Last week Jenny joined 128 MPs calling on the Football Association to donate unsold England Football Team tickets at Wembley stadium to schools across the country.
The letter, spearheaded by Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP (Shadow Minister for Sport), wants steps to be taken to ensure that the days of wasted empty seats are ended and to work with schools across the country.
"It is important we give girls and boys from across the country the chance to cheer on the Three Lions and inspire the next generation of footballers.
There were 28,000 empty seats at England's last home game against Slovenia. I echo Rosena's comments, it is 28,000 lost opportunities. I recently visited a team in Darlington, I am sure the girls and boys I met would dream of cheering on our national side at Wembley, but all too often they never get the chance.
Whilst the FA has done much to boost the sport at the grassroots level, more could and should be done to inspire the next generation of footballers. Giving away unsold tickets, particularly to schools in the most deprived areas, would do a great deal toward balancing out opportunities for all our young people".
Text from letter
Dear Mr Clarke,
We are writing today on behalf of the millions of England supporters we represent in Parliament.
Firstly, we would like to extend our congratulations to the Football Association, Gareth Southgate and the entire England team for qualifying for next year's World Cup. We're going to be cheering you on and the Three Lions will once again carry the hopes and dreams of this country as we will them to succeed.
But we are writing to you today because last week, England played Slovenia at Wembley Stadium in front of a crowd of 61,000 people - with 28,000 seats left empty. They represent 28,000 lost opportunities - opportunities to inspire England stars of the future.
We appreciate the work that the FA does at a grassroots level in our constituencies and note that the FA gave away 7,000 complimentary tickets to last Thursday’s game to charities and organisations from across the country. But this was a chance to do so much more. Wembley's 28,000 empty seats represents around a thousand school classes.
There are children across the country dreaming of being the next Harry Kane but seeing him play live remains a distant fantasy for many of them. There are children living in London's most deprived estates who can see Wembley from their bedroom windows but will never get the chance to go inside.
This is where the FA can make a real difference. For games where the FA expects or knows there will be a large number of empty seats, these unsold tickets should be given to our schools, especially those from deprived areas. Doing so could help transform the future of thousands of children.
The experiences we have in our formative years - especially when we are young children – help to shape what we believe is possible for us to achieve. Visiting Wembley, one of the world’s most famous stadiums, to watch our national team play, broadens the horizons of those fortunate enough to go.
We ask you to take steps to ensure that the days of wasted empty seats are ended and to work with schools across the country so that current and future generations of schoolchildren are given the opportunity to be entertained, motivated and inspired.
We look forward to your response.
With many thanks and best wishes,
Last week Jenny joined 128 MPs calling on the Football Association to donate unsold England Football Team tickets at Wembley stadium to schools across the country. The letter, spearheaded...
Today is World Mental Health Day. I've already pledged to raise the bar for better mental health alongside Mind in Darlington.
I will also continue to support better provision for our young people and Government ring-fenced mental health budgets.
Today is World Mental Health Day. I've already pledged to raise the bar for better mental health alongside Mind in Darlington. I will also continue to support better provision for our young...
Jenny stopped by to show her support for the UK Guide Dogs campaign on guide dog taxi refusals. Jenny learnt about the challenges assistance dog owners face when being illegally refused by taxis and minicabs.
The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal for a taxi or minicab driver to refuse to take an assistance dog or to charge extra for carrying it. However, Guide Dogs research found that 42% of assistance dog owners have been turned away by a taxi or minicab in a one-year period because of their dog. The research also uncovered that 38% of assistance dog owners have been asked to pay an extra fare for carrying their dog.
Jenny is supporting UK Guide Dogs’ call for all taxi and minicab drivers to undertake disability equality training so they understand the rights and needs of disabled passengers and feel confident to offer assistance. The campaign is supported by more than 30 organisations, including trade bodies, local government representatives and disability groups.
“I welcome the Guide Dogs’ efforts to bring about positive change for people who require the assistance of a guide dog and find it really difficult to use taxi services.
I know, having spoken to local residents in Darlington, that this is an issue which has a detrimental effect on people living independent lives”.
