Kate Osborne MP accuses the Prime Minister of insulting subpostmasters.

At Prime Ministers Questions, Jarrow MP Kate Osborne slammed the Prime Minister for the Tory Government’s lack of action over the Horizon Scandal.

Kate Osborne said:

“The Prime Minister promised a new law to swiftly exonerate and compensate the post office scandal victims – more empty promises when no legislation has been brought forward.

Disrespectful pantomime behaviour from the Prime Minister and his Tory MPs at #PMQs today

Their attempts to shout me down won’t distract from their abject failures and deliberate delaying tactics.

Instead of insulting the Post Office Scandal victims the Prime Minister should be ensuring they get justice.”

During PMQs today Kate Osborne asked: 

“Mr Speaker, I heard the Prime Minister’s responses to the Leader of the Opposition and just like the Secretary of State claims that delays on compensation are ‘wild, baseless allegations’, his answers are unbelievable.

“The reality is we wouldn’t have any action without the ITV serialisation of the sub-postmasters scandal – despite many Members raising the issue in this House for years.

“Mr Speaker, the Prime Minister promised a new law to “swiftly exonerate and compensate victims” 

So will he commit to ensuring this is brought forward before the next General Election?”

Following her question, Kate Osborne MP slammed the Prime Minister’s response and his exchange with the Leader of the Opposition who referenced Kate’s constituent Chris Head – the youngest subpostmaster in the country when he was wrongly accused of stealing more than £80,000.

“It is clear the Prime Minister and his Government have checked out and are stumbling their way to the next General Election. His pitiful response to my Prime Minister’s Question today shows just that. 

“I am truly appalled that they did nothing but jeer whilst Starmer recounted Chris’s words. Chris deserves a lot more respect than that.

“For years, the Government has done nothing but kick the Horizon Scandal into the long grass. They have known about this scandal for decades, yet it has taken an ITV drama to kick them into action. Even now, Sunak and his Ministers are delaying compensation claims to “limp into the next election.”

Sub-postmasters have waited long enough – we need action from Government, not more empty promises”

Notes: 

 Link to Kate’s tweet and video of her PMQ – https://x.com/KateOsborneMP/status/1760302756940689889?s=20 

Video of Kate’s question to the minister from 19th February 2024: https://fb.watch/qkAmmKT7qX/
https://kate-osborne.co.uk/2024/01/10/helping-subpostmasters/ 

 Kate Osborne MP has been a long term campaigner of justice for the sub-postmasters, first asking a question about the scandal only months after her election. It was this question to the then Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, in 2020 that forced an independent inquiry leading to the findings that we now are seeing get national attention

Huge win for constituents as Jarrow MP gets multiple Tyne Tunnel charges scrapped – including £32,000 for just one person.

Kate Osborne MP said:

“I am delighted that these inaccurate outstanding toll charges and added fees have been settled.”

“I’ve had a number of constituents contact me regarding inaccurate charging, but this instance of £32,000 was frankly ridiculous.

I know this matter was causing a great deal of stress and anxiety, with both my constituent and her employer raising this with Tyne Tunnel without success, I am pleased that following my contact with Tyne Tunnel 2, they finally agreed to scrap the vast majority of the outstanding toll charges and penalties”

Background:

Earlier this month, a constituent contacted the Jarrow MP’s office in distress about receiving a fine of unpaid charges and added fees totalling over £32,000.  Kate’s constituent informed her that she started a new job and the role involved driving through the Tyne Tunnel. 

The employer was the account holder for the constituent and by mistake, had typed one wrong digit for the registration plate. This then led to numerous fines being issued.

The constituent, who has health problems, received numerous letters relating to this unpaid charge which caused her a great deal of stress and anxiety.  

The employer explained that they had been in contact with Tyne Tunnel 2 about this issue on numerous occasions but were unable to get the situation resolved. 

As a result of this ever-growing debt, Kate’s constituent’s mental health had taken a severe downward turn and both her and her employer were fearful this substantial debt will eventually impact on her job role.

