Consistent with pledges Andrew made during and before the General Election, and in line with his long-standing opposition to hunting and killing foxes with hounds, Andrew is doing all he can to stop the Hunting Act from being repealed or weakened. The government has just postponed the vote on the wrecking amendments to the Hunting Act, but Andrew would have voted against them.
Andrew said: "In many ways it shows the weakness of the government’s position that it has decided to proceed by advancing such wrecking amendments while in theory (though not in practice) keeping hunting with dogs illegal, rather than proposing openly to re-legalise hunting, which seems to be its true objective.
The postponement of the vote on their proposals, which the government has just announced, also demonstrates the weakness of their position: the great majority of the British people support the ban, and many of the Government’s own MPs are having to listen to the voices of their constituents on this.
Should there be any future opportunity to do so, I will support any amendments which would effectively strengthen the Act in line with accordance with suggestions that the League Against Cruel Sports have made – to insert a “reckless” provision, prohibit the use of dogs below ground, and increase the range of punishments available to the courts.
The Act is working well, but could be strengthened in these areas to make it even more effective.
Oxford East MP Andrew Smith met some of the scientists that are helping drive the UK economy at an event held by the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Institute of Physics in Parliament on Tuesday 7 July.
He met with scientists to talk about UK success stories from research in both chemistry and physics, where innovations and companies have developed from work that began in university science departments. These successes from the UK’s science base are now creating jobs and economic growth across the UK.
The event highlighted the importance of long-term government funding to science and the benefits it has on the UK economy. The UK science and innovation system produces 15.9% of the world’s most highly cited publications, with only 4.1% of the world’s researchers.
Andrew said: “It was great to meet researchers from Oxford University, who are at the cutting edge of science innovation. There was plenty of evidence that physics and chemistry are contributing a great deal to our economy and also a clear message that science is an excellent career choice for young people to consider.”
Andrew today pledged his support to carers across Oxford as part of the national Carers Week 2015 awareness campaign, which runs from 8-14th June.
There are 6.5 million people in the UK who care for a partner, relative or friend, with over 9000 in Oxford East.
Without the right help and support, caring can have a devastating impact – carers can quickly become isolated, with their physical and emotional health, work and finances all hit hard.
The six charities driving Carers Week 2015 are calling on individuals, organisations and services throughout the country to take action to improve the lives of carers by building ‘carer-friendly communities’ that consider and support their needs.
The call comes after research for Carers Week revealed that the variation in the support and recognition carers experience from services across the country is putting the health of many carers, and their ability to support the people they care for, at risk.
Andrew said: "Carers make a vital contribution to our society but too often don't receive the support they need, which can have a large effect on their own lives. We need to do more to support carers and build carer-friendly communities, which is why I am backing Carers Week 2015
Andrew was re-elected as the MP for Oxford East on Thursday night with a hugely increased majority.
Andrew secured 25,356 votes which was 50% of the vote, on a turnout of 64%. The second placed candidate was the Conservative, 15,280 votes behind.
Andrew said: "It is an honour to be re-elected as the MP for Oxford East for the 7th time. I will continue working hard for everyone in Oxford East, regardless of which party they supported."
You can find the full results here.
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