Taking the Time to Care for Family
For some of the more observant of you, I may have seemed quiet for a couple of days, and there's a reason for that. Before we all knew that there was going to be a snap General Election I had already promised with one of my sisters to look after my elderly dad for a week while his partner had a couple of weeks' holiday with her family. Then along came Theresa May to put a spanner in the works. So I've been carrying out my promise for a few days before my three sisters take over. On the positive side, my dad gets to see all of his daughters rather than just the two of us, and I get time to read the draft manifesto!
Families are very important, it is why I get so angry with the constant Tory attack on the NHS. It is currently all you hear in the media, but you have to ask why? I don't think the NHS is failing - what is happening is that costs are going up, and the treatments the Health Service can offer are increasing, and funding does not keep pace.
When you have someone in your family who needs that bit of extra support for health, mental health or social care it brings everything into focus. The NHS has been and still is absolutely a national wonder and we should do everything we can to keep it healthy itself. The last thing we want is an American-style private health system which excludes people from getting the treatment they need, when we already have a health service free for all that need it.
With me away the campaign has continued. Teams of volunteers have been out all over the constituency - in Whitleigh, St Budeaux and Ernesettle, and in Manadon, Leigham and North Prospect. As well as talking to you on the doorstep, they have been delivering a letter from me about who I am, what I believe, and highlights from Labour's manifesto to deliver a Britain that works for the many, not just the few. I look forward to being back in Plymouth again on Monday to carry on the campaign, carrying a really personal reminder of why Labour fights for the NHS, and why I am standing for Parliament to defend it.