Sir David’s legacy was one of care for the people of Southend West. David listened, David cared and David acted. I am determined to build on that wonderful example of what a good constituency MP should look like and deliver for local people in Southend West. Specifically, I want to make the most of the City Status that Sir David fought so hard to secure.
- I intend to lead the charge for Southend to become UK City of Culture in 2029 which will showcase Southend’s unique historical, successful seaside heritage and bring millions of pounds of new investment into the City. I also want to see a NEW national Wildlife Centre on Two Tree Island. Southend-On-Sea and Leigh-on-Sea has some of the most beautiful beaches and one of the only expanding marshes, home to one of the biggest yearly influxes of dark-bellied Brent Geese in the country. Defra ministers are very interested in this rare and expanding habitat and we are in the process of contacting Sir David Attenborough to obtain his support to protect and enhance this unique environmental opportunity.
- Secondly, I am concerned about the high level of domestic violence in Southend West and the relatively low level of arrests for these offences. I have already reached out to the Home Secretary, who has agreed to come back to Southend and host a domestic violence summit to help tackle this issue. I am also meeting with the Police regularly to tackle knife and violent crime, such as working to install mobile offensive weapon detection points around Old Leigh each summer.
- On health, I am working with local GPs and health professionals to improve access to face-to-face GP appointments, as well as introducing new “Every Step Counts” wellbeing walks across Southend to help tackle loneliness and improve mental health. I am also a strong supporter of the Crisis Café system to provide emergency mental health provision to help tackle poor mental health, especially in young people. I am also a strong advocate for better, earlier and less invasive treatment for prostate cancer that, ultimately, killed my father. Prost8 in the constituency is a wonderful charity that has my full support.
- I am also committed to building on Sir David’s legacy and recently I have started a campaign to amend the Dangerous Dogs Act to outlaw dog on dog killings and I have also joined the Education Select Committee and am committed to championing and supporting our fantastic Southend grammar schools.
- I intend to spearhead a NEW “Making it Happen Voluntary & Community Awards 2022” event to celebrate Southend’s outstanding charity and voluntary sector, as well as working with the government to secure the investment our small businesses and high streets need, from Leigh-on-Sea to Westcliff-on-Sea. so they remain attractive places to visit and shop.