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Portsmouth MP teams up with Google to urge pensioners to protect themselves online

Stephen Morgan, Shadow Communities Minister, has been working with Google through their Digital Garage initiative to raise awareness of online safety and protect city pensioners when using the internet.

Teaming up with the Portsmouth Pensioners Association and Google team, the Portsmouth MP arranged a free and open to all training session for local pensioners to hear from experts and find out about 121support at Google’s training hub, the Digital Garage, at 105a Commercial Road, Portsmouth.

The garage opened late last year to provide free workshops for everyone. The latest action by the city MP, follows a range of activities since Mr Morgan helped secure the city centre facility for community use by Portsmouth residents.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“We all have something we want to do, but haven’t yet. Whether a lack of time, opportunity or support, Google Digital Garage is here to help Portsmouth people take the first steps.

 

After listening to constituents’ concerns, I have wanted Google to prioritise making sure older people feel safe online. I am delighted the Portsmouth Pensioners Association and Google Garage team have come together to help city pensioners and it was a pleasure to play my part”.

 

On the importance of online security the Shadow Communities Minister added:

 

“Email and online shopping can make our lives a lot easier, but they also create new opportunities for fraud.

 

Online scams are becoming increasingly common and sophisticated, so I encourage all older people to seek help and find out how to keep safe.

 

I appreciate all those organisations and charities which are doing their bit to help people use the internet safely”.

Google’s workshops are free and for everyone. From growing your career with new skills to growing your business with digital tools (or starting a business altogether), the team of coaches is there to help.

 

Any Portsmouth resident can pop in or book a free online course from the Portsmouth Garage. To find out more visit: g.co/PortsmouthGarage

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Portsmouth MP pulls together leading minds for Electoral Reform public meeting

Stephen Morgan MP has organised a constituency-based public meeting in a bid to hear from experts and constituents’ views over fairer voting.

The city MP has pulled together a team from electoral reform organisations and will be sharing the platform with the Electoral Reform Society’s Director of Policy, Make Votes Matter and Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform at a public meeting next month. The event is open to all Portsmouth South constituents.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“I want to see a voting system where every vote counts. The fact millions of people vote in ‘safe’ seats where their voice isn’t heard is an insult to our democracy. Our voting system is clearly broken.

Parliament must represent the voices of Britain, and under First Past the Post this is not being achieved.

That is why I have put together this public meeting with leading minds on the issue. I encourage all those who share this vision of a democratised voting system to come and get involved.

I would also like to thank the University of Portsmouth for hosting this event for constituents to have their say.”

The current voting system, First Past the Post, is often criticised for not being representative. 

Electoral Reform Society’s Director of Policy Jessica Garland said:

 “Westminster’s outdated voting system has left voters feeling powerless for too long. People are rightly fed up with the divisive, one-party-takes-all politics that warps results and skews our political debate. It’s time to ensure every voice is heard, with real reform and a move to Proportional Representation.

“It’s great that Stephen Morgan is promoting this vital cause. How MPs are elected makes a huge difference to what issues are heard and to trust in politics. We look forward to joining this meeting, working with Stephen and campaigners across the spectrum to build a stronger democracy.”

The well-subscribed event is set to take place Thursday 5 March 2020 at 7:30 pm at Lecture Theatre LT2 in the Richmond Building.

Places are still available to book here. Booking is essential.

 

 

 

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Portsmouth CLP backs Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner

On the Leadership, Mr Morgan said: 

“Keir Starmer knows that when Labour comes together, we are a force for radical change unlike any other. With a right-wing Government to oppose and a country to win over, there is so much at stake.

I am delighted the Portsmouth constituency party has also put their trust in Keir and voted to nominate him as the leader to unite every part of our party and our movement.

With Keir at the helm, we can all work together and unite to bring about the society we want to see and get us on the path back to power.”

On the Deputy Leadership, Mr Morgan said: 

“I am delighted that Portsmouth CLP has backed Angela Rayner for deputy leader. Her ability to bring the party together,  empower activists and fight for practical policies is precisely what Portsmouth and the Labour party need.”

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‘Government not giving flooding the priority it deserves’ says City MP after Minister cancels meeting about Portsmout

Stephen Morgan, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, has criticised Government after the Minister responsible for tackling flooding cancelled an important meeting about investment in Portsmouth.  The proposed meeting about Southsea sea defence scheme was cancelled with just hours to go.

The parliamentary meeting, orchestrated by Mr Morgan as part of ongoing work alongside the local authority to secure funding for the largest sea defence scheme in the country, was set to take place today with the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and Portsmouth City Council reps.

Previously Mr Morgan raised concerns over the priority Government is giving to the scheme as the department only offered 15 minutes for the meeting with the city MP, local authority officers and the Environment Agency.

Mr Morgan said:

“This meeting was only agreed after months of being given the run-around by Government and originally being offered a meeting of just 15 minutes. The cancellation at the last minute shows a complete lack of respect for Portsmouth.

