Baby Loss

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:37 pm on 13th October 2016.

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Photo of Will Quince Will Quince Conservative, Colchester 12:37 pm, 13th October 2016

Yes, of course I agree. I will come to that point later. After the debate in November on bereavement care in maternity units, my hon. Friend the Member for Eddisbury and I were taken aback by the number of people across the country who got in touch and shared their stories with us. We sat down—this was during proceedings on a Finance Bill, so it was about 1.30 am —with the then Minister with responsibility for care quality, my right hon. Friend Ben Gummer, my hon. Friend Victoria Prentis, who is not quite in her place, and Mrs Hodgson. We thought, “This is a far bigger issue than just bereavement suites. The whole subject of baby loss needs addressing.” We were pretty surprised that there was not already a group looking at the issue.

The all-party parliamentary group was formed in February, and I am very proud of the work that we have done so far, working with amazing charities across this country. I cannot name some of them, because I would have to name them all. From large charities that do the most amazing work and fundraising, through to the groups made up of just a handful of people who get together in a local pub or village hall and knit really small pieces of clothing for babies who are premature and sadly stillborn, it means so much that so many people across this country want to play their part and make a difference.

I cannot let this speech go by without referring to the support of Mr Speaker, who is not in the Chamber at the moment, not just for this campaign, but in kindly allowing us to use his apartments for the reception yesterday, and during Baby Loss Awareness Week. Yesterday, which would and should have been my son’s second birthday, he called me to ask a Prime Minister’s question on this subject, and so raise the issue in front of millions of people and the country’s media.