However, following contact from Kate’s office almost £32,000 of charges were written off and the constituent’s employer agreed to fund the remainder of the outstanding balance of around £800.

This has relieved Kate’s constituent of a substantial amount of stress which was causing her to have sleepless nights and a great deal of anxiety.

Notes:

The constituent has agreed for Kate to speak to the press about her case.

I’d urge anyone else having issues to get in touch [email protected] 

 

Kate Osborne MP’s office has had success in overturning a further 3 fines issued by TT2 in the past 12 months and at least 1 other ongoing case open.

Jarrow MP Kate Osborne Slams Government’s King’s Speech as “vacuous” and “morally compromised”

King Charles delivered his first king’s speech today, outlining the Tory government’s plans for laws over the next Parliamentary session. 

Kate Osborne MP for the Jarrow constituency has slammed the Government’s speech today stating: “We have a Government that has given up on governing. In 2022 they announced 29 legislative Bills, though more than a third were abandoned or not introduced. With just 21 Bills announced in this King’s Speech, it’s clear they are spent. This speech failed to deliver for communities, businesses or for the North of England.

This zombie Government needs to go – we need a general election now.” 

Following the speech Kate Osborne MP said:

After 13 years and five Tory Prime Ministers, we now have a government that has given up on governing – they have no new ideas, no plans to improve people’s lives in our country, no support for communities or small businesses. 

 

In 2022 they announced 29 legislative bills – more than 1/3 of them were abandoned or not introduced, today they announced just 21 and most of them won’t see the light of day.

The speech failed to deliver for the people of the UK, failed to deliver for communities, businesses or for the North of England. The measures won’t tackle the housing crisis, the NHS crisis, the cost of living crisis or lift any of the 6000 hungry kids in Jarrow out of poverty and despite us seeing the worst energy bills crisis in a generation, they admitted themselves their lauded flagship plans in the Kings Speech won’t cut energy bills by a single penny. 

Their awful plans to remove tents from homeless people may have been dropped by Sunak, but it portrays the callous and contemptuous way they view people. Their housing plans are a gross betrayal of the promise to help renters.

Their failure to ban conversion therapy shows a callous disregard for LGBTQ+ people living in this country.

We have a morally compromised Government who are attempting to gaslight the country.

Blaming NHS workers for the NHS crisis they caused, doubling down on their anti worker rhetoric, when the right to strike is a fundamental human right protected in UK and International law.

Talking up that inflation has finally started to fall – despite knowing the damage has already been done and the cost of living crisis will be even worse for most people this winter.  Talking up their plans to be tough on crime – whilst 90% of crimes go unsolved.

Their sleaze, cronyism, and failure to deliver on promises has left the country in a mess, degraded Parliament and eroded trust in politicians. 

This Zombie Government is spent – the General election can not come soon enough.

Kate Osborne MP wins changes on equality of access to IVF in Parliamentary debate.

Jarrow MP Kate Osborne led a debate in Parliament today (24/10/23) on IVF provision and called on the Government and NHS England to immediately end the discrimination in IVF provision facing LGBTQ+ couples. 

Ahead of the debate, Osborne hosted a drop in session – joined by campaigners including Stonewall, What Wegan Did Next, LGBT Mummies, Two Dads UK and Stonewall – each sharing devastating accounts of LGBTQ+ people giving up on their dream to become parents because they have ran out of money as LGBTQ+ people are being priced out of having a family.

Osborne raised discriminatory policies, a postcode lottery in provision, couples spending tens of thousands on treatment and many other issues with the current Gov policies and Nice guidelines.

She also highlighted the Government’s commitment to deal with this inequality is more than a year old.

The Government and NHS England have responded with a ten year strategy to tackle the issues raised, Osborne and other MPs present at the debate argued that most women cannot wait 10 years for the rules to change – calling for urgent action from Ministers. 