James White, Senior Campaigns Manager at Guide Dogs, commented:
“Imagine you were turned away by a taxi driver for no reason. This happens to people living with sight loss with shocking regularity just because they are travelling with their guide dog. It’s not only illegal, it knocks people’s confidence and stops them doing the everyday things that most people take for granted – going to a café, meeting friends, going to the doctor’s or to their local football match.
We are urging the Government to require disability equality training for all drivers to help reduce the number of access refusals.”
Jenny stopped by to show her support for the UK Guide Dogs campaign on guide dog taxi refusals. Jenny learnt about the challenges assistance dog owners face when being illegally...
Darlington’s MP Jenny Chapman last week attended a parliamentary event bringing together people with living with mental health problems, representatives from Darlington Mind and other parliamentarians to discuss mental health provision in England.
Jenny joined the ‘Mental Health: Raising the Bar’ event organised by national mental health charity Mind in the House of Commons, with the aim of promoting conversations between people with mental health problems, local Minds responsible for providing services and policymakers.
Following on from Jenny’s recent visit to Darlington MIND, she listened to the experiences of people affected by poor mental health and committed to ‘raising the bar’ for mental health services in the town.
“I know from my time representing Darlington the issues surrounding mental health provision in our town, including access to services and referral times. I have helped support many constituents with poor mental health access vital services and care. I’m committed to doing all I can to transform mental health services so that everyone in Darlington gets the information, advice and treatment they need and deserve, when they need it. I am committed to working with local organisations.
Around 1 in 4 people in Darlington will experience a mental health problem in any given year. It’s so vital that we collectively ‘raise the bar’ for mental health services”.
Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind, said:
“Mental health problems can affect anyone, no matter what their background. All main political parties have recognised the scale of the problem, but after decades of neglect and underfunding there’s still a great deal of unmet need. Every day we hear from people struggling to access the support they need.
“We are really pleased that [name of MP] took the time to listen to people’s first-hand experiences as well as find out more about some of the work our local Minds do to support people in [area]. By participating in this event, we hope that MPs recognise the importance of mental health and the vital role they play in ensuring that those of us living with mental health problems get the services and support they need to recover, stay well and lead fulfilling lives.”
Darlington’s MP Jenny Chapman last week attended a parliamentary event bringing together people with living with mental health problems, representatives from Darlington Mind and other parliamentarians to discuss mental health... Read more
Jenny is encouraging Darlington residents to apply to the Heritage Lottery Fund for grants to explore the town’s First World War legacy.
Jenny welcomes the news that more than £11 million has been invested in Darlington’s heritage projects since 1994 by the National Lottery. The money has enabled research into the town’s local history, helping to preserve important local sites and providing grants for other heritage related projects. Recent examples of funding include Darlington Borough Council’s successful bid in winning £42,300 investment for the town’s Head of Steam Museum.
The Heritage Lottery Fund is encouraging people in Darlington to apply for grants between £3,000 and £10,000 to undertake projects exploring the impact and legacy of the First World War and its aftermath. Whether that is looking at the role the war played in bringing about universal suffrage; the introduction of daylight saving hours; or the mechanisation of agriculture, there is a wealth of local stories waiting to be explored about life following the war.
“Darlington has a rich history and I’m delighted to support the Heritage Lottery Funds call for local residents to take part in exploring our town’s important history. British society was inextricably altered by the Great War, no part of our society was left untouched. Our town will be no different, I would be fascinated to learn more about the part Darlington played in the First World War.
Many people have an interest in research and local history, but perhaps do not have the funds to dig deeper. I would encourage residents to find out more and apply.”
Chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Sir Peter Luff, said:
“Sadly, the ‘war to end all wars’ was no such thing and so it is right the events of the First World War should never be forgotten. We’ve been helping people across the UK explore an incredible array of stories from 1914-18, but the war had an impact beyond 1918 and we must recognise this. The legacy of the First World War needs to be better understood and so we are encouraging people to come to us with their ideas for projects.”
