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Henry Smith

Crawley MP calls on County Leader to ‘re-think’ cuts to Housing Related Support

Henry Smith MP says the ‘proposal to now end grant funding to this charity is a false economy’.



Crawley Open House, Stephenson Way, Crawley.

Last week West Sussex County Council published its Forward Plan where it recommended ceasing funding to the Crawley-located Open House homeless centre.

This led to outrage in the local area, as the support for Crawley Open House came flooding in.

More news: ‘We simply do not have the money’, West Sussex Council claim after horror over cuts

A petition started by the Leader of Crawley Borough Council, Peter Lamb, has now received over 5,200 signatures as residents fight to save the twenty-four bed hostel for Crawley and West Sussex’s homeless.

The cuts would mean Crawley Open House losing a contract worth around £250,000, but West Sussex County Council say: “We simply do not have the money to continue delivering the services we currently deliver in the same way”.

Now, Crawley MP Henry Smith has spoken out in support of Crawley Open House. He has called on the Leader of West Sussex County Council, Louise Goldsmith, to ‘re-think’ the cuts, labelling their proposal as a ‘false economy’.

Crawley MP Henry Smith.

In response Crawley MP, Henry Smith, said:

“Crawley Open House is one of a kind with a fine history in providing help and support to homeless people from the local area in addition to those arriving from elsewhere looking for work.

“Whilst not the local housing authority – that is Crawley Borough Council’s responsibility – I’m grateful for the years of discretionary funding that West Sussex County Council has provided Open House. I recognise they need to ensure efficient spending on behalf of local taxpayers but I think their proposal to now end grant funding to this charity is a false economy.

“Last week I called the County Leader, Louise Goldsmith, to re-think this suggested budget reduction.

“In Parliament this week I’ve called on the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities & Local Government to allocate part of the Government’s new £100 million rough sleeping reduction initiative funding to support Open House and the effort to tackle homelessness more generally in Crawley.”

Henry Smith’s letter dated 31 August 2018, to the Leader of West Sussex County Council, Louise Goldsmith.

Henry Smith

Henry Smith MP: Stronger sentences for cruelty to animals

In his article this week Henry Smith MP talks about stronger sentences for cruelty to animals.



Henry Smith MP

When I’m out and about listening to people in Crawley, one issue which tends to unite those usually on differing sides of the political spectrum is the necessity to increase the punishment for those who hurt animals needlessly.

Recently in Westminster I was pleased to meet with Battersea – the dog and cat rescue centre – to reiterate my support for Government proposals to extend the current maximum penalty for animal cruelty offences, specified under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, tenfold from six months imprisonment to five years.

This change would provide the justice system with the flexibility to treat the most shocking acts of animal cruelty much more seriously than it can at present. 

At Battersea’s event alongside a host of other MPs, we signed the organisation’s pledge board to highlight the strength of parliamentary support on this issue.

The Government already has a strong record on animal welfare and protection of animals. From the introduction of mandatory CCTV in slaughterhouses – a campaign I led in Parliament – to banning the use of wild animals in travelling circuses, it is right that action has been taken.

Other measures I have supported have been the introduction of the world’s toughest bans on ivory sales to help stop the poaching of elephants, and the banning of commercial third party sales of puppies and kittens in England to end the terrible welfare conditions found in puppy farming.

I was pleased to serve as Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Animal Welfare in both the 2015 and 2017 parliaments. As Groups such as this one are in the process of being reconstituted following the General Election in December, I look forward to playing my part in this APPG’s work in the months and years ahead.

Henry Smith MP
Crawley Constituency

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