Heidi Allen on child refugees

calais17:45 Tuesday 26th April 2016
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

CHRIS MANN: One of the other big things you’ve been doing at the moment of course is your work with refugees.
CHRIS MANN: Trying to get the Government to agree to take more. Now that got blocked.
HEIDI ALLEN: Well yes and no. We had an announcement from the Government on Thursday/Friday last week that they would take 3,000 more, principally children and associated family members, so up to a maximum of 3,000 from the region. And that was a direct result of the fact that this amendment was coming back from the Lords this week. And that I think did help to stem the rebellion if you like. So ultimately that’s great news. We’re taking 3,000 more. But I’m still concerned about the child refugees who are in Europe, and that announcement didn’t do anything at all to help with that.
CHRIS MANN: So what can you do?
HEIDI ALLEN: Well it’s not over as they say. The Lords will be looking at it again tonight. Ping-pong, you’ll have heard the phrase.
HEIDI ALLEN: So we’ve pinged it back for one final time to the Lords tonight, who will look at the result of the Commons vote last night, and I believe Lord Dubs is tabling a slightly wider amendment that doesn’t have this magic 3,000 number associated with it. And I’m feeling pretty confident it might get through, in which case it’s most likely we’ll get to debate on it again next week. And I think because .. you know, if we get the wording right, something that the Government can be happy with and MPs can be happy with, then I think there’s still room for us to bring some more children in.
CHRIS MANN: Heidi, thank you so much. Heidi Allen there, the Conservative MP for South Cambridgeshire.


Cross-party resistance in Cambridgeshire to Government welfare reforms

“But basically there’s a test; you have to reach a certain number of points. She got ten points; you have to get twelve points to qualify for the Motability Scheme. And this is quite clearly happening on a massive scale across the country, because there are a series of MPs standing up with similar heartbreaking accounts.”

walking_with_sticks17:05 Wednesday 24th February 2016
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

CHRIS MANN: Government plans to limit welfare for some disabled people have been given the go-ahead despite objections from some Conservative MPs, including the South Cambridgeshire MP Heidi Allen. She spoke out against the planned tax credit cuts last night, and attacked Ministers who are looking to reduce the Employment Support Allowance for disabled people by up to £30 a week. This is what she had to say in the Commons.
HEIDI ALLEN: Anyone who has beaten cancer must surely burst with desire to return to a normal life, and are unlikely to want to be labelled as a cancer sufferer for any longer than they absolutely must be. From 2017 in the region of 270 disabled people alone in my constituency of South Cambridgeshire would stand to lose £30 or 29% of their weekly income, if we accept this Bill in its original form, and ignore the Lords. For these people I need to see more detail of the contents of the White Paper, and hear about the financial support too that will be made available before I can fully support the Government. If we don’t get this right, we will damage not jut the employment prospects and well-being of these vulnerable claimants, but also our reputation and our trust amongst the electorate. And to secure my trust, I need to believe in that White Paper and that £100 million is going to go some way towards those people. That is my warning shot to Government. Today, I will not support them. Today I may abstain, but only for today. Let’s get the detail right. Let’s be a Government of sweeping strategic change, but also let’s be one with the compassion and the dexterity to look after the little man too.
CHRIS MANN: That’s Heidi Allen talking in the Commons last night, and she joins us live from there now. Heidi hello to you. Hello Heidi
HEIDI ALLEN: Hello. Can you hear me?
CHRIS MANN: Yes I can now. Thank you.
HEIDI ALLEN: Hi Chris. Sorry.
CHRIS MANN: “A warning shot”, and talking about the reputation and the trust of Government. Tough words.
HEIDI ALLEN: Well because in my heart I wanted to vote very much against, and that to be honest when I went into the Chamber before I made my speech that was my intention And talking to a couple of colleagues, it became clear that this White Paper could potentially .. that the Government has still to publish .. could potentially give us a better solution, and that I would have possibly some influence over it, if I abstained rather than voting against. So it was a warning shot. It was kind of a last chance ‘let me be involved’ or if you don’t then I will certainly go against the Government.
CHRIS MANN: Well the political chattering classes are all excited about the EU ..
CHRIS MANN: .. and the referendum that is to come at the moment. But perhaps people in the street, ordinary folk, are more concerned about issues like this, and welfare cuts which are hurting many people it appears.
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Heidi Allen on tax credits social media and the housing crisis in Cambridge

heidi_allen_twitter08:24 Friday 23rd October 2015
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

