Sunday, 10 July 2016
Posted by Parveen Hassan
When the country voted in the referendum about Europe a little more than two weeks ago, the message to politicians was clear.
We want out of the European Union – and we want serious change in the way politics works.
Incredibly, lots of our political and business leaders have responded by showing that they still don’t get it.
Some politicians — democratically-elected politicians — have even suggested the Government should ignore the referendum result and keep Britain inside the EU.
Some business leaders, rather than planning for Britain’s departure or thinking of the opportunities withdrawal presents, have chosen to complain about the result and criticise the voters.
Well, I couldn’t be clearer.
Brexit means Brexit.
There must be no attempts to remain inside the EU, no attempts to rejoin it by the back door and no second referendum.
The country voted to leave the European Union and, as Prime Minister, I will make sure that we leave the European Union.
Of course, there are some risks in leaving, which is why we need strong, proven leadership to steer us through a period of economic uncertainty.
But there are also some great opportunities caused by leaving the EU.
The Government will be able to do more to control immigration to Britain from other European countries.
We will be able to negotiate our own trade deals with countries outside Europe.
And we’ll be able to do lots of common-sense things, like cut back on red tape and let local councils buy British.
So we have to seize the chance to get out into the world and help British firms to do business all around the globe.
But as I’ve said, the referendum was not just a vote against our membership of the EU.
It was a vote for change — and I understand why.
In Westminster, I am sometimes criticised for doing politics my own way.
As Ken Clarke said about me this week, I can be a “bloody difficult woman”.
But as I said after-wards: “Yes, and the European Commission is about to find out.”
Because I’m not your typical politician.
I don’t tour the television studios, I don’t gossip about people over lunch, I don’t go drinking in Parliament’s bars.
I don’t often wear my heart on my sleeve.
I just get on with the job and I think that is the kind of no-nonsense politics people want.
They also want a clear, optimistic, positive view of what Britain should look like in the years to come.
And this is important, because, while negotiating the deal that gets us out of Europe is going to be a big job, we still need to be able to get on with governing the country and changing it for the better.
My vision is simple but it is bold.
I want to make Britain a country that works not for a privileged few but for everyone, regardless of who they are and where they’re from.
Because we’re a long way from that point right now.
If you’re born poor in today’s Britain, you will die on average nine years earlier than others.
If you’re black, you’re treated more harshly by the criminal justice system than if you’re white.
If you’re a white, working-class boy, you’re less likely than anyone else in Britain to go to university.
If you’re at a state school, you’re less likely to reach the top professions than if you’re educated privately.
If you’re a woman, you still earn less than a man.
If you suffer from mental health problems, there’s too often not enough help to hand.
If you’re young, you’ll find it harder than ever before to own your own home.
These are all appalling injustices and I am determined to fight against them.
But the mission to make Britain a country that works for everyone goes further than fighting these injustices.
If you’re from an ordinary, working-class family, life is much harder than many people in politics realise.
You have a job, but you don’t always have job security.
You have your own home but you worry about mortgage rates going up.
You can just about manage, but you worry about the cost of living and the quality of the local school — because there’s no other choice for you.
Under my leadership, there will never be any doubt about whose side the Conservative Party is on.
We are going to put ourselves at the service of ordinary, working people.
It is a big job, but we will make Britain a country that works for everyone.
Saturday, 9 July 2016
Wednesday, 6 July 2016
Posted by Parveen Hassan
It is very rare that I can give anyone such unqualified support as I give Andrea Leadsom to be leader of the Conservative Party, and Prime Minister of our country.
I have worked with her as part of the Conservative Fresh Start project for Europe for several years. In that time she has struck me as a woman of extraordinary integrity, wisdom, experience and ability.
I have never seen from Andrea, or those around her, the pathetic mimicry of ‘The House of Cards’, that some politicians seem to think is clever. She has stood out as a shining antithesis to all the muck of the kind of politics I loathe.
I have been constantly impressed as I have learned more about Andrea’s experience and success in the city – here is a woman who has most certainly had ‘a proper job’ outside politics, and knows how the City works. But I have also been surprised at Andrea’s range of interests and passions- her work on family policy has been central to her political beliefs.
Perhaps most importantly for the times in which we live, I can think of no one who has played such a hands-on, active role in working with European partners to improve the European Union, for both Britain and all member states. Nor can I think of anyone who has a better grasp of the EU technicalities, as well as economic requirements of a nation, as Andrea.
Andrea has personally built extremely valuable relationships with politicians across Europe, and such long-forged relationships are now sheer gold-dust for Britain and Europe’s future.
Early in 2005, I remember coming across a little-known politician giving a speech on education. He was standing for Conservative leader. No one expected him to get very far, not least because he wasn’t already a household name. But I thought there was something rather different about him. He broke the mould, and we were patently seeing only the tip of the iceberg of what he was capable of. That man went on to become one of our most successful Prime Ministers ever.
