Blog

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Jo McCarron met with Steve Camm, Chairman of the Bristol Rover’s Supporters Club, and parents with children who play for the Club’s Junior FC teams, to discuss the recent break-in and burglary at their clubhouse on Southey Avenue Playing Fields.

Jo McCarron gets behind local football club hit by break-in and burglary

Jo McCarron met with Steve Camm, Chairman of the Bristol Rover’s Supporters Club, and parents with children who play for the Club’s Junior FC teams, to discuss the recent break-in... Read more

Jo McCarron, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Kingswood, has obtained confirmation from the Independent Reconfiguration Panel that they reported to the Secretary of State for Health on 7th April with their advice on whether the promised Minor Injuries Unit should be delivered at Cossham Hospital – they are still awaiting Jeremy Hunt’s decision.

Health Secretary Stalls On Minor Injuries Unit Decision

Jo McCarron, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Kingswood, has obtained confirmation from the Independent Reconfiguration Panel that they reported to the Secretary of State for Health on 7th April with their... Read more

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Jo McCarron and Save Cossham campaigners gathered on Wednesday to highlight the ongoing wait for additional urgent care services close to home – it was the 773rd day since the Minor Injuries Unit we were promised as Cossham Hospital was supposed to open, as part of the £19million refurbishment secured by Roger Berry, Labour Councillors and many of the campaigners who have been demanding the MIU.

Jo McCarron and Save Cossham campaigners highlight unacceptable wait for urgent care services

Jo McCarron and Save Cossham campaigners gathered on Wednesday to highlight the ongoing wait for additional urgent care services close to home – it was the 773rd day since the... Read more

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Jo McCarron introduced Labour's Shadow Chancellor, Ed Balls, and Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Rachel Reeves, at the launch of Labour's economic plan for the South West.

Jo McCarron introduces Ed Balls and Rachel Reeves at Airbus

   Jo McCarron introduced Labour's Shadow Chancellor, Ed Balls, and Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Rachel Reeves, at the launch of Labour's economic plan for the South... Read more

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Jo McCarron, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Kingswood, set up a meeting for residents with traffic officers from South Gloucestershire Council to discuss concerns about parking and traffic problems on Tower Road North and Station Road. The traffic officers agreed to amend proposals for a new residents parking scheme so it includes Tower Road North, to help reduce the number of cars blocking the flow of traffic while making it easier for residents currently struggling to park on their street.

Jo McCarron helps residents have their say over parking and traffic problems

Jo McCarron, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Kingswood, set up a meeting for residents with traffic officers from South Gloucestershire Council to discuss concerns about parking and traffic problems on Tower... Read more

Jo and the Kingswood Labour team are a step closer to staving off community safety cuts after Labour councillors secured agreement to protect - for a single year - Police Community Support Officers due to be cut. The campaign to keep our communities safe in the years to come goes on, but Jo and the Labour team have welcomed this progress.

Progress in Labour's bid to stave off community safety cuts

Jo and the Kingswood Labour team are a step closer to staving off community safety cuts after Labour councillors secured agreement to protect - for a single year - Police... Read more

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Jo spoke at a rally in Kingswood Park this morning with dozens of residents gathered once again to show the frustration and anger at the decision by NHS bosses not to provide a Minor Injuries Unit at Cossham Hospital.

Jo then made a statement at the Council's Health Scrutiny meeting, explaining why over the winter months residents have become increasingly frustrated and angry.

Jo said: “With every week and every month that the CCG considers and drafts and evaluates, we go without the urgent care services we were promised… Residents have not been given the answers they need to be convinced that the CCG’s alternative plans will work… People have become increasingly concerned about the clear strain local A&E departments have been under in recent weeks... On top of all this, there is the anxiety that comes from the decision to downgrade plans for the community hospital promised at Frenchay, despite local Tory MPs claiming it was already saved. The fear is that once again local services are being downgraded.”

The CCG reported that their plans are still being developed, so they were unable to set out the details or give the reassurances Jo and the Save Cossham Group had asked for.

Many residents left the meeting early because they felt the CCG still wasn't listening, and councillors voted unanimously to refer the CCG's decision not to provide the Minor Injuries Unit to the Government, to be reviewed by the Health Secretary.

The full text of Jo's statement is below.

* * *

"My name is Jo McCarron - and I am here once again to support residents who feel worried about the future of emergency health care in this area.

I'm out speaking to hundreds of residents every week across the constituency and I have to say the strength of feeling about the MIU has only intensified over the winter months.