Responding to the debate Maria Caulfield Minister for Women Health and Mental Health committed to bringing forward secondary legislation to remove discrimination in LGBTQ couples living with HIV, to removing the requirement for screening costs for LGBTQ+ couples and to producing guidelines imminently to remove all additional financial barriers to same sex couples.

Following the debate Osborne said: 

“I’m really pleased that in today’s debate the minister finally committed to changing laws that discriminate against people living with HIV.

“The Minister also recommitted to remove screening costs and all the additional financial barriers for same sex couples.

“This will mean the end of the “Gay tax” for LGBTQ+ couples that want to start a family.

“I will be monitoring the situation closely and ensuring the Government quickly keep this promise.

“It is unacceptable that LGBTQ+ couples looking to start a family are left at the mercy of an unequal postcode lottery for fertility services.”

The National AIDS Trust said:

Thanks to Kate Osborne MP for mentioning this issue today and to all our allies for their consistent support on this issue. 

We look forward to seeing this finally become a reality!

 

Notes

 

Kate’s twitter.

 

https://twitter.com/KateOsborneMP/status/1716810906628137257?t=N1iq168knIioGzZ-S7c42Q&s=19 

 

APPG HIV aids

 

https://twitter.com/APPG_HIV_AIDS/status/1716758353227964679?t=UYFq2evdV3c1MeJ5NPOvVA&s=19

 

Megan and Whitney tweet post debate

 

https://twitter.com/WhatWeganDid/status/1716849774190637467?t=y3PyhM5YEeZF6kl1mp6HHg&s=19 

 

Full debate

 

https://www.parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/6d65f265-a4bf-4452-8132-4e4658e5a8e1

 

Kate’s previous work on IVF inequality

 

IVF postcode lottery: Same-sex couples still being forced to spend up to £25k despite pledge to fix system (inews.co.uk) 

 

It’s shocking that LGBTQI+ couples don’t have equal access to IVF treatment – Kate Osborne MP (kate-osborne.co.uk)






My statement about the devastating ongoing violence in Palestine and Israel:

The awful scenes that continue to emerge from Israel, Gaza, and the rest of occupied Palestine has added to the decades of horror and despair that has unfolded there.

I am devastated by the ongoing violence in Palestine and Israel, which this past week has claimed the lives of thousands of Palestinians and Israelis.

I utterly abhor every single murder of innocent Israeli and Palestinian civilians.

The massacre of Israeli civilians by Hamas is a heinous crime, which I fully condemn. Hamas should immediately release all hostages.

The Palestinian civilians being killed now are not responsible for these atrocities.

2.2 million people – almost half of whom are children – are locked in one of the most densely populated areas on Earth, which has been described as an “open-air prison” by a United Nations expert.

Supplies of food, water, electricity and fuel, have been shut off putting Gaza on the brink of an unthinkable humanitarian catastrophe.

All leaders must act in line with international law. That means there must be humanitarian access to Gaza, and continued supplies of food, water, electricity and medicines.

Conservative MP and Chair of the Foreign Affairs select committee Alicia Kearns MP has said that Israel has a “duty” to turn water & electricity supply back on in Gaza.

As the UN General Secretary says, preventing further Israeli and Palestinian civilian suffering must be the focus.

More violence is not the answer,

I echo the calls of the UN and the WHO for urgent action to deliver humanitarian access and support to and from Gaza.

The Govt must redouble efforts that lead us to a secure Israel and a viable Palestine.

This Tory Government is bad for the country, bad for communities, bad for businesses and as we saw today, bad for the environment.

This Tory Government is bad for the country, bad for communities, bad for businesses and as we saw today, bad for the environment.

Sunak’s speech was deluded, mentioning how successful his Government is and singling out the NHS for achieving more – on a day when for the first time in history Junior Doctors and consultants were on strike because of this Government’s failures. The announcement uniting both the motor industry and the environmental lobby in opposition to his latest u turn.

