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Jim Fitzpartick
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24 Mar


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GrowTH Shelter Visit

March 24, 2014 | By | No Comments


Last week I stopped by a homeless shelter ran by the excellent GrowTH charity at St Matthias Church, Poplar. John Biggs, Assembly Member for City and East and Tom from my office joined me for what was a revealing visit.

The shelter provides somewhere to sleep at night for those who have fallen on hard times and need temporary accommodation to help them get back on their feet.

Last month we found out that homelessness has doubled in Tower Hamlets since 2010 to 326 people. However the statistics only tell one side of the story. It’s clear from the personal stories I heard there are more homeless people than the governments letting on and not enough is being done to help these people get into work and off the street.

I’d like to thank GrowTH for their invitation to visit. More about them here.

12 Mar


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I’m backing No Smoking Day with a SelfV

March 12, 2014 | By | No Comments


I’m urging smokers to ditch the cigarettes on national No Smoking Day today with a ‘SelfV’.

This year’s campaign has a ‘V for Victory’ theme which is set to inspire hundreds of thousands of smokers across the UK to win the fight against cigarettes. It will help them on the road to victory, providing information, support and encouragement so that they are in the best possible position to make a successful quit attempt on the day.

I encourage smokers in the Poplar and Limehouse to mark No Smoking Day in their diary and attempt to quit along with hundreds of thousands of other people across the UK. Quitting smoking leads to a never-ending list of benefits and this campaign is a great opportunity for smokers to win the battle against cigarettes.

04 Mar


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I’m supporting Fairtrade Fortnight

March 4, 2014 | By | No Comments


Last week I joined Yorkshire Fairtrade business fairandfunky, Yorkshire schools and Foncho at a very special Parly event.

I was delighted to attend, to show support for the campaign to Make Bananas Fair and meet Foncho, a banana farmer from Cienaga in Colombia.

Hearing about the impact of Fairtrade and the need to make bananas fair was very powerful. I was happy to sign the pledge and support the campaign. It was great to see so many young people there engaging in the fairandfunky workshop and learning how they too can support Fairtrade and change the world.

You too can sign the pledge here: http://foncho.fairtrade.org.uk/

11 Feb


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I’m backing ivory crush to support elephants ahead of London summit on illegal wildlife trade

February 11, 2014 | By | No Comments

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Yesterday I joined the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) as the charity crushed hundreds of items of unwanted ivory to help protect elephants from the deadly ivory trade.

IFAW destroyed around 100kgs of ivory items ranging from whole elephant tusks to carvings and jewellery in spectacular fashion in London to raise awareness of the ivory trade and show support for elephant protection ahead of a major international summit on the issue.

Alarmingly, an elephant is killed every 15 minutes for its ivory. It is estimated that at least 25,000 elephants and up to 50,000 are slaughtered each year for their tusks.

I was very pleased to be able to support IFAW’s ivory destruction to raise awareness of this deadly trade which sees elephants killed for trinkets which nobody needs. It is fantastic that so much ivory has been donated by the UK public and put beyond use.

27 Jan


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WEA Visit

January 27, 2014 | By | No Comments


I was delighted to meet Mona and her sewing class last Friday on the Lincoln Estate. The class is organised by the fantastic Workers’ Educational Association and it was really inspiring to talk with the students and hear how much they’re learning.

Mona and her students have big plans for the future and I hope this great community project goes from strength to strength.

22 Jan


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Time to Call Time on the Alcohol Super Tax

January 22, 2014 | By | No Comments

Jim Fitzpatrick MP Miles BealeLast week I supported calls for the super tax on wine and spirits to be cut at an event in Parliament.

Organised by the Wine and Spirit Trade Association, the event helped publicise independent which has found that 6000 new jobs would be created and an extra £230 million generated for the public finances if the super tax were scrapped in the March Budget.

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association, the Scotch Whisky Association and the TaxPayers’ Alliance are all calling on the Chancellor to end what is known as the alcohol duty escalator. Since its introduction in 2008, the escalator has caused the tax on wine and spirits to rocket by 50% for wine and 44% for spirits.

At a time when money is tight, it’s good to hear of a positive step the Chancellor could take to unlock additional revenue to the Exchequer and create 6000 new jobs. And he can do it by cutting taxes.

I will be writing to him to ensure this important research is brought to his attention as a matter of urgency. Scrapping the duty escalator will help businesses up and down the country and provide benefits for the wider economy. It deserves careful consideration.

16 Jan


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Holocaust Memorial Day 2014

January 16, 2014 | By | No Comments


Yesterday I signed the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Book of Commitment in the House of Commons, honouring those who died during the Holocaust as well as honouring the extraordinary Holocaust survivors who work tirelessly to educate young people about what they endured.

It is very important that we both remember and learn from the appalling events of the Holocaust and other tragedies. Holocaust Memorial Day serves as a reminder that we must continue to challenge all forms of hatred and intolerance.

Monday 27th January will mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, the site of the largest mass murder in history.

In the weeks leading up to and after Holocaust Memorial Day, hundreds of commemorative events will be arranged by schools, faith groups and community organisations across London, remembering all the victims of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides.

For more information visit http://www.hmd.org.uk/.

16 Dec


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A Dog is for Life, Not Just for Christmas

December 16, 2013 | By | No Comments

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Last week I attended an event in Westminster organised by Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, to raise awareness of its annual Christmas campaign.

The event, hosted by Neil Parish MP, celebrated the 35th anniversary of the iconic Dogs Trust slogan; “A Dog is for Life, Not Just for Christmas”. The phrase was coined in 1978 by the charity’s CEO, Clarissa Baldwin OBE, in a bid to highlight the issue of dogs being given as Christmas gifts, and indeed all year round, and later abandoned when the novelty wears off.

We were given the opportunity to take a festive Dogs Trust sleigh ride and meet a large number of furry friends. These pooches, however, were all stuffed toys – the only suitable kind of dog to give as a gift!

A dog is a lifetime commitment and should never be bought on impulse as if it were a new television or a pair of shoes. This message is particularly poignant during the festive season, when people are buying all sorts of gifts on a whim without necessarily considering the consequences. I would urge anyone thinking of buying a dog or puppy as a Christmas present to ‘paws’ before doing so, and remember that A Dog is for Life, Not Just for Christmas.

13 Dec


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Save Lloyd and Leila

December 13, 2013 | By | No Comments

Lloyd and Leila

I am grateful to all those who are contacting me in growing numbers, from far and wide, on Twitter, Facebook and by email and letter, in support of our efforts to save Lloyd and Leila. The sentiments expressed have been both encouraging and touching. Here’s an update:

I am continuing to take this case as far as I can with the European Commission.  I am awaiting further clarification from them, in terms procedures and challenges.

There is renewed interest in the media regarding this case, hopefully meaning further coverage over the weekend.

29 Nov


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FA Tesco Skills Kickabout

November 29, 2013 | By | No Comments

Yesterday I took part in an FA Tesco Skills after school session. It’s a great programme ran by fantastic coaches which gives children of all abilities the opportunity to get active, learn new skills and importantly enjoy the game! More info here http://tescoskills.thefa.com/

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Jim Fitzpatrick MP