“In the aftermath of yesterday’s terror attack my thoughts and prayers are with those who lost their lives and their families who will mourn their loss to such a senseless act of evil.
“I will never forget the ultimate sacrifice of PC Keith Palmer and his incredible act of bravery in tackling the terrorist attacker.
“My thoughts are also with the group of 13 Edge Hill University students and their lecturer who I’d been meeting with in Parliament just a short time before the attack took place. They had been on a Parliamentary tour before we met up for a chat on various political issues and my work as the MP for West Lancashire.
“Just before 2.30pm I left the group and headed off to attend a Westminster Hall debate. Little did any of us know what they would be walking into. I was deeply shocked and saddened to learn that four of the students had been injured. I have been in regular contact with Edge Hill University following the attack.
“I was in the Commons chamber throughout the hours that Parliament was in lockdown. Along with the updates from the Leader of the House, we were following events via social media and news sites on our phones or tablets.
“During this lockdown initial uncertainty and worry gave way to a strong and determined resolve within the Chamber not to take a step backwards in the face of such terror attacks. It is right that the House of Commons continued its Parliamentary business today as a demonstration of that desire to not give in to terrorism.
“An attack on Parliament is an attack on the very essence of our democratic society. We cannot allow these acts of terror to create divisions and hatred as this is the aim of such terrorists. We have to defend and protect our values of freedom and democracy.
“After 40 years of public service I can say that Wednesday 22 March 2017 will be a day I will never forget!”
“In the aftermath of yesterday’s terror attack my thoughts and prayers are with those who lost their lives and their families who will mourn their loss to such a senseless...
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper is fighting to protect the 313 bus service serving the Ashurst area of Skelmersdale as Arriva North West have given notice to terminate the service.
MP Rosie Cooper has contacted the Leader of Lancashire County Council calling for a replacement service to be secured to ensure that the residents of Ashurst are not left disconnected and isolated. At present the 313 is the only local bus route that serves the estates around Ashurst. Passengers use this service to travel to the bus station at the Concourse Shopping Centre to connect with other services to travel across Skelmersdale, into Ormskirk or into Liverpool.
Rosie Cooper MP said:
"It is a horrendous situation in the 21st century that an ever growing number of residents have no access or very limited access to public transport services.
"The loss of the 313 service in Ashurst will be a massive blow for many residents. It is the only service that serves the estates around Ashurst and operates as a half hourly service. For many residents they will use this service to connect with other bus services to get to work or to school or travel to the town centre shops.
"I have spoken to Arriva North West but they are proceeding with their decision to terminate this service.
"I have called on Lancashire County Council as the transport authority to act to protect this service by finding a new operator.
"Losing another bus service would be yet another devastating blow to public transport provision here in West Lancashire."
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper is fighting to protect the 313 bus service serving the Ashurst area of Skelmersdale as Arriva North West have given notice to terminate the service....
Rosie Cooper MP called on Theresa May today (Wednesday 22 March 2017) to investigate pay increases of up to 80% at NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as they embark on funding cuts to frontline health services and NHS staff receive a below inflation 1% pay increase.
A freedom of information request to Liverpool CCG from Commons health select committee member, Rosie Cooper, revealed members of the governing body received bumper pay rises mainly in 2014/15.
Notable increases include a 15% increase for the chief officer from £135,000 – £140,000 (2013/14) rising to £155,000 - £160,000 (2014/15). She also received £1,500 in expenses in 2014/15.
At the same time the chief finance officer received an inflation-busting 16% salary increase, taking his pay from £125,000 -£130,000 rising by at least £20,000 to £145,000 - £150,000. In 2014/15 he also had £600 in expenses according to published accounts.
However, these rises don’t compare to the 50% increase for the CCG Chair with a whopping £50,000 pay rise from his £100,000 – £105,000 salary in 2013/14 rocketing to £150,000 - £155,000 the next year.
For his Deputy Chair, a 42.85% salary increase taking their salary from £70,000 - £75,000 to £100,000 plus one year later.
In light of this information MP Rosie Cooper called on the Prime Minister to investigate the lack of governance and accountability that allows clinical commissioning groups to pay this level of salary and to only have two non -executive directors instead of the usual five.
In response the Prime Minister confirmed that NHS England would now be investigating the remuneration of members of the governing body of Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group.
Speaking after her challenge to Theresa May at Prime Minister’s Questions, Rosie Cooper MP said:
“The tremendous pressures on frontline NHS services to meet demand is not a secret.
“Whilst the CCG were handing out these scandalous pay rises to reward themselves, the CCG stood by and allowed grotesque failings to occur at Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust in which patients and staff were harmed by the culture of bullying and horrific management failures.
“The actions of Liverpool CCG reveal the extent to which, in this new health system, nobody is really holding CCG’s to account. They are a law unto themselves. It is clear in Liverpool they can do as they please and believe they do not answer to anyone.
“I believe there are serious questions that needed to be asked of, and answered by, the CCG in relation to the size of their pay increases, the number of people receiving these astronomical increases and how they justify the current salary levels especially at a time when community health services have seen £4.6 million cut from current funding, when frontline services are being cut and NHS staff are handed a 1% salary increase.
