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Crawley MP celebrates 70 year partnership between Macmillan & NHS

Henry Smith MP is the Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer and says he’s been ‘struck by the stories I’ve heard from blood cancer patients about the important support that Macmillan provide’.

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Henry Smith MP speaking in the Westminster Hall debate he secured and led on NHS blood cancer care on 17th January 2018.

Henry Smith MP showed his support for the ongoing partnership between Macmillan Cancer Support and the NHS by attending a reception held by Macmillan at Speaker’s House in the Palace of Westminster.

The reception provided a unique opportunity to mark the 70th birthday of the National Health Service and celebrate Macmillan’s role in supporting the NHS throughout its history.

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The reception brought together parliamentarians, health and care professionals, people living with cancer and cancer charities not only to celebrate the NHS turning 70, but also to discuss the future challenges facing the health service.

Henry said:

“70 years of the NHS is a significant and historic milestone. I was delighted to attend Macmillan’s event, which presented us with an opportunity both to reflect on the amazing work that the NHS does and celebrate the momentous and successful partnership between Macmillan and the NHS.

“Joining these celebrations and being able to share Macmillan’s birthday message was important, but what was significant was the opportunity to speak about the challenges which lie ahead for the NHS and how best to deal with them.

“As Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer I’ve been struck by the stories I’ve heard from blood cancer patients about the important support that Macmillan provide.

“This is a watershed moment for our NHS and for the future of cancer care across the UK. Announcing additional funding is a step in the right direction, but what is so important is using the resources available in the most effective way. The Government should work closely with Macmillan to help create a health system able to effectively support people living with cancer at the time they most need it.”

Macmillan’s reception offered an opportunity to discuss the way in which the Government’s new long-term funding settlement for the NHS can be implemented to future-proof cancer care for the millions of people living with the disease, who urgently deserve improved emotional and practical support to live life as fully as they can.

Henry Smith

Crawley MP Henry Smith condemns Brexit uncertainty

Henry Smith MP has spoken out against the uncertainty and democratic damage of Brexit not being delivered and in Parliament last week called for the instruction given by the people of Crawley and the UK to leave the EU not to be delayed beyond 29th March 2019.

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Speaking in the House Of Commons on Friday 15th Feb, Mr Smith partook in a debate and made his strong feeling very clear.

Here are some of the highlights of what he said:

“It’s been three years since the Brexit referendum was called. With exit day of 29th March only weeks away, I urge the Prime Minister to take a robust approach to the continued negotiations with the EU.

“One of the biggest reasons for the current uncertainty is the continued calls for another vote of the people. Crawley residents – and indeed voters across the UK – have already spoken clearly and it’s up to the Government to carry out their will.

“The previous day I asked Theresa May at Prime Minister’s Questions for assurances over our departure on the date set out in law of 29th March 2019 – the people’s Brexit must not be denied.”

He then followed it up about Crawley itself:

“The message I get is as follows. Just the other day, I was walking down Tilgate shopping parade in my constituency, and as is typically the case, someone came up to me and wanted to know about the current Brexit debate in Parliament.

“They said, “Why aren’t we getting on with the decision we made two and a half years ago?” That is a compelling argument.”

Mr Smith continued on the subject of Brexit uncertainty and the countries relationship with Europe:

“We have heard this afternoon calls for a so-called people’s vote. I would argue that we had a people’s vote in 2016. We have also heard calls for an extension of article 50, to delay our departure from the European Union.

“We have heard from those Members concern about the uncertainty of Brexit. The one thing that will maintain uncertainty is questioning the democratic decision that was taken by holding a second referendum.

“That would certainly do a lot to damage our democracy and prolong uncertainty, as would a delay to article 50, and that is before we even get into the issues of whether the remaining 27 members of the EU would allow article 50 to be extended and, if article 50 were to be extended beyond July, of EU elections.”

“Yes, we absolutely should be seeking and honouring a deep and close relationship with our neighbours and allies in Europe, but the trouble with a customs union, which Labour Members advocate, is that it would prevent us from doing the global free trade deals that, in a world that is getting smaller, are key to our prosperity.

“The key to this country’s future prosperity is our unique global links, and being a conduit for that thanks to our proximity to Europe. We must be robust in the ongoing negotiations, and I support the Prime Minister in continuing them.

“I have never known an EU negotiation that did not go down to the last moment, and I therefore remain optimistic about our future. For goodness’ sake, we should be more optimistic as a House and country, because our best years are ahead.” r

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