This is a key week for the UK’s future relationship with the EU and I’ll be following events closely. This afternoon Boris Johnson meets the Presidents of the European Commission, Council and Parliament, ahead of a European Council meeting on Friday, after last week’s talks stalled as the Tories seek to row back on their pledges for the deal we need (read my exchange with Michael Gove last week).
As Shadow Minister for Brexit and EU Negotiations I’ve got meetings this week with the Irish Ambassador, representatives of the Welsh Government and the TUC to discuss next steps in negotiations. On Thursday, we’ve got International Trade questions in the Commons where the risks to UK trade will be up for debate.
Today I’ll be sending a letter which I’ve co-ordinated from Sheffield’s MPs to the Education Secretary on action needed to support our universities. Drafted in consultation with both Sheffield universities, it calls for full support for the sector and targeted action on student recruitment and research – and comes as action by the University of Sheffield highlighted the challenges to the sector caused by Covid-19.
I’ll also be talking with colleagues, Councillors and BAME community leaders about how the inspirational ‘Black Lives Matter’ protests that we’ve seen around the world following the murder of George Floyd can become a moment for real change, with action in Sheffield to tackle systemic racism.
Among other meetings this week I’ll be catching up with Councillors in my constituency and with members of the Council’s Cabinet on coronavirus, as lockdown measures continue to be eased, and, of course, a special highlight of the week will be the watching the Blades relaunch the Premier League on Wednesday!