“There are now plans to merge Liverpool CCG with neighbouring South Sefton CCG and Southport and Formby CCG. Can you imagine the salaries they’d hand themselves from commissioning health services across three communities as well as the lack of proper governance in choosing the chief executive officer?
“All I am asking is for this situation to be reviewed and for there to be real public accountability.”
Rosie Cooper MP called on Theresa May today (Wednesday 22 March 2017) to investigate pay increases of up to 80% at NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as they embark...
Responding to the Skelmersdale town centre update statement, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said:
“I am delighted the partners have provided an update on the Skelmersdale redevelopment project.
“It is clear to me though that residents won’t be assured the town centre scheme will be delivered until the diggers are finally on site.
“I’m encouraged that the partners are indicating they are wanting to get a move on to make this project happen as the end of the original 15 year contract gets ever closer.
“Along with Skelmersdale residents, I am looking forward to further meaningful updates from the partners on their progress.”
Responding to the Skelmersdale town centre update statement, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said: “I am delighted the partners have provided an update on the Skelmersdale redevelopment project. “It is...
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has welcomed the commitment of £5 million in funding required to commission Network Rail to complete the GRIP 3 study on the feasibility of delivering railway station in Skelmersdale.
Speaking about the decision, MP Rosie Cooper said:
“A £5 million investment to carry out this technical feasibility study demonstrates a bringing a rail services to Skelmersdale is not just words. There is a real commitment to making this a reality.
“Once the survey work has been completed we should have a much clearer idea as to whether it is possible to construct a railway line into the town and what works would be needed.
“There is still a long way to go until we have a railway station in Skelmersdale. Progress towards that goal continues with this new study, which is good news for the town of Skelmersdale and its residents.”
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has welcomed the commitment of £5 million in funding required to commission Network Rail to complete the GRIP 3 study on the feasibility of delivering...
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has called on the Policing Minister to ensure the Home Office eradicates previous funding calculation errors and that police funding reflects the demands on police forces.
Speaking in Home Office questions in the House of Commons on Monday 6 March, MP Rosie raised concerns ahead of the revised National Police Funding Formula being finalised and used to calculate future funding arrangements.
Rosie asked the minister:
On a previous attempt to recalculate the national police funding formula, Lancashire police was set to lose £25 million a year. That was revised down to £8 million in year when inaccuracies were identified. That is on top of the £76 million that it had already saved since 2010. What steps is the Policing Minister taking to ensure that the national police funding formula will not repeat the same mistakes and will accurately reflect the demands on police forces?
In responding the Policing Minister attempted to offer his assurances on the matter saying ‘we will see where it goes for all in order to get a fair formula for the future.’
Speaking after the Parliamentary Question time, MP Rosie Cooper said
“As we see fewer and fewer police officers on our streets, police and community support officers rapidly dwindling and police stations closing it is unsurprising people are concerned as to the future impact of the new funding formula on our police service.
“The glaring errors of the Home Office’s first two attempts to calculate the funding formula are far from reassuring. Perhaps it will be third time lucky and they will get it right.
“We shall see if the Policing Minister will honour his commitment of a fair funding formula.
“Lancashire Police have already had to slash £76 million from their budget and they face a further £2.5 million cut to their government funding grant in the next financial year as well.
“As I told the Minister, police funding needs to accurately reflect the demands on our police forces so that people feel safe in their homes and safe on the streets.”
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has called on the Policing Minister to ensure the Home Office eradicates previous funding calculation errors and that police funding reflects the demands on police...
Following the announcement by Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust of the outcome of executive disciplinary appeals, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said:
"I am pleased this lengthy investigation into whistleblowing allegations made against senior executives has been concluded for the good of Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust, its staff and the patients it serves.
"The priority for the hospital trust now is to find a talented chief executive with a passion for delivering the best quality healthcare for West Lancashire and who is capable of tackling head on the financial and organisational challenges the trust faces.
"I have written to the hospital trust requesting that they now take the opportunity to answer all the outstanding questions on this case.
“For a start, what are the accusations leading to disciplinary action and dismissals? Why was the process so lengthy? And what is the cost of the investigation and disciplinary action?
"As a taxpayer-funded service there are legitimate public interest concerns the trust has to satisfactorily address and I would encourage them to do so in as open and transparent a way as possible."
Rosie Cooper MP calls for full disclosure on hospital trust’s disciplinary action against former senior executives
Following the announcement by Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust of the outcome of executive disciplinary appeals, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said: "I am pleased this lengthy investigation into...
Responding to concerns over proposals for the 'downgrading' of accident and emergency services at Southport and Ormskirk NHS Hospital Trust, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said:
“This information on proposals to downgrade local A&E services was published in November 2016. There is no new information from reports over recent days, merely it is a review of all STPs nationally.
“I raised my concerns in a parliamentary debate alongside Southport MP, John Pugh, back in November.
