll be catching up with my team on final preparations for our International Women’s Day charity film screening of Desert Flower on Friday 8th March – more information here and contributions to the charities we’re supporting here.