Writing to the Health Secretary on industrial diseases and death certification

Alongside Labour colleagues and the NUM, I’ve written to Matt Hancock about changes to death certification in the pandemic, which have left miners' families worried about being entitled to compensation for death caused by industrial diseases from working down the pit.

Breast cancer screenings

Thousands of women are waiting for breast cancer screenings here in Barnsley.I will keep campaigning for the Govt. to outline its Cancer Recovery Plan, to deal with the screening backlog & get services on track.Cancer shouldn’t become the forgotten ‘C’ during this pandemic.Read more here.

Letter to ASOS

Following the news that ASOS has had record-breaking profits during COVID-19 lockdown, I've written to its CEO, Nick Beighton.Without its warehouse workers here in Grimethorpe, these profits would never have happened.ASOS should give them a share. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-54535775

Industrial diseases update

Families of miners who suffered from industrial diseases are losing out on compensation due to a relaxation of rules on COVID-19 death certificates. I’m organising a cross-party meeting, along with other MPs, to meet Ministers and ask them to look again at guidance. Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-52820499

Death certification and industrial diseases

Grieving families of miners who suffered from industrial diseases are losing out on compensation because of a relaxation of rules on COVID-19 death certificates. I have been pushing the Government over the last few months to change their guidance on this.For advice on a specific case, contact the NUM on 01226 215555.

Speaking to Radio Sheffield on COVID-19 at meat processing plants

I spoke on BBC Radio Sheffield about the spike in COVID-19 cases at meat processing plants across the county.This includes the Cranswick Country Foods factory in Wombwell where 3 workers sadly died.The Government urgently needs to take action to protect workers’ health.Listen to part of my comments here.

Calling on the Government to protect airline industry jobs

The treatment of British Airways workers during COVID-19 has been shameful.I've signed Unite's letter to the Government calling for better protections for UK airline industry jobs.BA needs to stop exploiting this crisis and halt its opportunistic fire and re-hire process.

Writing to Cranswick foods

Reports of new cases of COVID-19 at Cranswick foods is deeply concerning.I have written a letter with John Healey MP to the CEO asking for a review of health and safety policies and for the Wombwell site to be closed and deep-cleaned.My thoughts go out to the loved ones of the workers who have lost their lives to COVID-19 as well as those who are currently unwell.If you work at the site and have concerns please get in touch with my office: stephanie.peacock.mp@parliament.uk

Industrial diseases

Many miners gave years of their life to powering our nation as they worked down the mines, and many were sadly left with underlying health conditions caused by industrial diseases as a result of coal dust inhalation.During the coronavirus outbreak, the Government has relaxed rules on death certification by medical professionals, which may reduce the referrals to coroners of potential cases of deaths caused by industrial diseases. If deaths are attributed on death certificates to COVID-19 rather than underlying industrial diseases caused by service down the pit, this could impact on the rights of ex-miners’ families to receive the support and compensation they are entitled to.After this issue was raised by the National Union of Mineworkers, I, along with 19 of my Labour colleagues, wrote to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to highlight this important issue.We asked the Government to outline its plans to protect the wellbeing of miners and their families, to provide additional funding for services which support miners, and to provide funding for research into industrial diseases and whether they increase susceptibility to COVID-19. We also pressed the Government to ensure that industrial diseases are considered in the event of an ex-miner sadly passing away.Miners here in Barnsley and around the country have given so much to our nation. They deserve support in their retirement. Yet sadly, alongside the injustice and unfairness of the Mineworkers’ Pension Scheme, ex-miners are now facing a disregard of the health impacts of a life spent working underground. This is unacceptable.You can view the letter to the Government, and some of the media coverage of this issue, by clicking on the links below.Letterhttps://www.stephaniepeacock.org.uk/letter_to_the_government_on_death_certificate_rules MediaBarnsley Chronicle report: https://www.barnsleychronicle.com/article/letter-sent-over-incorrect-death-certificate-fears Daily Mirror report: https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/pandemic-rob-ex-miners-families-22079437 BBC report: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-52820499 ITV report: https://www.itv.com/news/calendar/2020-05-28/families-of-retired-miners-fear-losing-out-on-payouts-for-industrial-disease-due-to-covid-19/ My interview on Radio Sheffield: https://www.stephaniepeacock.org.uk/speaking_to_bbc_radio_sheffield_on_death_certificate_rules

My work on ASOS

Over the last two months, a number of constituents have contacted me regarding the ASOS warehouse. I share many of the concerns which have been raised with me.I have written to the ASOS Chief Executive, Nick Beighton, on more than one occasion, and I have also written to Barnsley Council about this issue, to highlight the concerns which have been raised with me.It is concerning that there are now confirmed cases of COVID-19 among the ASOS workforce, and my thoughts are with the employees and families affected.It is important that every step is taken to protect the wellbeing of warehouse workers. They deserve the same protections as those who work in high street shops and offices.You can view my letters, and some of the media coverage of this issue, by clicking on the links below.LettersCorrespondence with ASOS: https://cutt.ly/_CorrespondenceWithASOSLetter to Barnsley Council (sent 2nd April): https://cutt.ly/LetterToBarnsleyCouncilMediaBarnsley Chronicle report: https://www.barnsleychronicle.com/article/barnsley-mp-slams-retail-giant-for-neglecting-government-guidance-on-coronavirusWe Are Barnsley report: https://www.wearebarnsley.com/news/10923/mp-raises-concern-over-asosSheffield Star report: https://www.thestar.co.uk/health/coronavirus/asos-accused-playing-russian-roulette-peoples-lives-huge-warehouse-remains-open-2522436ITV News report, with my comments on this issue: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rSY4R0pEJcY&t=19sITV News report: https://www.itv.com/news/2020-03-30/asos-sale-coronavirus-workers-joel-hills/Huffington Post report: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/asos-warehouse-workers_uk_5e7dc9ccc5b6cb9dc19e16fc?a5&fbclid=IwAR0w0THn1IVXvFx_Q4WbhhgANUQji2bUh2lX0MDO0g_Zj69aYF1MLI2GTXQYorkshire Post report on our letter to the Government calling for them to change their advice and provide warehouse workers with the same protections as those working in high street shops and offices: https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/health/coronavirus/16-yorkshire-mps-call-government-clarify-key-worker-status-regions-employees-continue-work-2518322