On Thursday 22 July, Sir David Amess, MP for Southend West, spoke in the annual Summer Adjournment Debate before the House of Commons rose for summer recess.
Sir David took the opportunity to raise a number of constituent concerns and national issues, including social care, housing, environmental issues, pensions, a permanent memorial to Dame Vera Lynn and city status for Southend.
Sir David said:
"Before the House adjourns for the summer recess, I wish to raise a number of points.
There should be no disparity in care costs between private self-payers and council-placed residents. No one should have to give up their family home to pay for care. Political parties should agree on a way forward.
Too often, new housing developments do not allow for the immediate accompanying infrastructure to be built alongside them, making housing more accessible for people with disabilities. I am pleased that the Government are at last reviewing building regulations. Significant costs are created by switching from a gas to an electric boiler. The cost of environmentally friendly alternatives needs to be assessed if we are to meet our target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050. We should look into using tidal power.
My constituents are worried about their safety because of jet skis in the water. Those jet skis must be used and managed responsibly. We urgently need to reduce the production of single-use plastic to cut the amount of waste we export abroad that eventually ends up in landfill. I am looking forward to propose amendments to the Environment Bill, which will see the Government publish a plan by September 2022 to reduce sewage discharges from storm overflows.
As part of the celebrations for the platinum jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen, Southend will be bursting into leaf. Many trees will be donated by the embassy of the Maldives and by local businesswoman, Mrs Barbara Coxell, and will grace our parks, schools and churches. The United Kingdom will be the first country in Europe to ban the live export of animals for slaughter, and I look forward to seeing a ban on cages as well.
I have been contacted by a constituent expressing concern about how his case was dealt with by the pension ombudsman. It seems that, currently, there is not an effective system in place to make a complaint about the conduct of this body. We should change all that.
One of my constituents, Angela Greenwood, has written a book that explores the development of a thoughtful, understanding and relationship-based approach to working with vulnerable children. The contents of this book could not be more relevant now in the light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Last month, I helped to launch the public appeal for a permanent memorial to the great, late Vera Lynn in Dover. A memorial is the very least that we can do for this wonderful woman. I urge everyone to turn to the JustGiving page and give whatever they can afford.
As chairman of the all-party group for the Olympic and Paralympic games, I join everyone in wishing our athletes every success. Congratulations to my constituent, Kelly Swain, on completing a wing walk last month. She raised more than £20,000 for the charity, N.O.W’s the time for change, and she is now planning for a parachute jump next year. We must not forget the centenary of the Royal British Legion in September, and, of course, we must make Southend a city."