This announcement today, just one day after Parliament broke for recess means there is no chance for MPs and Parliament to discuss this until October the 16th at the earliest.

We’re in a climate emergency. Now is not the time to water down vital net zero measures.

This is a complete farce from an incompetent Tory government that destroys everything it touches, proving again and again they do not know how to govern.

Sunak insinuated people couldn’t afford to pay to deal with the climate change crisis, none of us can afford not to do it – but working class people shouldn’t be forced to pay.

Instead of taking this ridiculous, chaotic and embarrassing step backwards, we need the Government to tackle climate change, recommit to reaching net zero by 2030 and ensure corporate polluters pay their fair share of tax to enable that to happen.

A year ago today Truss announced policies that destroyed the economy and the country is still struggling.

Now Sunak wants to announce policies that will help destroy the planet.

Thirteen years of failed Tory policies have destroyed public services, led to an energy bills crisis, created a cost of living crisis and failed on the climate crisis.

Today I held a small business drop in and over 70 people turned up, they are all being let down by this incompetent government.

This move is the latest of many broken Tory promises, and enough is enough.

What we should have heard from Sunak is a resignation, he should call a General Election so that Labour can start fixing the mess they have caused.

Small and Medium Sized Business Event Drop-in Hosted by Kate Osborne MP

Kate Osborne Jarrow MP has organised a SME business event, inviting small and medium sized businesses from across the Jarrow constituency to attend and pick up support and advice from a range of organisations. 

The event will bring together the Federation of Small Businesses NE, South Tyneside Council, Gateshead Council, Citizens Advice, TEDCO Business Support, PNE Social Boost Programme, BIPC North East, Small Business Charter, North East Ambition and will have resources available from other organisations such as Business Debtline. 

The event will run on Wednesday 20th September from 11am to 2pm and will be hosted at South Shields Football Club.

Ahead of the event Kate Osborne MP said: 

“In my role I have visited hundreds of businesses across the Jarrow constituency and a key theme at each of these was businesses were unsure on where best to access support and advice. 

“I felt it was therefore necessary to host this drop in event and bring together a range of organisations who can offer a variety of support – whilst providing the opportunity to network with other local businesses. 

“It’s extremely important to me as MP to champion and support local businesses in our area. We need skilled local jobs that help invest in our community, from small and medium sized businesses as well as from larger employers. 

“I’ve already received a large number of businesses register to attend this event which shows there is a demand for support amongst SME businesses and I am hopeful that along with the organisations present I will be able to offer more support to our brilliant small business community.” 

ENDS

RAAC School Closure Update

I’ve just met with Baroness Barran, the Department for Education (DFE) & Headteacher & CEO of St James’s Primary School in my constituency to ensure the issues our school are facing are dealt with promptly and that work starts as soon as possible to make the school safe.

We are now waiting for the DFE to carry out a viability assessment on what works are needed – this must be carried out as soon as possible. 

Face to face learning has started today at alternative sites, and I want to thank Francesca, the Head at St James, for doing all she can to minimise disruption given she had such short notice, dealing with all of the temporary arrangements and urgent risk assessments needed.

I also do want to thank Baroness Barran and her staff for their time and what was a constructive helpful meeting for my school.

However it is not acceptable that nationally schools are being told they may need to use reserves to pay for temporary arrangements. 

The Government need to ensure they are clear on exactly what will be reimbursed. what counts as reasonable costs and a timeline for works.

I will keep up the pressure on the Govt to support schools, to fully fund all temporary arrangements & long term works to make sure our kids are learning in safety!

And I will continue to highlight both this Government’s poor handling of the crisis and placing the blame squarely on this Govt and its decades of cuts in funding that have destroyed not just school buildings but many local services.



Kate Osborne MP | Safety of School Buildings Debate | 6th September 2023

My contribution in the #SchoolSafety debate today (06/09/23) highlighted the Govts disgraceful handling of this RAAC crisis.

The PM and Ministers seek to gaslight the whole country into believing everything is okay.

