It’s been wonderful being out in the constituency with everything looking so beautiful and festive as we all get ready for the Christmas weekend. I do hope you have been able to finish off your Christmas shopping safely and perhaps support our wonderful local and independent shops.
I do think this time of year, more so than ever, is also really one for reflection and great appreciation. I want to thank everyone still busy working across our NHS, Fire and Rescue, Police, and wider public services on call this season, who’ll be saving lives and keeping the country going over the festive weekend. After working relentlessly over the past two years, this continued commitment shows the very best of humanity.
I know it’s been an extra stressful couple of weeks for everyone as Omnicom has reared its head. I know it’s been a worrying last couple of weeks for all of us, but we need everyone to continue playing their part, and remember to get your crucial 1st, 2nd or booster vaccine jabs! The wonderful vaccination teams and volunteers at Clair Hall have added thousands more appointments to book centrally with the NHS and on their local site.
This year has seen a number of key positive achievements which I do just want to mention as they may have been missed in the melee. On our vaccination roll-out, which showed this country and our NHS at our very best, our global leadership on climate change with COP26 and our landmark Environment Act, the remarkable economic and jobs recovery from the pandemic which disproved early forecasts and our fantastic trade agreements with countries across the world, showing the green shoots of our vision of a Global Britain.
Personally, I couldn’t finish without mentioning the Kickstart Scheme, which I have been incredibly proud work to lead on as the Minister of Employment again this year, through which over 112,000 young people have started jobs in amazing sectors. I also recently launched a new report on Menopause Impact on Employment. Before Christmas, I caught up with the local DWP team again at Haywards Heath JCP and heard about their wider outreach at BHTC and the Bentswood Hub. They’re also helping many of our Afghan friends resettle and find work. I could not be prouder of our Plan for Jobs and how we are helping people at any age or career stage progress every day.
As I always say, Mid Sussex is such a beautiful and special place to live, and I continue to be incredibly proud and grateful to represent you all. I wish you a safe and Merry Christmas as we look forward to a Happier New Year.