Richard Thomson MP
Gordon Parliamentary Newsletter
A message from Richard Thomson MP
Welcome to my August parliamentary report. Within it, you will find a summary with links and videos giving a snapshot of some of the work I've done on your behalf this month as the MP for Gordon.
Parliamentary recess began on July 22 but it has still been a packed month. From discussions on the arms trade to visiting a new Post Office as part of the 'Save Our Cash' campaign to raise awareness of the need for access to cash in our communities, there have been many important issues to consider.
If my team or I can assist you in any way, please email [email protected] or call 020 3545 2236.
20th July: Question to the Foreign Secretary on Arms sales
The UK Government's Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) published its Human Rights and Democracy report in July 2021 – a report starkly at odds with the reality of UK's arms sales policy to oppressive regimes.
The report lists a total of 31 human rights priority countries. The UK Government currently grants licences to sell arms to 23 of those countries. I asked the Foreign Secretary how granting these licences can be reconciled alongside the UK Government’s commitment to improving human rights in these countries.
Click this link to watch a video of my question: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDlJCK_TcF8
Click this link to read more: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/gordon-mp-questions-foreign-secretary-over-arms-exports-245373/
Challenging the Government on Covid spending
I challenged the Government on unlawfully misdirecting cash meant to assist the fight against Covid to pay instead for political polling on Scottish attitudes to the union.
“I think everyone can see the rank hypocrisy in the UK Government, who seek to deny a future referendum on Scottish independence, simultaneously and unlawfully misdirecting money towards carrying out opinion polling on Scottish attitudes to the Union that was intended to go to the public health efforts against covid. Why, if 'now is not the time', was that polling activity undertaken? Will the Leader of the House use his good offices to prevail upon his colleagues to place the outcomes and findings of that research in the Library, so that the public might better understand exactly what it was that they got for their money?”
Click this link to watch the video: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=830842114213830
Click this link to read more: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/blackfords-move-to-accelerate-uk-covid-inquiry-rejected-lmcqnr2f3
Early Day Motions
Euan McIlwraith and BBC Scotland’s programme Landward – EDM tabled on 14 July 2021
I tabled an EDM to mark the fact that much-loved North East broadcaster Euan McIlwraith is stepping back from his presenting role on BBC Scotland’s Aberdeen-made farming and rural programme, Landward. During the programme’s 30 years on-air, Euan has covered many subjects, notably the foot and mouth outbreak in 2001. Through his career and story-telling abilities, he has made the programme a must-see for many. I wish Euan all the best in the future.
Click this link to read more: https://edm.parliament.uk/early-day-motion/58774/euan-mcilwraith-and-bbc-scotlands-programme-landward
Early Day Motions I signed this month: Aberdeen FC Women’s PremierLeague 2 title EDM 289, Access to cash EDM 293, Pride of Scotland Lifetime Achievement Award awarded to Professor Sir Geoff Palmer EDM 299
Click this link to read more about my parliamentary contributions: https://members.parliament.uk/member/4796/earlydaymotions
Covid-19: Community Response
Backbench Business Committee June 24 debate to recognise Covid champions
It was a real pleasure to be able to speak in this debate and to highlight just some of the outstanding contributions that individuals and community groups right across Gordon have made over the course of the pandemic. Often it is in the worst of circumstances that we find the best of ourselves.
Click this link to read more: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/parliament-recognises-gordon-covid-champions-243474/
ACROSS THE CONSTITUENCY
Fear for jobs at Baker Hughes
There was disappointment this month with the announcement from Baker Hughes that they are beginning a consultation process which may lead to the closure of their Bridge of Don manufacturing base, potentially affecting 100 employees. Together with Constituency MSP Jackie Dunbar, I met with Baker Hughes management to discuss the situation. We are also seeking involvement from the Scottish Government PACE team to help assist those workers affected.
Click here to read the original story: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-58010338
Click here to read the updated story: https://www.richardthomsonmp.com/2021/08/mp-msp-meet-with-baker-hughes-management
In the news…
MP Richard Thomson welcomes connectivity boost for Collieston – read here: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/mp-welcomes-connectivity-boost-244740/
MP Welcomes local support for increased MND research funding – read here: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/support-from-gordon-constituency-for-increased-mnd-research-245052/
MP urges residents to register to give their views on Insch Hospital – read here: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/mp-urges-residents-to-register-to-give-their-views-on-insch-244752/
Lorry driver shortage risks supply chain disruption – read here: https://planetradio.co.uk/northsound/local/news/lorry-driver-shortage-risks-disruption/
MP condemns u-turn on sick pay promise for two million workers – read here: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/mp-condemns-broken-sick-pay-promise-245771/
MP calls for “fair and fast” solution for WASPI women – read here: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/mp-calls-for-solution-for-waspi-245500/
Post Office ‘Save Our Cash’ Campaign
Declining access to cash to be combatted by Post Office
This Post Office campaign has been highlighting the issues faced by the more than eight million people who say they would struggle without being able to use cash as a method of payment. I am happy to support this campaign, and particularly to have been able to do so in Bucksburn’s newly-reopened Post Office, which is providing a much needed Post Office counter service to the area. I met with Postmaster Sal Ahmad and regular customer Mike Cook who took the time to discuss the range of services he has used and the benefits he believes the new post office will bring.
Click this link to read more: https://www.grampianonline.co.uk/news/save-our-cash-gets-mp-support-245353/
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