There have been three serious coastal defence breaches in our city in the last six years, so it is little wonder the Southsea Sea Defence scheme is probably the biggest of its kind the nation has ever seen. 8,000 properties, 700 businesses and hundreds of livelihoods are depending on its success.

Following events and flooding over the last few days I share concerns that Government is not taking seriously the risk of flooding. Portsmouth has thought through plans for its sea defence scheme.

I will continue to take action so that the local authority gets the support it needs from Government and our city is given priority to protect our communities”.

The city MP has also repeatedly invited the Secretary of State to visit the city to understand the scale of the proposed scheme and need for investment, an invitation declined by the top politician in charge. The government is likely to invest in the scheme that has been developed with public consultation, but a number of important actions remain.

The last few days have reminded us all of the need for adequate funding to local authorities for flooding protection. The Environment Agency’s own analysis has revealed that national funding for this financial year (£815m) falls short of what is needed.

The meeting cancelled by the Government Minister comes amid some of the worst weather experienced in the UK for decades.  Some areas saw a month and a half’s rainfall in 24 hours and gusts of more than 90 miles per hour swept across the country.

The Prime Minister has previously committed to hosting a flood summit bringing together regional partners and stakeholders and local representatives, but to date has failed to deliver on this promise.

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City MP pledges to protect oceans

Stephen Morgan MP, who signed up to Greenpeace’s oceans pledge earlier this month, has now called on Government to support a bold Global Ocean Treaty in a number of cutting parliamentary questions.

The city MP’s parliamentary actions come amid UN discussions in New York surrounding the Global Ocean Treaty.

The continued efforts follow local actions by campaigners which the Portsmouth South representative is supporting.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“Overfishing, plastic pollution, and oil drilling are gutting our oceans of life and destroying delicate ecosystems. There is no planet B and we cannot afford for complacency.

Right now, only 1% of the world’s oceans are protected. Scientists say that we need to protect at least 30% by 2030.

It falls at the feet of government to treat this issue with due priority and ensure that appropriate representation is sent to New York for discussions around the Global Ocean Treaty.”

The talks have been described as being on a knife edge – and could result in a weak treaty unable to properly protect marine life.

Mr Morgan added:

I have submitted questions directly to the Government department responsible in a bid to urge a strong UK presence at these international discussions.

To get the ambitious deal our oceans and climate need, we need senior politicians in the negotiating room who can push for a strong treaty.”

Tackling the climate emergency and being a national voice on environmental matters is a priority for the Portsmouth MP. He has been working closely with Friends of the Earth, has orchestrated constituency-based climate events, regularly speaks at climate strikes, has used the Queen’s Speech debate to raise the issue and has made repeated calls on Government to treat climate change as a top priority.

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“Veterans must play the lead role in commemorations”- City MP issues callout to WW2 ex-service personnel

Shadow Defence Minister, Stephen Morgan MP has issued a callout to all WW2 veterans in a bid to ensure due recognition of their feats.

Mr Morgan has joined up with The British Legion in encouraging veterans to register their attendance to events marking the 75th anniversaries of VE and VJ Day, on the 8th May and 15th August.

Mr Morgan said:

“Victory in Europe Day and Victory over Japan Day will forever be milestones in the history of this nation.

As we approach the 75th anniversaries for these most significant days, it is essential that we reflect and remember the unfathomable achievements of those who sacrificed so much.

Central to that remembrance and commemoration process must be the veterans themselves. That is why I have joined the British Legion in calling on all WW2 veterans to take part in the events planned.”

Veterans can be of British, Commonwealth or Allied origin and all costs for their attendance will be met by The Royal British Legion and its partners. Registration closes for VE Day veterans on 17 February and for VJ Day veterans on 31 March.

Mr Morgan added:

“With the recent success of D-Day 75, that I am proud to say took place in Portsmouth, it has been made clear that veterans must play the lead role.

I commend The British Legion in working towards ensuring VE and VJ Day commemorations follow suit and look forward to joining others on the 8th May and 15th August in reflecting and remembering. “

Veterans can be of British, Commonwealth or Allied origin and all costs for their attendance will be met by The Royal British Legion and its partners.

Further information can be found here https://www.britishlegion.org.uk/get-involved/remembrance/remembrance-events

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City MP hits ground running with social enterprise GoodGym

Stephen Morgan MP praises work of city volunteers as he combined running shoes with a litter picker and joined local GoodGym representatives in Portsmouth.

The socially motivated running club, formed nearly two years ago in Portsmouth, seeks to combine fitness with community work.

Mr Morgan this weekend joined local volunteers removing litter from Portsmouth’s roadsides and pathways as part of the project based out of Fratton Community Centre.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“This community of runners, motivated by improving their local area, are doing outstanding work from reducing social isolation to keeping the area clean.

Their vision to keep the community fit while also improving Portsmouth is the pioneering spirit that this city needs.

