Nick Smith is MP for Blaenau Gwent

What has Nick Smith been up to today?

Nick Smith is MP for Blaenau Gwent and a member of the Labour party.

Nick Smith has 10967 followers on Twitter.

Here's the letter I have sent to the Permanent Secretary of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), once again setting out how Blaenau Gwent is being left by the Department’s gigabit broadband rollout.

I challenged the Minister to confirm that the passport office backlog will be cleared before the start of the school holidays next month. He could not give me a good answer.
Also worth pointing out that the ‘collective passports’ he mentions are only accepted in eight countries.

I am holding a surgery in Abertillery library this Friday, please get in touch if you want to book a slot.
If you can't make the surgery, get in touch with me via 01495 313167 / nick.smith.mp@parliament.uk and I will arrange to speak another time.

Outstanding inaugural! Networking more GP practices to parkrun. Well done @llanprkparkrun volunteers. Supporting #parkrunpractice #movemorecardiff @CV_UHB. Thanks @cardiffcouncil @RCGPWales @BlaenauGwentMP @KeithJones

Great to support #MenopauseMonday in the House of Commons earlier this week, Carolyn Harris brought together fellow MPs and campaigners such as @mariellaf1 to make a case for improved support for the menopause.
A great day and there’s much more to come.
📷 @Jess__Taylor__

The Home Office failed to prevent the passport chaos that's causing so much stress for families, despite being warned it was coming.
Ministers are ducking questions & not admitting the scale of the problem.
We need a realistic plan to get this sorted ahead of the summer holidays

Yesterday, in the Public Accounts Committee, I questioned the former head of the FCA (and current Governor of the Bank of England) Andrew Bailey about the handling of the British Steelworkers Pension Scheme scandal.
You can watch the full session here: https://bit.ly/3NRDt5i

Just seen a @parkrunUK volunteer in burgess park (glengall rd end) dancing & clapping every runner and every person who saw him was smiling and I just think ppl with that kind of spirit /joy are brilliant. What a hero.

MONDAY 4-430pm #PAC questions to Andrew Bailey, currently head of the Bank of England; formerly head of @TheFCA when thousands of #BritishSteel #pensioners were the victims of #financial #regulation failures that left some with life savings losses of up to £489k

Great to officially open the brilliant new Cyber Security Hub at Coleg Gwent, Ebbw Vale today.
I am delighted that young people in Blaenau Gwent have this fantastic new facility and course on their doorsteps, providing the skills they need for the jobs of the future.

Proud to join @BlaenauGwentMP with our industry and FE partners to open the CyberHub at @coleggwent Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone. Part of the innovative #CyberCollegeCymru partnership, it gives learners an industry standard facility as they prepare for a cyber career.

A constituent of mine with a holiday next week still doesn’t have a passport, despite applying in February.
The government is failing to get on top of this and refusing to answer reasonable questions about the backlog.
The government must up its game and get this chaos sorted.

176 PPE contracts (totalling £2.6bn) are in dispute.
I asked about the cost of legal advice and consultants being drafted in to deal with this and received a hopeless response.
People deserve clear answers about how much is being spent on the ongoing costs of PPE mismanagement.

Thank you, diolch yn fawr @CarmsCouncil and all the volunteers for helping to bring back Carmarthen junior parkrun. An example @WelshLGA supporting @parkrunCymru junior events. Another 30 happy, smiling faces this morning! @BlaenauGwentMP @JGriffithsLab

An MP has said the MoD has been aware of problems with a Welsh made tank since 2014

https://www.thenational.wales/news/20188070.mp-says-3bn-spent-ajax-military-vehicles-cost-12-hospitals/

Across Wales, people are coming together to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee.

At Welsh Labour, we send our thanks and best wishes to Her Majesty The Queen for an unparalleled seven decades of public service.

It was the 100th @parkrunCymru at Aberbeeg on Saturday and well over a 100 of us took part.
Thumbs up to the volunteers who turn out to make it all happen every week.
It's always a thrill to catch sight of the Six Bells Guardian on the run back.
#parkrun

Good piece on lack of readiness at the Home Office on passport applications this year. I’ve put in about a dozen parliamentary questions on the topic and the answers have been hopeless. Doesn’t bode well for UK summer holidaymakers. Let’s hope the government gets a grip soon.

Geri Scott @Geri_E_L_Scott

Ministers knew six months ago of Passport Office problems

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/3a966870-dde9-11ec-bcbd-e35b52e0266c?shareToken=7c4a21871c09505269550148774d6761

It's War Graves Week, so today I visited Ebbw Vale cemetery to remember the men and women who fought and died in the two world wars from our community. Commiserations to their families, and it was nice to meet and thank some of those who maintain the graves of our fallen heroes.

Trouble at mill?
Expensive fast-track passport applications up 30% since Nov & set to rise another 20%. Families face paying nearly double in a costs crisis.
Satisfaction rate just 63% (target: 90%)
Constituents need action. Government must come clean on the scale of the backlog

This is awful news. The Director of Education tells me the Council are trying to support all involved and it’s also been reported to the HSE. I hope the police investigation is quick and my heart goes out to the child and family. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-61528271

Yesterday the Conservative government voted to protect oil and gas producers over working people and pensioners.

Labour would introduce a one-off windfall tax on oil and gas producer profits to put money back in your pocket.

‘I’ve had 20 constituents come to me in the last few weeks about these sorts of issues’

Nick Smith MP discusses delays in passport renewal from the Home Office.

📺 Freeview 236, Sky 515, Virgin 626
🖥 GB News on YouTube https://bit.ly/3vAYaw0

Here's my latest monthly report
https://nick-smith.net/blog/2022/05/17/nick-smith-mp-monthly-members-report-may-2022/

Energy bills are going up and we are on hand to support our beneficiaries. Our one-off £200 energy grant is available to people who meet certain eligibility conditions. We'll also help them access other subsidies and grants too. Find out more https://www.ciswo.org.uk/post/fuel-grant-worth-200-avaliable-

⛏️ If you or someone in your household are a former coal miner and on low income, @ciswo_, the fantastic Coal Miners' charity, may be able to offer you a £200 fuel grant to help you pay your energy bills.

🔗 Read more:
https://www.ciswo.org.uk/post/fuel-grant-worth-200-avaliable-

Pleased the Speaker allowed me to ask a UQ today on the key issue of passport delays for my constituents, and people across the UK,
This mess was avoidable. The government had plenty of time to prepare for the inevitable rush of applications when travel restrictions lifted.

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