23 January 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Davey on Houthi strikes: Vital Parliament has its say
  • Simon Clarke and Sunak soap opera: A fourth PM without an election would be “ludicrous”
  • Operation Onyx One Year On – 1,400 Met Officers Still Under Investigation for Sexual Abuse
  • Welsh Lib Dems urge Welsh Government to make good on promise to “prioritise care not profit”
  • Mid and West Wales MS Jane Dodds calls on Welsh Government to protect businesses from floods

Davey on Houthi strikes: Vital Parliament has its say

Responding to the latest set of strikes on the Houthi rebels, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said:

Liberal Democrats are concerned about the Houthis’ attacks in the Red Sea and so we support the case for limited strikes, so long as they remain limited.

However, it is absolutely vital that Parliament has an opportunity to have its say, via a debate and a vote. The Prime Minister has so far failed to grant either. It is deeply disappointing that elected representatives are being bypassed on an issue as important as military action.

Simon Clarke and Sunak soap opera: A fourth PM without an election would be “ludicrous”

Responding to Simon Clarke calling on Rishi Sunak to be replaced as Prime Minister, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader Daisy Cooper MP said:

It is utterly ludicrous that the Conservative Party is even discussing installing a fourth Prime Minister without giving voters a say.

The Conservatives are once again fighting like rats in a sack while families face soaring bills and an NHS crisis.

People are sick and tired of this never-ending Conservative Party soap opera. It’s time for Rishi Sunak to give voters the chance to put an end to this farce and call a general election.

Operation Onyx One Year On – 1,400 Met Officers Still Under Investigation for Sexual Abuse

1,409 Metropolitan police officers remain under investigation for sexual abuse as part of Operation Onyx according to information obtained by the Liberal Democrats.

Operation Onyx was commissioned by the Met following public outcry over the appalling case of David Carrick, who raped and sexually assaulted twelve women over 17 years while serving as a Met officer.

The Operation consists of a review of all completed sexual offence or domestic abuse cases from the last 10 years involving serving Met officers or staff where the allegation did not result in a dismissal at the time and commenced in January 2022.

According to the data requested by Liberal Democrat London Assembly Member Caroline Pidgeon of the 1,636 officers identified by Operation Onyx, 136 have now left the Met through resignation, retirement or dismissal, while 91 have been assessed as requiring no further action.

However, one year after the operation began, the vast majority of officers identified (the remaining 1,409 individuals) remain under live investigation and are being “risk managed”, “prioritised for re-investigation” or being referred into the Met’s vetting review process, named Operation Assure.

Commenting on the latest figures, Liberal Democrat London Assembly Member & Police and Crime Spokesperson Caroline Pidgeon said:

These figures only go to show the scale of the level of reform that is needed at the Met.

The Baroness Casey review should have been a watershed moment for rebuilding trust in the Met, especially among women and girls, yet with over 1,400 officers still under investigation for sexual abuse, progress has clearly been limited so far.

Based on the number of cases that reached a conclusion in the last year, it would take a further six years at the current rate to clear all remaining 1,409 cases. This simply isn’t fast enough.

It is vital that the reform efforts of the Met are properly resourced, including by the Mayor of London in his upcoming annual budget.

Welsh Lib Dems urge Welsh Government to make good on promise to “prioritise care not profit”

Today in the Senedd, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have urged the Welsh Government to make good on their promise on removing private profit from looked after children’s care.

According to the Radical Reform report, fully transforming the care market may take up to 10 to 15 years. Providing that local authorities are receiving sufficient capital support to build the necessary residential care provisions and train fresh staff.

Previously the Welsh Government had committed to providing revenue funding of £68 million over the next three years, however no updates have been made since the Draft Budget announcement in December.

The party have urged the Welsh Labour Government to follow through on their commitment towards reforming the care system, removing profit-making and instead prioritising the needs of the most vulnerable.

Commenting, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds MS said:

We all share a personal commitment towards care experienced children and ensuring that their needs are being prioritised.

It is vital that we take steps towards creating a care system focused on our most vulnerable, one that prioritises care not profit.

To their credit the Welsh Government have in the past committed to removing private profit from looked after children’s care. But since the Draft Budget announcement in December, we’ve heard very little.

My message to the Welsh Labour Government is clear, do not let this promise fall, like so many others they have made, under the category of “unfulfilled”.

Whilst it is vital that we remove profit making, it is also important that we beforehand offer sufficient non-profit options to those working in the sector.

Without sufficient funding being provided to local authorities, we risk creating a black hole in the care system that could prove to be devastating to the most vulnerable in our society.

Mid and West Wales MS Jane Dodds calls on Welsh Government to protect businesses from floods

Today in the Senedd, the Mid and West Wales MS Jane Dodds has called on the Welsh Government to step in and help protect local businesses from flooding.

The Lizzie’s Barn Sanctuary, a small family-run dog rescue centre, has faced steadily worsening flooding over recent years, with 43 flood events on her property last year alone.

Jane Dodds MS has now urged the Welsh Government to step in and ensure that residents whose properties are at risk of flooding.

Commenting, Mid and West Wales MS Jane Dodds said:

This recent winter has seen Wales being battered by what seems to be a constant barrage of storms, with the most recent Storm Isha causing extensive flooding across the country.

Flooding is indiscriminate in who it targets and without funding being made available to help prevent flood events, we are at risk of seeing thousands of people losing their properties as the weather inevitably worsens.

One of these people at risk of losing their property to flooding is a constituent of mine who runs the Lizzie’s Barn Sanctuary, a dog rescue centre that has faced steadily worsening flooding over recent years.

The worsening flooding conditions have inevitably put the lives of the most vulnerable dogs at risk, forcing hazardous boat evacuations that have no doubt added further stress on the family-orientated team at the sanctuary.

The owner of the sanctuary told me how she feels utterly neglected and shocked that her persistent flood-prone property has not warranted any form of protective measures or compensation from the relevant authorities.

As the climate crisis worsens, extreme weather patterns will become increasingly more frequent and with that flooding will turn into almost a regular occurrence for many.

By taking steps to ensure that there exists a robust framework for Risk Management Authorities, one which outlines their responsibilities and helps empower residents to push for the actions needed to safeguard their homes and livelihoods, we can ensure that at-risk properties are kept safe and dry.

We cannot afford to react to flooding in the same old manner we have always done, we must be proactive and prepared.

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This entry was posted in London, News, Press releases and Wales.
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