DOTTY MCLEOD: It has been a very busy week for South Cambridgeshire’s Conservative MP Heidi Allen. Her maiden parliamentary speech on tax credits drew praise from all sides for its compassionate tone to those who will be affected by cuts. But equally it drew criticism from those who say her voting record doesn’t match with the sentiments she expressed. Here’s a quick taste of her speech.
HEIDI ALLEN: As these proposals stand too many people will be adversely affected. Something must give. For those of us proud enough to call ourselves compassionate Conservatives, it must not be the backs of the working families we purport to serve.
DOTTY MCLEOD: Well Heidi Allen joins me now. Hello there Heidi.
HEIDI ALLEN: Good morning Dotty.
DOTTY MCLEOD: So the charge is that you said one thing, you said that changing and cutting tax credits is a bad idea. But then you voted along with it anyway. How do you plead?
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One week on – the parties find their feet

talks17:39 Friday 15th May 2015
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

CHRIS MANN: They say a week is a long time in politics. Since the election results were announced last Friday we’ve had twists and turns, ups and downs, from all of the political parties. And our political reporter Hannah Olsson has been trying to keep up. She joins me in the studio now. It’s been quite a week, and today, well, the drama of the Labour leadership contest took another strange turn.
HANNAH OLSSON: It certainly did. Now since Ed Miliband announced he was resigning as Labour Party Leader after to his party’s disappointing defeat in the General Election last week, contenders have been throwing their hats in the ring. We’ve had Chuka Umunna, Yvette Cooper, Andy Burnham, Liz Kendall and Mary Creagh, all saying they wanted to enter the race. But then today Chuka Umunna surprised us all by announcing he was withdrawing. The reason he gave in a statement was that he wasn’t comfortable with the level of pressure and scrutiny that came with being a Leadership candidate. Now Chuka Umunna is a polished media performer, and was seen as a real contender for the job, so the announcement will come as a big shock for many people within the Labour Party. But former labour Leader Lord Kinnock says he has probably done the right thing.
LORD KINNOCK: If he felt in his soul that he wasn’t prepared to subject himself, and more importantly his family, to the kind of attention which is fairly typical sadly these days, he has done absolutely the right thing. There’s no point at all in inflicting avoidable unnecessary misery on those that you love most.
HANNAH OLSSON: Candidates must secure nominations from 34 colleagues, that’s roughly 15% of the Labour party’s MPs, by 15th June, to make it onto those ballot papers. So we may see more twists and turns in the race before then.
CHRIS MANN: Let’s move on to talk about UKIP. Yesterday I spoke to Patrick O’Flynn, who had very publicly criticised the party’s Leader Nigel Farage, calling him ‘thin skinned and aggressive’. Has there been more reaction to that?
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Jonathan Djanogly on immigration and UKIP

11:22 Wednesday 4th March 2015
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

PAUL STAINTON: We’ve been talking immigration this morning as UKIP Leader Nigel Farage has been setting out his party’s plans for a points-based visa system. Recently the party proposed a cap of 50,000 people a year, compared to the 300,000 currently entering the country. Now Nigel Farage is refusing to come up with a target figure this time, but he did say under the Auatralian system he supports 27,000 people would have been allowed to come here in the last year.(TAPE)
NIGEL FARAGE: That number will vary a bit every year. But all of those people that come will have to bring with them health insurance, and will not be able to claim benefits of any kind until they’ve been here and paid into the tax system for five years. And that I think is a fair way of dealing with people that want to come to Britain to work.
PAUL STAINTON: Now we had Rupert Read on from the Greens earlier, who said that there’s a better way to deal with immigration. That’s to sort out the problems at source, and then people wouldn’t want to come here. A sort of Utopian vision is what the Greens were presenting. We also heard from Heidi Allen as well, who threatened to quit if David Cameron doesn’t come up with the promised referendum in 2017.
HEIDI ALLEN: It’s such a fundamental position of constant integrity that David Cameron has made to the British people, and I’m a member of the British people as well. And if that came to pass, if a referendum, you know, obviously we need to be in power in May, but you know it would be going back on one of the things that’s most emotive to people in this country. And that would be deceitful.
PAUL STAINTON: Yes. Well let’s get the view now of Jonathan Djanogly, the MP for Huntingdon. Jonathan, good morning.
PAUL STAINTON: Most of our listeners it has to be said, I would say, 95% of the people listening to this show, sixty odd thousand, are pretty much in favour of what Nigel Farage is saying this morning. Where stand you?
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Cambridge bloggers on Election 2015

17:13 Monday 5th January 2014
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

CHRIS MANN: So in case you hadn’t noticed, there is a General Election coming up this year. The campaign, well it’s been a slow-burner until now, but it’s beginning to produce more than a few sparks. Let’s find out what we think is going to be in prospect locally from two leading Cambridgeshire bloggers on politics, Richard Taylor .. hello Richard.
RICHARD TAYLOR: Good afternoon Chris.
CHRIS MANN: .. and Antony Carpen, known to many as Puffles. Hello Antony.
ANTONY CARPEN: Good afternoon Chris.
CHRIS MANN: So gentlemen, how much do you think there will be Cambridgeshire issues in this election campaign? Richard first.
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