The money is available through HLF’s community grants programme, First World War: then and now.
Jenny is encouraging Darlington residents to apply to the Heritage Lottery Fund for grants to explore the town’s First World War legacy. Jenny welcomes the news that more than £11...
Responding to the latest social care funding report, Jenny Chapman has accused the Government of overseeing a devastating social care crisis. Since 2010 local authorities in England have seen their budgets cut by £4.6 billion, resulting in 400,000 fewer people now receiving publicly funded social care. As a result of Government decision making 1.2 million pensioners in England currently live with unmet care needs, which Ms Chapman calls a “shame on our society”.
Jenny Chapman MP echoes comments made by Barbara Keeley, Shadow Minister for Social Care and Mental Health. Jenny said:
“Social care is in crisis in our country. Decisions made in Downing Street have brought us to this point, Theresa May must stop turning a blind eye to the problems in social care and address the funding crisis urgently.
“The local authority in Darlington has seen its budget for social care cut by 37.4 per cent between 2011 and 2017. These statistics highlight the Government’s shockingly inept commitment to safeguard vulnerable people in our community – these are people in Darlington who are not getting the care and support they need.
“These same plans were drawn up by the same people who wanted to introduce the “Dementia Tax”, which was so unpopular nationally our Prime Minister was forced into a U-turn on the idea.
“Labour has warned time and again of the growing crisis in social care. The competing pressures of an ageing population and chronic underfunding cannot go on. Theresa May must act now to make sure that councils like ours in Darlington have the money to provide quality social care for all those who need it.”
Councillor Sue Richmond, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care at Darlington Borough Council said:
“There is no doubt that the Government’s unprecedented cuts have had, and will continue to have, a significant effect on the provision of adult social care in Darlington.
Although staff in adult social care have been proactive in order to adapt to service pressures and have worked hard to ensure the impact to residents is minimal, we will need to work differently with residents and our partners in health and the voluntary sector in order to sustain and improve services for the future as a result of budget cuts.”
Responding to the latest social care funding report, Jenny Chapman has accused the Government of overseeing a devastating social care crisis. Since 2010 local authorities in England have seen their...
On Monday 10th July Jenny spoke in the Commons regarding the life satisfaction of service personal. Jenny also argued for a review into the services offered to the family of those in the Armed Forces by local authorities and the rules around divorce.
You can read the transcript here or follow the link to watch Jenny speak in the Chamber.
Defence questions – House of Commons – 10th July 2017
Oral questions to the Secretary of State for Defence and team
Jenny Chapman MP – Shadow Minister for Exiting the EU:
What steps is his Department taking to improve service life satisfaction rates in the Armed Forces.
Tobias Ellwood MP – Undersecretary of State for Defence:
The experience and morale of service personnel are central to defence. Both the Department and the new single services place the management of this as a high priority. As such, we have put in place a large number of programmes, namely the flexible engagement system—a Bill on which will come to the House shortly—the future accommodation model, the new joiners offer and the armed forces family strategy.
Jenny Chapman MP – Shadow Minister for Exiting the EU:
Currently, forces families are given special assistance by local authorities when they leave the Army. Is the Minister aware that, upon divorce or separation, an Army spouse is instantly no longer classed as part of an Army family and receives no such support?
Will he look into this and consider amending the advice given to local authorities?
Tobias Ellwood MP – Undersecretary of State for Defence:
I am certainly happy to look into that, and I am grateful that the hon. Lady has taken the matter up. It is important that we get the package of measures right so that we can support our armed forces personnel and their families as they transition through their career.
Watch Jenny by clicking here.
On Monday 10th July Jenny spoke in the Commons regarding the life satisfaction of service personal. Jenny also argued for a review into the services offered to the family of...
As you know, the General Election will be held on 8th June 2017.
This session of Parliament will end on 3rd May and so we will have no MPs until the new Parliament meets.
That means I will no longer be your elected representative - I will become a Parliamentary candidate as of May 3rd.
As you know, the General Election will be held on 8th June 2017. This session of Parliament will end on 3rd May and so we will have no MPs until...