Parents need more help with the costs of childcare

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I’m campaigning to expand free childcare for working parents with 3 and4 year olds from 15 to 25 hours per week because the cost of a nursery place is now at its highest in history.

A typical parent in Ashfield, doing a part-time job would have to work from Monday until Thursday just to cover the costs of childcare. On top of this, 578 Sure Start Centres have closed nationally since 2010, despite promises from the Prime Minister this wouldn’t happen.

I know parents in Kirkby and Huthwaite are up in arms about plans to withdraw services at Sunny Days at the Summit Centre and Huthwaite Childcare.

If parents want to tell me what this means to them please drop me a line on gloria.depiero.mp@parliament.uk so I can raise it with the PM.

I understand Nottinghamshire County Council are in talks to secure a replacement provider at the Summit Centre and will keep you in touch when I get more info.

As the local MP I like to know how well Ashfield does in comparison to other areas and when Cancer Research UK recently sent over new stats, it made for interesting reading.

I was angry to discover that our area does worse than the national average when it comes to waiting for a diagnostic test and worse than the national average when it comes to getting referred to a specialist.

This isn’t good enough and I’ve written to our local CCG to find out how they plan to improve.

If anyone has been affected on a personal level by this then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Catching cancer early is crucial and the earlier it is diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatment.

Last week I met with Brinsley residents who were concerned about losing green belt land and Kirkby Residents’ Greenbelt Association contacted me on twitter to raise their concerns about development too.

I’ve previously met with representatives from the group and it’s vital their concerns are listened to.

Planning goes wrong when people feel things are being done to them rather than with them.

The government have relaxed planning laws but there must still be public consultation.

I have no vote on local planning but if any residents would like me to facilitate a meeting with Ashfield District Council I’m more than happy to do so.

Finally, I do sometimes wonder what goes on at the HMRC. Peter from Sutton had months of problems with them regarding unpaid taxes, endless phone calls, letters and emails, all of which caused him a significant amount of distress.

After contacting my office and one letter to HMRC, he had a full apology and £50 cheque compensation.

Are you having problems with the taxman?

Drop me a line and I’ll do my best to sort.

Gloria de Piero, MP