This Govt lie, spin and jeer but they know our schools & this country are falling apart because of their actions.

Communities neglected and left paying the price of Tory Chaos, whilst ministers, their spouses and their cronies get richer.

From the cost of living crisis, food and energy bills, to our waters, schools, our NHS – every part of our country is falling down.

Right now we have thousand of parents petrified because of this concrete crisis while at the same time we have a PM with feet made of clay.

We need a General Election so that we can start clearing up the mess they have caused.

Full text of Kate’s contribution: 

Earlier today the Prime Minister said that he had acted decisively on RAAC.

Earlier this week, the Minister said that schools where critical RAAC was identified had been fixed immediately. 

As we have come to expect from this Government, neither of those statements are true.

St James RC Primary school in my constituency had critical RAAC identified in June and action wasn’t taken immediately, or at all. They were told they could open in part and then, as many others, received just 24 hours notice that the school had to close in full.

Schools would not be in this position had this Government acted decisively. They have known RAAC was unsafe since 2018, they could and should have taken action much earlier. 

Decades of cutting money from vital public services have literally left buildings crumbling and left our kids at risk, sitting in unsafe buildings.

This Government’s decisions have left all of our public services on their knees, not just our schools but crumbling hospitals, courts and not just the buildings but whole services have collapsed.

Staff too are being failed – workers in schools, the NHS, Local Government have all been left propping up services – huge increases in workload, coupled with real terms pay cuts, has also left public sector workers at the point of collapse.

We know that this Government’s rhetoric on levelling up is yet more untruths and we know why, the Prime Minister boasting about moving money from poorer areas to richer areas, cutting tax on champagne, spending millions on new offices, whilst our Northern communities like Hebburn, Boldon, Jarrow and Gateshead in my constituency, are left behind.

Communities neglected and left paying the price of Tory Chaos, whilst ministers, their spouses and their cronies get richer.

The benches opposite attempt to gaslight the country into believing everything is okay. Despite their panto screaming during PMQs, they know the reality is 13yrs of Tory Govts has ruined our country. 

From the cost of living crisis, food and energy bills, to our waters, schools, our NHS – every part of our country is falling down.

The Secretary of State likes to keep saying that decisions were “nothing to do with me” – but the fact our schools and this country are falling apart is absolutely on them.

Right now we have thousand of parents petrified because of this concrete crisis while at the same time we have a PM/Sec of state with feet of clay

They need to accept their time is up and move aside so that we can start clearing up the mess they have caused.

Kate Osborne MP calls out Ministers disgraceful abdication of responsibility and “get off their arses” comment whilst raising the issue of St James’s school in Parliament yesterday.

Kate Osborne said:

St James’s school in my constituency alongside hundreds of schools nationally have been badly let down by Ministers. 

St James’s had critical RAAC identified in June, despite what the Minister told the media – this has not been immediately fixed and it is her responsibility.

Ministers and the DFE guidance has been contradictory on funding temporary costs and the school has been told to fund travel and temporary arrangements themselves. 

This is not acceptable – can the Minister confirm a timetable for works to make schools safe and that all costs will be fully funded.

Following the Question Kate Osborne said:

Whilst I’m pleased the Minister gave me a commitment that St James’s school would be fully reimbursed, she gave no indication of a timeline for works and dismissed her rude comments as off the cuff remarks. There is nothing off the cuff about telling the media that it was not her responsibility and that it was “not the job of the Department for Education” to ensure children are learning in safe school buildings.

This whole saga is a shambles, a complete disgrace and abdication of both Government responsibility and the consequence of Government cuts and underfunding of our schools.

I will be helping St James’s and potentially other schools as much as possible and continuing to demand that the Government takes urgent actions to ensure our kids are back learning in safe environments.

ENDS: 

Note: 

Kate’s social media on this including video of Question and Minister Response https://twitter.com/KateOsborneMP/status/1698762117044646377?s=20