During this pandemic, many people have suffered considerable hardship, whether it be financial, through their, or one of their, loved one’s health, or through loneliness and the effects on their mental health.
Throughout this pandemic, there has been considerable demand for my assistance in my work as MP for Northampton North. This is always my top priority. There has of course also been an increased workload with my ministerial work as a Government Law Officer, including attending COBR meetings and working on emergency legislation to help combat Covid-19.
During this exceptionally busy time I have kept up my response time of replying to my constituents within just 2 working days, a practice which has previously meant I was ranked 1st out of all 650 MPs in responding to constituents.
Over the 166-day period from Monday 23rd March to Friday 4th September, I personally sent out 5,373 emails in reply to individual constituents from Northampton North who had contacted me for help and advice. I also was asked to intervene on behalf of 189 residents in Northampton North cases.
A ‘case’ is an instance where I personally intervene, often by writing to the Chief Executive of a local authority like the Council or a Government minister, or a police chief or hospital leader, on constituents’ behalf to try to help them in their situation.
These 189 individual casework cases do not include the several thousand occasions I have responded to constituents on matters of government policy, such as helping to clarify Covid-19 regulations. During the above time period I sent out 5,373 emails in reply to individual constituents in Northampton North.
Here are just a few examples of cases I have intervened in during the pandemic:
- I wrote to the Government Business Department (BEIS) at the request of Northampton Borough Council to help clarify the rules around business grants, helping many businesses in Northampton to receive grants of up to £25,000.
- I also wrote to NBC directly on behalf of over a dozen small businesses in Northampton, helping them to receive their business grants – these small businesses included pubs, hospitality sector businesses, and cafes.
- Helped care homes in Northampton to receive the testing kits and the test results they needed to keep their residents safe.
- I wrote to the Department for Education to resolve issues for schools in our town, such as an issue with the Free School Meal system, which resulted in the schoolchildren receiving the vouchers for which they were eligible.
- Writing to the Council and the Police on multiple issues ranging from tackling crime to helping people in crisis situations with their housing.
As you can see from the pie-chart above, the biggest category of case I have helped with recently are to do with housing – this normally includes working with the Council and Northampton Partnership Homes to either get people re-housed in council accommodation or to help resolve any issues with existing housing.
I am continuing to deal with many more cases and reply to many more constituents requiring help. Residents of Northampton North can always feel free to write to me if I can be of assistance.