“The fundamental problem with Sustainability and Transformation Plans is from the beginning they were put together in secret. Local residents have been totally excluded from the decision-making processes.
“Still, NHS bosses have failed to adequately explain what they mean by ‘downgrading’. What this means in NHS management speak and what me and local residents understand it to mean can be completely different.
“Publishing this information without any explanation has led to anxiety and distress about the future of local health services. It also adds further pressure and begins to destabilise our local hospitals at a time when they are already under incredible pressure.
“This whole situation highlights the lack of accountability we now have within the NHS. Bosses seem to believe they can do as they please with taxpayer-funded services and don’t have to answer to anyone.
"I am obviously concerned about the future of the hospital and will be expressing my concerns when I meet with the chief executive of NHS Improvement in the coming weeks.
“I will always fight to protect local health services, which I have done in the past and continue to do as the people of West Lancashire should have access to a local hospital and local accident and emergency services."
Responding to concerns over proposals for the 'downgrading' of accident and emergency services at Southport and Ormskirk NHS Hospital Trust, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said: “This information on proposals...
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has cautiously welcomed the announcement by NHS Improvement that there will be a temporary pause as they review the transaction process for transferring Liverpool community health services to Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Responding to the announcement, MP Rosie Cooper said:
“I believe this pause is the right decision by NHS Improvement, especially in light of Bridgewater Community Healthcare’s Care Quality Commission inspection rating of 'requiring improvement' released yesterday (Monday 6 February 2017).
“Throughout this transaction process I have expressed my reservations about the capability and suitability of Bridgewater Community Healthcare in taking over these services.
“Having exposed the extensive management failures and bullying culture at Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust between 2010 and 2014, I am absolutely determined there is no repeat of the harm caused to patients and staff.
“An under-funded contract run by a trust with financial weaknesses, requiring improvement run by an inexperienced executive management team all feels very familiar when it comes to Liverpool community health services.
“I am cautious in welcoming this pause until I better understand its focus. Is it to review whether the current decision is actually in the best interests of patients and staff; ensuring the quality of care is right or is it to provide more time to ensure Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group don’t lose face having appointed Bridgewater Community Healthcare as their preferred bidder in the first place despite all the warning signs?
“Members of staff who have seen their former poor, bullying organisation transformed for the benefit of patients and staff have contacted me saying they are terrified that they are now being moved against their will from the QE2 to the Titanic.
“It may be a good idea for NHS Improvement to consult Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust staff during this pause to get their views on the prospect of transferring to Bridgewater Community Healthcare.
“There is too much at stake to get this wrong again for the patients and staff involved in Liverpool community health services; commissioners cannot afford a repeat of their previous failures. I for one will be monitoring developments during this pause very carefully.”
Rosie Cooper MP statement on NHS Improvement’s temporary pause on the transfer of Liverpool community health services
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has cautiously welcomed the announcement by NHS Improvement that there will be a temporary pause as they review the transaction process for transferring Liverpool community...
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has accused the government of trying to fund high quality early years education on the cheap, which will see pre-school children being failed.
MP Rosie was speaking in a Parliamentary debate on Maintained Nursery School Funding on Wednesday 1 February 2017 when she made the comments.
Rosie also raised the issue again today (Monday 6 February) in the Commons directly with the Secretary of State for Education during Education Questions.
Maintained nursery schools are very much the jewel in the crown of early years education provision. Sixty per cent of these nursery schools are rated as ‘outstanding’ by OFSTED, which includes West Lancashire’s Moorgate Nursery School in Ormskirk.
In recent months government has been consulting on funding for the early years sector. Initial indications are that they want to fund all providers – maintained nursery schools, private nurseries, childminders, pre-school nurseries etc.- at the same funding rate.
This would be a fair funding regime if all providers had to operate by the same rules and standards. There are important differences which are not considered in the proposed funding reforms.
Maintained nursery schools provide early years education rather than just childcare. They are also schools and therefore must employ qualified teachers. Yet they are not funded in the same way as schools but instead through the early years funding formula.
Local authorities have the power to fund nursery schools on a different basis than other providers but they are under no obligation to do so following government changes in the funding of local authorities.
The government has offered maintained nursery schools transitional funding as the new funding formula is introduced but many schools fear this is not sufficient for the long-term to keep many nursery schools open.
Speaking after the debate, West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said:
“On walking into Downing Street the Prime Minister spoke about her ambitions for improving social mobility for all.
“If she wants to be true to her word and honour her commitment then she needs to end her obsession with grammar schools and invest properly in early years education.
“To date government has demonstrated a scandalous lack of understanding on the importance of early years intervention in improving a child’s life chances. In their consultation they even confuse childcare and early years education as if they are the same thing.
“Government needs to decide if they want good or if they want cheap early years provision.
“They can’t have good, cheap early years provision.
“Do we want the best possible start in life for our children or not?
“Currently this government is hurtling towards choosing not.”
Government trying to fund early years education on the cheap and failing children says Rosie Cooper MP
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has accused the government of trying to fund high quality early years education on the cheap, which will see pre-school children being failed. MP Rosie...