Could you change a child’s future?

adoptionIn National Adoption Week, City MP Stephen Morgan is encouraging local people to consider adoption to help change a child’s life.

Adoption is a lifelong commitment, and one of the most amazing things you can do.  It is about providing a permanent family for children in care who cannot, for whatever reason, return home.

Adopters take on all the rights and responsibilities for the child that birth parents had, offering a child stability, love and security within a family home, throughout their childhood and beyond.

The Portsmouth Adoption Service is a government organisation that recruits adopters from across Hampshire, within 50 miles of Portsmouth city.  They hold regular information sessions twice per month. For anyone thinking of adopting a child or young person, the team try to make the process as quick, clear and seamless as possible.

Stephen Morgan, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, said:

“Last week it was a pleasure to welcome representatives of the city’s adoption team to the House of Commons, to thank them for all they do to help change children’s lives in our city.

Children need a loving, stable home. They need parents who will stick by them through the good times and the bad. They need support and love to help them overcome their troubled backgrounds, make sense of who they are and grow up to be safe and secure.

Adopting a child is a life-changing experience. It’s one of the most important decisions you could make, and there is support to help anyone who may feel are able to make it.

I would urge anyone considering adoption to get in touch with the team”.

For more information about how you can adopt visit http://www.adoption.portsmouth.gov.uk/ 

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CITY MP RESPONDS TO CITY CENTRE PLANS

The Hard 1Responding to plans for city centre improvements in Portsmouth, local councillor and city MP Stephen Morgan said:

“I welcome any proposal to transform our city centre so that we can attract the much needed investment to put the heart back into it. 

We need an imaginative scheme that provides a range of much needed homes for local people, and a vibrant and competitive retail offer that brings in private investment. We also need good quality office accommodation to help businesses of all sizes thrive and grow again in the heart of our city. 

This project gives us an opportunity to reinvigorate our local economy and create well paid jobs for local people. I’m keen to ensure that it also puts the best principles of sustainability into practice so that we reduce the environmental impact of congestion and pollution on local communities.

Sadly though our great city isn’t getting its fair share from central government. The Tories must now prioritise Portsmouth and give the city the investment it so desperately needs so that we can work with business to create sustainable prosperity for future generations.

These proposals have been a long time coming and I’m happy to work with others to make them a reality. 

Now is the time to crack on and make our city centre a destination again. The council must now get on with that job”.


GOVERNMENT MUST BE MORE AMBITIOUS IN TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE SAYS CITY MP

Climate changeLabour is scrutinising the government’s climate change plan as action on climate change is crucial to ensure the UK is protected from extreme weather events like flooding. 

But it is also an opportunity to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the UK. Our low carbon industries employ over 230,000 people full time and create a £43billion turnover in the economy.

After many delays, today the Government finally announced its Clean Growth Strategy. Pressure from Labour succeeded in getting the Government to finally publish this document.

Stephen Morgan, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, said:

“Labour have been pushing for months for the Government to release this long delayed plan. They have an abysmal track record of cancelling support for renewable energy and watering down building standards.

Climate change is an incredibly important issue. That’s why Labour is right to  scrutinise the government’s new climate change plans to make sure they will deliver the clean sustainable future we need”.

Now that a new plan has been published, Stephen wants to ensure the UK Government keeps its promises, achieves agreed targets and delivers a low carbon economy.

He added:

“I will keep fighting for Portsmouth South securing investment in our sustainable businesses, clean energy industries and the sustainable jobs of the future.”


Portsmouth MP tackles ‘beach clean’ to highlight litter problem

IMG_2855Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan joined the local Wildlife Trust on Southsea beach to do a mini ‘beach clean’ and highlight the problem of litter.
Many conservation organisations and campaign groups encourage people to spend a few minutes picking up litter that’s been washed up or left on our beaches, to prevent harm to wildlife and people. It’s estimated that UK beaches have on average over 2000 pieces of litter per kilometre stretch. Plastic items, which break down into smaller and smaller pieces, and enter the food chain, usually make ups over half of our beach litter.
Local volunteers organise a monthly beach clean on Southsea beach, usually on the first Saturday of the month. For more information and the next date, visit:https://www.facebook.com/SouthseaBeachwatch
Stephen Morgan MP said:
“It was great to visit Southsea Beach with the local Wildlife Trust to hear more about the problem of litter on our beaches. 
 
I was shocked by just how much we found in a matter of minutes and would encourage everyone in Portsmouth to get out and do their bit in cleaning up our city’s fantastic coast”.
Debbie Tann, Hampshire and Isle of Wight WIldlife Trust Chief Executive said:
Litter in our oceans and on our beaches is a real threat to both wildlife and people. Plastic is a particular problem, as it never really degrades and instead breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, affecting fish, seabirds and marine mammals. 
 
