Pleasingly, local councils in England have been allocated a vital £125 million in funding to provide support for victims of domestic abuse and their children, including £1,498,174 for WSCC. This will help access life-saving support in safe accommodation, including advocacy, counselling and therapy in safe locations. More details are on my website.
In more wonderful news – we've now achieved the extraordinary feat of administering a total of 15 million vaccinations to the most vulnerable in the UK. I want to again thank every NHS worker and volunteer who were fundamental to this effort, as well as everyone who took up the offer to receive their 1st jab. There’s still a long way to go, but on February 22nd, the PM will outline how we will begin to lift restrictions.
I visited the Clair Hall vaccination site as we reached this milestone, where another 800 people were getting their first jab, bringing the total at the site to over 20,000 since opening. The total number of people who have now received a vaccine in Sussex is now over 400,000. It was a pleasure to thank the GPs, clinicians, the volunteers and support staff there and I will continue to monitor our local roll-out and update constituents on my socials and website.
The Home Secretary has announced she wants to toughen laws on pet theft. I am continuing to receive emails from constituents on this issue, especially those in Burgess Hill, who have reported the presence of a suspicious grey van. Sussex Police’s Rural Crime Team (RCT) is working closely with partner agencies, gathering intelligence and highlighting crime prevention among the dog-owning community, in order to stop these terrible crimes.
Last year, I asked people across the constituency to nominate people they thought had gone above and beyond in helping others as we battled the first peak of Covid. I’ll be doing a virtual celebration of their hard work and achievements. Lockdowns and tiers have meant coming out to meet everyone have sadly not been possible and we are now making this a virtual event. Time and time again we have seen our community pulling together to help others, from ensuring food and medicines were delivered, to those volunteering at our local vaccination sites now. These wonderful people encapsulate the great community spirit we have here in Mid Sussex.
We all continue to be inspired by Captain Sir Tom Moore, and another true, local star is Emily, a young girl from Bolnore, who is running 84KM over the course of February, to raise money for local charity "Time 4 Children", whose trained volunteers do wonderful work in supporting emotionally vulnerable children who are 4-12 years old. You can support here; https://localgiving.org/fundraising/Emilys3kaday/