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Henry Smith MP: supporting England and Soccer Aid

In his article this week, Crawley MP Henry Smith talks about UNICEF, and how Soccer Aid helps it to support children in some of the poorest parts of the world.



When England’s World Cup campaign begins in just over a week’s time, the eyes of the world will be on one of Crawley’s own in the England dug-out.

My best wishes to Gareth Southgate – who grew up in our town, attended Pound Hill Junior and Hazelwick Schools, and married at Worth Church – and his team. Come on England!

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Before the tournament starts, the biennial Soccer Aid game takes place on Sunday (10th June) at Old Trafford, where a team of England celebrities and football legends take on a side from the Rest of the World. This is all in aid of UNICEF, who supply vaccines reaching 40 per cent of the world’s children, deliver 80 per cent of the world’s life-saving food, and have provided cleaner water and sanitation for families in more than 107 countries.

Over the last 12 years, £24 million has been raised through Soccer Aid to help UNICEF support children in some of the poorest parts of the world. Assistance has included 13.8 million people with improved drinking water and 11.3 million getting better sanitation.

Donations to UNICEF as part of this year’s Soccer Aid will be matched by the UK Government (up to the value of £5 million) to support UNICEF’s work for children in Swaziland and Lesotho.

In Parliament I continue to call for greater transparency in the international aid system, and recently questioned the International Development Secretary in the House of Commons over the action of the UK Government to ensure that other countries pay their fair share towards international development.

Henry Smith MP
Crawley Constituency

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Henry Smith

Henry Smith MP: Unemployment at its lowest level for over 4 decades

The new figures show that unemployment is at its lowest since 1975, and the number of young people out of work has fallen by over 447,000 in the last 8 years.



Henry Smith MP has welcomed the latest figures which show that the number of people out of work is at a record low.

In Crawley, the number of people who are unemployed has fallen by 1,365 – a 59 per cent drop – since 2010.

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Employment has increased in the south east of England, with 4,552,127 people in work – an increase of 360,127 more people in work since 2010.

The Crawley MP has welcomed the new figures, which show that unemployment is at its lowest since 1975 and that the number of young people out of work has fallen by over 447,000 in the last eight years.

Henry said:

“Unemployment continues to fall to record lows. Thanks to the Government’s welfare reforms, more people are being helped into work – and through the modern Industrial Strategy, businesses are getting backing to create jobs.

“That means more people benefit from getting up every day to a good job, and more people have the financial security of a regular pay packet to provide for themselves and their families.”

The Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, Rt Hon Esther McVey MP, said:

“With the unemployment rate falling further to just 4 per cent, and youth unemployment down over 45 per cent since 2010, school leavers this week can look forward to a growing jobs market, improving the prospects for their future careers.

“In fact the UK’s vibrant jobs market is benefiting people across the board. Record rates of ethnic minority people in work also show that more families across our society are benefiting from the security of a job, with wages also on the increase.

“We have some of the most creative, innovative and hard-working young people in the world and this summer I’ve been urging them to take on a summer job, gaining ‘soft skills’ – or as I call them, essential skills – for their future careers.”

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