Stephanie Visits Netherwood Academy

As reported in the Barnsley Chronicle on 1st June, Stephanie recently visited Netherwood Academy to discuss the MindSpace initiative.The initiative, run by Barnsley CCG, aims to improve children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing, focusing on supporting young people, their families and schools, identifying and working on things like anxiety, depression, and self-harm. Commenting, Stephanie said:“Supporting young people's mental health is crucial, particularly through prevention and early intervention, and I’m pleased to see the CCG taking such a proactive approach through the MindSpace initiative.“It was a pleasure to meet pupils at Netherwood Academy, who spoke about how much the initiative has helped them.“More widely, around one in ten children in our country today have a clinically diagnosable mental health problem, yet just 8% of mental health budgets are spent on children and young people.“It’s time that mental health was given the same importance as physical health. This Government must end its chronic underfunding of our NHS and provide more funding for mental health services here in Barnsley and right across the country.”  

Stephanie Presses Government on NHS

As reported in the Barnsley News and Sport on 31st May, Stephanie has pressed the Government on the workforce pressures facing the NHS. The local MP questioned the Government recently for staffing figures and workforce plans. The move comes after recent figures released by the Royal College of Physicians show an increasing strain on the NHS workforce, with staff shortages in a number of key areas a growing concern. According to these figures, 43 per cent of advertised consultant posts in the last year in the Yorkshire and Humber region were not filled. In addition to these gaps, over one third of the consultants currently working in the NHS in the Yorkshire and Humber will reach the planned retirement age in the next decade. Nationally, recent figures have shown that more than 100,000 NHS posts lay vacant, with the number of vacancies for nurses above 40,000 and the number of unfilled doctor positions beyond 10,000 for the first time. Peacock asked questions of the Government on these issues, demanding further workforce statistics and details of the Government’s plans to tackle an ageing staff. She said: “Tory mismanagement of our beloved NHS has had a devastating impact on both patients and staff alike. “The figures show that here in our region, vast numbers of key positions in our NHS remain unfilled, whilst an ageing workforce will place even more pressure on an already strained health service. “The Government has consistently failed to ensure new recruits are brought through in vital areas, whilst chronic underfunding, the NHS pay cap and the end to the NHS bursary have helped contribute to a workforce crisis of their own making. “I’ve demanded details from the Government on their plans for our NHS workforce, and I’ll continue to hold them account and push for a sustainable long-term plan our NHS desperately needs.”

Stephanie Backs Breast Cancer Fundraising Event

As reported in the Barnsley Gazette and Barnsley Chronicle on 25th May, Stephanie met with leading charity Breast Cancer Care recently to support the launch of Afternoon Tea, the charity’s annual summer fundraising campaign. Following the Parliamentary meeting on 15th May, Stephanie is encouraging her constituents to join in to support those affected by breast cancer. The event raised awareness of Afternoon Tea, where people are encouraged to get together with friends, family or colleagues in July to raise vital funds for the UK’s leading breast cancer support charity. All of the money raised at Afternoon Teas up and down the country will enable Breast Cancer Care to continue to be there to provide free care, support and information to those affected by breast cancer. Stephanie commented: “Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK today with 62,000 women and men diagnosed each year. “That’s why I’m supporting Breast Cancer Care’s Afternoon Tea fundraising campaign, so that the charity can continue to provide its vital support services, to those who need them, for free. “I’d like to encourage as many people as possible across Barnsley to sign up on the Breast Cancer Care website and take part in the fundraiser this summer.”

Working with Local Dementia Groups

21st May marks Dementia Action week; Dementia Action Week is run by the Alzheimer’s Society, and aims to raise awareness and bring about positive change for those living with dementia and their carers. Stephanie recently became a patron of Barnsley Independent Alzheimer's and Dementia Support, and also visited local Butterflies Dementia Support group. You can read more about Stephanie's work on dementia here.

Column: The Great Gift Aid Robbery

As featured in the Barnsley Chronicle on 25th May, Stephanie's recent column focused on the 'great gift aid robbery'. She wrote about private fundraising platforms use a loophole to charge a fees on taxpayer donations, taking money intended for good causes and lining their own pockets.. You can read her full comments here.  

Stephanie Supports 'Afternoon Tea' Fundraising

As reported in the Barnsley News and Sport on 22nd May, Stephanie met with leading charity Breast Cancer Care recently to support the launch of Afternoon Tea, the charity’s annual summer fund-raising campaign. Following the Parliamentary meeting on 15th May, Stephanie is encouraging her constituents to join in to support those affected by breast cancer. The event raised awareness of Afternoon Tea, where people are encouraged to get together with friends, family or colleagues in July to raise vital funds for the UK’s leading breast cancer support charity. All of the money raised at Afternoon Teas up and down the country will enable Breast Cancer Care to continue to be there to provide free care, support and information to those affected by breast cancer. Said Stephanie: “Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK today with 62,000 women and men diagnosed each year. “That’s why I’m supporting Breast Cancer Care’s Afternoon Tea fund-raising campaign, so that the charity can continue to provide its vital support services, to those who need them, for free. “I’d like to encourage as many people as possible across Barnsley to sign up on the Breast Cancer Care website and take part in the fund-raiser this summer.”

Stephanie Reveals Education Secretary yet to Visit South Yorkshire

As reported in the Barnsley Gazette on 11th May, has forced the Government to admit the Education Secretary has not visited a nursery, school, or college in South Yorkshire. The revelation came in response to a parliamentary question submitted by the local Barnsley MP. In their response, the Government admitted their Education Secretary Damian Hinds MP has failed to make a single visit to South Yorkshire. Appointed at the turn of the year, the Minister in charge of the country’s education system has made a solitary trip to the whole of Yorkshire – to visit a nursery in Bedale. Barnsley East’s Stephanie Peacock – a former teacher who even before her election brought Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary to visit Barnsley’s schools – claimed following the admission it’s no surprise the Government is out-of-touch with the problems facing schools in Barnsley and South Yorkshire. Said Stephanie: “Our schools are facing unprecedented pressure with budgets slashed, resources cut, and teachers leaving the profession in droves. “Yet how would the Education Secretary have any idea how this is affecting schools here in Barnsley when he has failed to make a single visit to the region? “The Minister is welcome to come and see the damage his Government’s appalling obsession with austerity is doing to Barnsley’s schools, but given his record I won’t hold my breath. “This is just another example of an out-of-touch Tory Government ignoring people here in Barnsley.”  

Apprenticeships Supplement

AS featured in the Barnsley Chronicle's Education Supplement on 11th May, Stephanie wrote about apprenticeships. She discussed the need for high-quality apprenticeships in tackling an increasing skills shortage across the UK, and her employment of a local living-wage apprentice in her constituency office. You can read her full comments here.   

Column: Austerity and Life Expectancy

As featured in the Barnsley Chronicle on 11th May, Stephanie's recent column focused on her the growing evidence linking austerity with the UK flat-lining - and in some cases decreasing - life expectancy levels. You can read her full comments here.

Column: Private Members Bill on rights for agency workers

As featured in the Barnsley Chronicle on 27th April, Stephanie's recent column focused on her Private Members Bill. She wrote about how her Bill would expand the rights of agency workers and end exploitative working practices. You can read her full comments here.