I have attended a number of meetings to hear from the Clinical Commissioning Group how they intend to provide effective urgent care close to home.

I have said consistently that if the CCG could demonstrate clearly to residents how their proposed alternative plans either match or exceed the promised Minor Injuries Unit at Cossham, then we would support that alternative. 

But we have made it absolutely clear throughout that we will not accept yet another downgraded service.

I fully understand the pressure the CCG themselves are under – but the fact is, residents have still not been convinced. They are increasingly frustrated and angry. 

Why is that?

Firstly, because not only do we have no Minor Injuries Unit – but the CCG’s alternative plans are still only being drawn up.

Patience wore thin long ago. With every week and every month that the CCG considers and drafts and evaluates, we go without the urgent care services we were promised.

Secondly, because residents have not been given the answers they need to be convinced that the alternative plans will work.

Take the last scrutiny meeting.

Residents attended hoping that the most basic questions would be answered. We knew that there wouldn't be fine detail, but they hoped for some proper insight into the CCG’s alternative.

I left that meeting wondering if the CCG thought they has succeeded with their communications strategy when hordes of people walked out?

People had come for answers – and instead they got a slideshow. If there is one sure way to upset an already disgruntled crowd, it is by feeding them useless PR which they'll see straight through.

They just want you - the CCG - to talk to them and be straight, not show them slides. It's this kind of thing which has already caused distrust and anger - and perhaps that was not the intention, but it's most certainly the outcome.

The CCG has now given written answers to questions put to them by local councillors, but I’m afraid there are still big holes. For example: 

We still don’t know where the new urgent care services will be delivered.

We don’t know what level of additional staffing will be provided. 

We do know they are hoping to provide an urgent care service on evenings, weekends and bank holidays – but the wording shows that even that isn't concrete. 

Finally, people have become increasingly concerned about the clear strain local A&E departments have been under in recent weeks.

People are not stupid – they can see what is happening nationally.

The Government has piled pressure on our NHS, with nurses’ jobs cut, funding for social care slashed, and billions wasted on a top-down reorganisation to create Clinical Commissioning Groups such as this one – money that could have been spent on frontline care.  

Walk-in centres have been closed.

Waiting times have hit their worst level in 10 years. 

Hospitals have declared “major incidents” because their A&E departments couldn’t cope.

So it's no wonder people feel more insecure than ever about the provision of local emergency healthcare.

On top of all this, there is the anxiety that comes from the decision to downgrade plans for the community hospital promised at Frenchay, despite local Tory MPs claiming it was already saved. The fear is that once again local services are being downgraded.

People feel let down. Trust has been diminished.

So residents need reassurance today that decision-makers understand how important it is for them to have effective urgent care services close to home.

Today is crunch time, and I hope the the CCG can shed more light on the questions we have raised, because for residents this is the last straw."

Jo speaks at Cossham rally before councillors force Government to review MIU decision

Jo spoke at a rally in Kingswood Park this morning with dozens of residents gathered once again to show the frustration and anger at the decision by NHS bosses not...

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Jo McCarron was joined by Jack Dromey, Labour's Shadow Policing Minister, to meet with local councillors and residents at New Cheltenham Hall to discuss cuts being planned to the Council's Community Safety budget. Jo called for the Government to reinstate the funds and launched a petition to show residents' concerns about the threat to PCSOs, CCTV cameras and the Council team that tackles anti-social behaviour.

Jo McCarron Launches Community Safety Campaign

  Jo McCarron was joined by Jack Dromey, Labour's Shadow Policing Minister, to meet with local councillors and residents at New Cheltenham Hall to discuss cuts being planned to the... Read more

Jo McCarron has welcomed today’s decision by South Gloucestershire Council’s Policy & Resources Committee to allocate up to £150,000 towards improved traffic calming measures on Craven Way, in response to growing pressure from local residents who Jo has been working with over the last 10 months.

Jo McCarron and local residents welcome Council’s decision to back Craven Way campaign

Jo McCarron has welcomed today’s decision by South Gloucestershire Council’s Policy & Resources Committee to allocate up to £150,000 towards improved traffic calming measures on Craven Way, in response to... Read more

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Jo McCarron is working with local residents in Hanham to help ease parking problems at school drop-off and pick-up times on Memorial Road.

Jo McCarron joins residents to address school parking problems

Jo McCarron is working with local residents in Hanham to help ease parking problems at school drop-off and pick-up times on Memorial Road. Read more

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