I have had the opportunity to see first-hand the work of GoodGym and encourage others to get involved. Especially in community projects aiming to improve the wellbeing of our older community members.”

GoodGym currently operates in 57 areas and has proposals to start in 82 other places.

There are variations of run offered tailored to which kind of community action members want to take. ‘Mission Runs’ aim to help older community members with one off tasks, ‘Coach Runs’ are regular and will see a member meeting an isolated older person and ‘Group Runs’ help with community projects.

The Portsmouth South representative added:

“I look forward to continuing to spend time with other community members and the GoodGym team, keeping fit and making a difference.

I hope to see more people joining the movement and encourage people to pick up their running shoes and litter picker and head on down to the next event.”

To join GoodGym and find out more about their events in Portsmouth, please visit: https://www.goodgym.org/areas/portsmouth

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City MP votes to increase police officers in our neighbourhoods

Stephen Morgan MP has voted in favour of a motion that would have seen a greater number of police officers and the restoration of neighbourhood policing teams. The opposition day debate, which took place yesterday, aimed to address ten years of cuts to forces across the country including Hampshire.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“In Portsmouth we have seen the direct consequences of fewer police officers and more crime born out of government cuts to police numbers and local authority services.

In backing this motion, I voted with all Portsmouth people who have been affected by crime in mind.

The Government must take responsibility for taking over 20,000 police off our streets and not just restore these numbers but increase personnel in accordance with crime rates.”

Mr Morgan’s action comes amidst recent statistics painting a damning picture of crime in the UK.

Since 2010, the number of police officers each year has fallen, with a 12.4% decrease recorded in 2019 compared with 2019. Subsequently, hate crime has more than doubled and violent crime increased by 13,000 cases in that time.

Mr Morgan added:

“It is telling that Government opposed the Labour proposed motion to properly fund and resource our police force in Hampshire. I’ve long argued the current funding formula penalises Portsmouth and our constabulary.

To simply reinstate the officers the Tories took away is not an improvement, but a tokenistic gesture designed to detract attention from their poor policing record.

Portsmouth people and our dedicated police officers are bearing the brunt of less bobbies on the beat and more crime. I will continue to hold Government to account over their shameful record.”

For some time the city MP has been running a campaign to get more bobbies back on the beat to bring down crime. To show your support visit www.stephenmorgan.org.uk/police 

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Portsmouth MP continues call on Government to act following latest city high street casualty

Stephen Morgan MP has slammed Government inaction following yet another high street closure planned for Portsmouth’s high streets, this time Halifax bank on Palmerston Road.

Mr Morgan has raised specific concerns about the effect that this closure will have on older community members and small businesses.

Mr Morgan said:

“This Government is failing the nation’s high streets and with it, the people of Portsmouth. Already we have seen Knight & Lee put down its shutters for the last time and Debenhams disappear from Palmerston Road.

Now the imminent closure of Halifax bank will be to the detriment of our older community members who may prefer face to face transactions and small businesses, who are already under considerable strain.

I am in discussion with Lloyds Banking Group, who are the decision makers when it comes to the Halifax closure. I will be urging them to think very carefully about their proposals which is yet another decision putting our high streets at risk”.

Mr Morgan has long been taking action to support the high streets. He has created a support local campaign backing small business, hosted roundtable meetings with SMEs and is lobbying for business rate reform.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“Hampshire has already seen 1,600 shop closures in recent years affecting hundreds of local jobs and leaving high streets bare and neglected.

Experts warn that with closures of high street banks comes damaging consequences for independent shops due to decreased footfall.

The issue we are seeing is indicative of a bleak national picture born out of Government’s failure to address challenges faced by the high street. I will continue to make the case for action to bring our shopping areas back from the brink”

 

 

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City MP calls for “comprehensive, integrated Defence Strategy” during parliamentary debate

Recently appointed Shadow Defence Procurement Minister, Stephen Morgan MP called on Government to implement a wider Defence Industrial Strategy while closing a debate on helicopters in our armed forces.

Mr Morgan’s calls for a comprehensive strategy, including rotary aircrafts, follow his recent probes into the Government’s delays to Crowsnest Radar.

Mr Morgan said:

“As an MP honoured to represent the city hosting the Queen Elizabeth Class Carriers which will rely heavily on Merlin helicopter’s Crowsnest radar capability, it is essential that defence strategy includes wide reaching plans for rotary aircrafts.

I took the opportunity today as frontbench Shadow Minister closing the debate to call on Government to set out their plans for the Strategic Defence and Security Review.

It is imperative that in that review we prioritise building British and sovereign capability if we are to retain our operational advantage.”

The 322 rotary-wing aircrafts in the UK armed forces play a crucial role in defending national security. Roles include reconnaissance, troop transport, supply drops and radar capability.

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“We know that future air warfare will be increasingly complex, with significant technological advancements over the lifetime of a single rotary wing aircraft.

As threats evolve, we must evolve with them. And without a comprehensive Strategic Defence and Security Review, this will be deeply challenging.”