I have watched Andrea since I was elected in 2010. And I know this – not only does she excel in ability, wisdom and experience to do the job – but you haven’t even begun to see the tip of the iceberg of just how talented this woman is, and what she can give our country.
It’s easy to forget that our greatest household names start off as the outsider. Join me in backing our next great household name, Andrea Leadsom, and be there at the beginning.
Posted by Parveen Hassan
As the NFU begins processes to engage with Government on the implications of Brexit on the farming industry, Caroline Spelman MP yesterday pledged her support to British Farmers in helping them get the best deal following the EU referendum result.
Mrs Spelman commented: “The NFU event in parliament was a great opportunity to talk about the future of farming outside the EU. Farmers in the Midlands, work incredibly hard to produce high-quality food and manage our beautiful countryside and they need assurances that the UK government will provide them with the support they need to increase their competitiveness, profitability and productivity as we move forward.
“I was very happy to sign the NFU’s post-referendum pledge to Back British Farming and I will do all I can to ensure that we build a domestic agricultural policy which is adapted to our needs, easy to understand, simple to administer and keeps British farming competitive .”
The NFU is engaging with Government to ensure a strong basis of support for the farming sector – the bedrock of the UK’s largest manufacturing industry, food and drink, which is worth £108billion. NFU President, Meurig Raymond, said it is important that agriculture is part of the political conversation right from the start of talks on new domestic policies.
Mr Raymond said: “This event was the perfect opportunity to urge MPs across the political spectrum not to let the Government ignore the economic importance of the agricultural sector – we want to see action being taken to ensure farming in this country has a thriving future outside of the EU.
“Food security is not a party-political issue. MPs of all colours should be taking the farming sector very seriously – farmers’ ability to feed the nation, and play a part in feeding the world, depends on it.
“The impact of Brexit on the farming sector is huge; trade agreements, access to labour, farm support and regulation are all crucial to agriculture’s future. We’re now presented with a blank canvas for a domestic agricultural policy which is an opportunity for parliament to shape a prosperous future for farming in this country.
Posted by Parveen Hassan
I want to wish all Muslims in Britain and the many Muslims around the world Eid Mubarak! This is a special time, in which families, friends and communities join together in a period of prayer, celebration and joyful contemplation.
I want to take this opportunity to thank British Muslims for the tremendous contribution you make to our country. Many of you will mark Eid al-Fitr as you marked the fasting month of Ramadan, with acts of charity and service to your communities. The generosity of British Muslims in supporting those in need in this country and around the world is truly remarkable.
As families and friends come together, it is also important that we remember how our communities enrich the cultural diversity of this country, and the contribution made by Muslims in many different fields and in different ways to our national life. And I am proud to say I have experienced this hospitality and seen this contribution first hand in my constituency and at events up and down the UK.
But this is also a time to remember those less fortunate and those who are suffering. I think particularly of the appalling attacks we have seen recently in Medina, Baghdad and Turkey and Bangladesh, but also the ongoing pain and hardship in countries such as Syria and the many people who have affected by that terrible conflict.
I want to wish all Muslims once again a joyful and peaceful Eid. The dedication, faithfulness and hard work of Muslims has helped make Britain the country it is today. And by working together, we can make Britain a country which works for everyone.
Posted by Parveen Hassan
Theresa is a long standing friend and ally. We entered parliament together in 1997.
She like me has held the office of party chairman and helped the party to move with the times and return us to government. She has my great respect for the way she has succeeded with a very difficult brief at the Home Office.
Moreover, having started her career in Local Government she will understand very well how decisions made in Whitehall affect local communities.
I believe she has the ability to unite the country and she is a safe pair of hands in challenging times. As a female MP I would be proud to see another woman at the helm.
Saturday, 18 June 2016
Posted by Parveen Hassan
On Friday, at a Conservative private fund raiser, in the West Midlands, Conservatives and supporters echoed the sentiments provided by the Prime Minister, David Cameron on the tragic loss of Jo Cox MP.
The wider public heartfelt tributes on the horrific incident and death of Jo Cox MP was displayed in silence at the beginning of the event with members standing.
Jo’s death is a devastating loss for her family, loved ones, colleagues, and parliament.
As women in public life, continue to serve their communities, local and national, we are reminded how safety is paramount for our public servants.
The country is in a state of shock on the loss of the passionate campaigner and parliamentarian.
Rt Hon Caroline Spelman MP quoted, “I am deeply shocked and saddened by the tragic news the death of Jo Cox MP.
Jo was a passionate campaigner for various humanitarian causes and was highy respected by Members on all side of the House of Commons. My thoughts and prayers are with her husband and her young children at this difficult time.”
This small tribute and vigils across the country continue across the political spectrum and colours.
Rest in peace, you will never be forgotten.