• Article: Dec 15, 2018

    Two years ago Brexit seemed inevitable. Now, with 117 Conservative MPs unable even to support the Prime Minister as Conservative leader, it is hard to see how she can get any version of her deal through when the Commons returns in January.

    Meanwhile, 'no deal' is plainly unacceptable to all parties, except for the most extreme of Conservative backbenchers. Parliament is therefore in deadlock.

  • Article: Dec 15, 2018

    A toxic combination of exams, which needlessly heap pressure onto pupils from a young age; unhealthy competition between schools, leaving teachers dreading the next Ofsted inspection; and funding cuts which mean numbers of school nurses have been reduced, is having devastating consequences.

    The NSPCC say the number of schools seeking help from mental health services is rising and on average, 183 children a day are referred to NHS child and adolescent mental health services.

  • Article: Dec 14, 2018

    Brexit is a national embarrassment

    Brexit is a national embarrassment. The events of the last few weeks have proven that the government is in absolute chaos.

    The Prime Minister pulled her Brexit vote; but if that wasn't bad enough her MPs' leadership challenge also spoke volumes: Conservative MPs can change their minds, but the British people cannot!

  • Article: Dec 14, 2018

    Earlier this year, we enjoyed our best council election results in 15 years. We snatched control of councils like South Cambridgeshire, Kingston-upon-Thames and Richmond upon Thames from the Conservatives. And in cities like Hull, Sunderland and Liverpool, we gained ground against complacent Labour councils who've taken their residents for granted.

    Next year over 9,000 council seats and the control of councils around the country will be in the balance. It's a huge chance to build on our successes and make more headlines for the Liberal Democrats.

  • Article: Dec 14, 2018

    1. Thersa May rules out revoking Article 50

    The ECJ rules that No Brexit is an option but Theresa May blindly ploughs ahead with her broken deal. We were given the option to get out of this mess and Theresa May turned it down.

    Only by having a People's Vote will Theresa May listen and cancel Brexit before it's too late.

  • Article: Dec 13, 2018

    After years of putting pressure on the Government, on Tuesday they agreed major concessions on the Tenant Fees Bill.

    We campaigned to:

    • significantly limit the fees that could be charged to a tenant by their landlord or lettings agent,
    • require a greater amount of transparency when deciding not to refund a holding deposit, and
    • limit the maximum security deposit a landlord can require to five weeks rent.
  • Article: Dec 12, 2018

    Yesterday I introduced a bill in Parliament to legalise cannabis for recreational and medicine use.

    The evidence is clear - prohibition isn't working.

    The war on drugs has been a catastrophic failure, leaving young people vulnerable to dangerous strains of cannabis sold by dealers who have absolutely no interest in their welfare.

  • Article: Dec 11, 2018

    An accident in a swimming pool left Chieko Asakawa blind at the age of 14. For the past three decades she's worked to create technology - now with a big focus on artificial intelligence (AI) - to transform life for the visually impaired.

    "When I started out there was no assistive technology," Japanese-born Dr Asakawa says. "I couldn't read any information by myself. I couldn't go anywhere by myself." Those "painful experiences" set her on a path of learning that began with a computer science course for blind people, and a job at IBM soon followed. She started her pioneering work on accessibility at the firm, while also earning her doctorate.

  • Article: Dec 11, 2018
    By Marie-Louise Connolly & Catherine Smyth, BBC NI Health team in https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-46474001

    The mother of a severely-disabled man who is a patient at Muckamore Abbey Hospital described a seclusion room her son was placed in as "a dark dungeon". The woman said she was horrified that in 2017 the room was being used for people with learning disabilities.

    Families want a public inquiry to investigate allegations of physical and mental abuse at the hospital. The Belfast Trust said it "apologised sincerely" for behaviour it said fell below professional standards. In July, it emerged that 13 members of staff at the County Antrim hospital had been suspended by the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust following allegations of ill treatment. At the time it said: "This regrettable and unacceptable situation in no way reflects the work of our 500 dedicated and professional staff who provide excellent care every day to the 80 patients in Muckamore."

  • Article: Dec 11, 2018

    A council has apologised for the second time to the family of a disabled boy who missed out on half a year's schooling.

    The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman found Surrey County Council (SCC) delayed measures intended to resolve the failings.

    It follows an investigation in May which found the council was failing to meet the boy's educational needs. The council apologised and said the boy is now receiving the "right support". The ombudsman said the "injustice" had caused the boy's family "justified frustration, anger and avoidable uncertainty".