Every piece of litter collected is a step towards cleaning up our amazing marine environment.”

Statement from Stephen Morgan MP on BAE job losses

img_2928Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, has expressed his huge disappointment at the news BAE Systems plan to cut approximately 340 jobs in Portsmouth, with a total of 1,750 jobs expected to be lost across the company’s aerospace and marine divisions.

Commenting on the proposed job losses, Stephen Morgan MP said:

“This is terrible news for the workers, their families and our great city. These are highly-skilled, hardworking men and women who deserve better.

I have already been in contact with the unions and BAE Systems, as well the appropriate Government Minister, to express my serious concern about the impact these job losses could have not only on families in our city but also Portsmouth’s wider economy”.

There are calls on Government to guarantee that long-term projects, such as the next generation fighter jets, future support ships and Type 31e frigates, will be designed and built here in the UK.

Stephen added:

The Government are hollowing out the UK’s sovereign defence capability by spending increasing amounts of the defence budget in factories overseas.

It is time the Government acted to invest UK taxes here and supply our industry and the nation with a proper defence industrial strategy to provide certainty and protect British workers from further job cuts”.

Stephen has committed to continuing to work with local unions to stand with them to ensure everything is done to try to protect jobs in Portsmouth.

He added:

“I will not stand by and let short term decisions harm our city’s communities, jobs and skills.

I stand with them to fight for every job and support every community under threat.

The Government – as one of BAE Systems biggest customers – must come forward urgently with a clear plan to secure these jobs at BAE and give the industry the certainty that it needs”.

 


World Mental Health Day – Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan has joined calls for more to be done to support those with mental health issues.

counsellingStephen has co-signed a letter to the Prime Minister to celebrate the great strides that have been made in our country to challenge stigma and discuss mental health more openly, and to urge Mrs May to make a vital change that will advance the cause of mental health.
In July last year the Prime Minister referred to the ‘burning injustice’ that ‘if you suffer from mental health problems, there’s not enough help to hand.’ In January this year, Mrs May went on to say: ‘for too long mental illness has been… dangerously disregarded as a secondary issue to physical health.’
Stephen said:
“I see injustice every day in Portsmouth. Residents in this great city face long waits to access mental health services, if they get a referral at all. 
 
The number of young people and adults turning up at A&E in a crisis continues to rise. The amount and quality of contact provided in the community has diminished significantly. And too often inpatient treatment means leaving family and friends for a unit hundreds of miles from home”.
In the Prime Minister’s disastrous speech to the Conservative Party Conference last week May said the Government was ‘investing more in mental health than ever before.’
However, despite this pledge money is not reaching the frontline. For the second year in a row, over half of Clinical Commissioning Groups across England report that they plan to reduce the proportion of their budgets they spend on mental health; some areas are allocating as little as 6% of their total resources to mental health.  
Stephen added:
“I urge the Prime Minister today – on World Mental Health Day – to commit the government to ring-fence mental health spending. There is precedent with other areas of NHS funding and this would be a transformative policy that would make a real difference to local services”. 
 
Thanks to the work of Labour colleagues in the House of Lords, parity between physical and mental health is now enshrined in law. Labour would like to see this aspiration become a reality and believe ring-fencing will get us one step closer to real equality for mental health. 

Local MP praises work of city’s lifeguards

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Stephen Morgan, Portsmouth South’s Member of Parliament, this week paid the local lifeguard service a visit to thank them for all they do to keep Portsmouth’s residents and visitors safe and see their work firsthand.

The voluntary lifeguards is a beach lifeguard club based in Southsea. Founded in 1933, it is the oldest lifeguard club in the UK. The ​the main focus of the club is to provide lifeguard cover for Southsea seafront, which takes the form of shoreline, surfski and boat patrols, during weekends and bank holidays between May and September.

In addition to the patrols undertaken, the club is a declared rescue unit to HM Coastguard which sees both lifeguard members and rescue boats being tasked to 999 incidents on Southsea beach and in the Solent. The club also provides specialist rescue and first aid cover for special events.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“It was a privilege to visit the Lifeguard’s station on Southsea seafront, meet the volunteer team and see the equipment they use whilst out on patrol in the Solent.

Portsmouth Lifeguards do a brilliant job – often unnoticed – giving up their time for free to keep us safe and provide a vital service to those in need.

I thank them for all they do in our great city”.

The Lifeguards rely 100% on generous donations. The volunteers give up their free time, in order to be available to be called into action at any point to help others. For more information about their work or to donate to their organisation visit: www.portsmouthlifeguards.org/donate.html