We’re facing huge challenges this year, amid a pandemic that is still infecting our people and damaging our economy. But we’re not just going to fight fires - we’re getting on with making South Yorkshire stronger, greener and fairer. Here are my priorities.Read more
From this week, the Government are introducing new national lockdown measures. I know how frustrating and disheartening this news will be after an incredibly challenging year, but these restrictions are necessary to save lives and to prevent our NHS from becoming overwhelmed. We’ve seen alarming increases in cases in recent weeks, with rates of infection and hospitalisation now rising extremely quickly in every region of the UK. The new variant of the virus is 50% to 70% more infectious and transmissible. Hundreds of people are losing their lives on a daily basis. Every day without decisive action means more will die and our hospitals will be unable to care for those who are desperately ill. It’s devastating for families and businesses to start the New Year with tighter restrictions – but this is the only way we will save lives; protect our NHS; and get through the toughest winter we have ever faced.Read more
**Updated 8 March 2021**
The Coronavirus represents the most serious public health crisis any of us have faced. We will get through this with the solidarity, courage, initiative and resilience that epitomises our coalfield communities here in Barnsley and South Yorkshire.
The Government are introducing new national measures to save lives and livelihoods and protect our NHS. Full guidance on what you can and cannot do can be found here.
From 8 March 2021, restrictions will start to gradually be eased providing that the Government's tests on the vaccine rollout and effectiveness, reducing rates of hospitalisation and the impact of new variants are met. You can find out more about the roadmap out of lockdown here.Read more
As 2020 draws to a close we can all reflect on this most difficult and challenging of years. There’s no doubt that this year has been incredibly hard for us all – families kept apart, communities tested like never before, loved ones lost before their time. This year’s festive period has been bittersweet for many Barnsley families.Read more
Commenting on the vote in Parliament on the Prime Minister’s Brexit Deal, Dan Jarvis MP said:
“Understandably, Brexit hasn’t been at the top of the political agenda in 2020. Covid has transformed our daily lives and battered our businesses. The OBR forecast 2.6 million jobs will be lost as a result of the pandemic and we are facing the deepest recession in Europe. Our communities in South Yorkshire are bearing the brunt of this disease and we will be living with the economic fallout for years to come.Read more
This year will be a festive period like no other. Many local residents will be celebrating virtually, coming together with family, friends and loved ones in spirit rather than in person; colleagues will be swapping the big gatherings and office parties for catch-ups over Zoom. The Government have announced that there will be a relaxation to restrictions to enable gatherings on Christmas Day. Although it’s only natural that families will want to spend time together and celebrate after this hugely difficult year, we should all be mindful that Covid hasn’t gone away and make sure that the decisions we take when it comes to seeing older relatives and those with underlying health conditions bear that risk in mind. It’s especially important that we all keep on doing the basics right: observing social distancing, washing hands, self-isolating and getting tested if symptoms develop. The very last thing we need is a disastrous third wave in January, further endangering lives and livelihoods, right at the moment that a vaccine is being rolled out.Read more
Yesterday, the Government announced that South Yorkshire will be in Tier 3 restrictions from 2 December. I’ve been clear that we must not stay there a moment longer than we have to, which is why I’m pushing for a clear roadmap out of restrictions and for fairer economic support package for our residents and businesses. This week’s Spending Review was a golden opportunity to provide that immediate support; deliver on the Government’s manifesto commitment to level up the North of England; and reward those workers who have kept our country going. It was an opportunity that the Chancellor failed to take.Read more
The Coronavirus pandemic has hit Barnsley and South Yorkshire hard. We’ve seen worryingly high rates of infection, hospitalisation and residents losing their lives. Our regional economy has been ravaged. The level of people claiming unemployment-related benefits is now higher than any time since the mid-1990s when we were still in the aftermath of the pit closures. As I set out in the debate I led in Parliament last week, the brutal reality is that the North is now on course for levelling down, not levelling up. However, we have the raw materials at our fingertips to create a better economy, not just for our region, but for the whole of the UK.Read more
I know how difficult and challenging the current situation is for businesses, traders, freelancers and self-employed workers who have not been eligible for government support since the pandemic began.Read more
There’s no getting away from the fact that this year’s period of Remembrance will be like no other before. This wretched disease means we can’t be together in person, but it is now more important than ever that we are together in spirit.
I am always left inspired by the reverence Yorkshire shows for our Armed Forces community. Here in Barnsley, thousands of people turn out every year – rain or shine – to pay their respects to the service and sacrifice others have made. It is a lesson in community solidarity and its absence will be sorely felt.Read more