ST David’S Day

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:31 pm on 28th February 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Tonia Antoniazzi Tonia Antoniazzi Labour, Gower 12:31 pm, 28th February 2019

I thank my hon. Friend for his contribution. The situation is absolutely a disaster. I am particularly upset about the case of Bailey Williams and many others, including constituents of mine. It is one thing to change the law; it is another not to make it work. While the law has changed, these obstacles to access are still there, and I will continue Paul’s work to ensure that children and constituents such as ours can be prescribed this very misunderstood drug. I pass on my love and best wishes to Sam, the rest of Paul’s family and his friends and let them know that he will always have a place in my heart, and that I would like to thank him for all his support and help.

Standing here and opening this debate makes me extremely proud to be a Welsh MP. Since I retook Gower in 2017 for Welsh Labour following a short hiccup, I have dedicated myself to serving my constituents, helping the most vulnerable in society and making sure that those who usually do not have a voice are listened to. My office works tirelessly on behalf of people who are being treated appallingly—who have continuing problems with personal independence payments, with universal credit, state pension inequality and immigration. The list goes on and I will continue to fight for them.

Last year, the St David’s Day debate was delayed by the severe weather caused by the beast from the east, but this week we have been basking in some glorious sunshine—maybe not today, but we have been. While the weather is enjoyable, it is a worrying indicator of the drastically changing climate that threatens the world. The Government have set targets for reducing carbon emissions and increasing the use of renewable energy to combat climate change following legislation from the EU, but as we have seen, they are not living up to those promises, particularly in Wales.

Since I have been in this place, we have seen the collapse of two major energy projects in Wales: the hugely ambitious tidal lagoon project in Swansea bay, and the Wylfa nuclear plant in the constituency of my hon. Friend Albert Owen. Does this not just show a disregard for the pressing issue of climate change and demonstrate the disdain that the Tories have for Wales? What commitment can the Secretary of State make to the people of Wales on how the UK Government will reduce the carbon footprint of Wales to protect our future generations? As a former teacher, I think that seeing pupils going out to protest about climate change is inspirational, and I give them my full support.

While we all look forward to really celebrating St David’s Day tomorrow, we know that the celebrations have been ongoing all week. Just yesterday saw a celebration at No. 10 that was apparently well attended. [Interruption.] I say “apparently”, as we have only social media to go on, as the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State had forgotten to invite Welsh Labour and Plaid Cymru MPs to the event. [Interruption.] Come on, we only make up four fifths of all Welsh MPs. I hope they had fun and did not forget to mention all the funding and support that the Welsh Labour Government have given to many of the companies that were there. I will welcome an invitation next year.

Support for many of our services has not been protected by the Tories. As we have seen and heard from our constituents, since 2010 police funding cuts across the UK and in Wales have had a huge effect on the work of the police.