Ian Austin MP

Labour MP for Dudley North

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Dudley MP Ian Austin is calling for action to help homeowners who are being ripped-off by maintenance fees on new-build developments.

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Estate charges, also known as service charges, management charges, or maintenance fees are now a common feature of many new housing estates. The public green spaces have been retained by the developer or sold to a managing agent, rather than being adopted by the local authority. Residents are then charged inflated fees for its upkeep.

Homeowners currently have very few powers to dispute the fees or change supplier if the service provided proves inadequate.

It is estimated that over 1.3 million households across the country are affected, and given the government’s ambitions for house building, many more soon will be.

Ian Austin said:

“It’s really shocking that homeowners on new-build estates are being charged over-the-odds by private companies for the upkeep of shared facilities on their estates.

“These fees are high, rising, uncapped and unregulated, and do not result in quality service. There is little transparency about the fees, and homeowners have virtually no rights to contest them, even if services are not provided.

“This isn’t fair on people in Dudley, and I’ll campaign for these charges to be regulated, for homeowners to have more say in what happens to their shared facilities and for management companies to ensure these shared facilities are of an adequate standard for residents.”

Austin calls for action on unfair charges for new-build homes

Dudley MP Ian Austin is calling for action to help homeowners who are being ripped-off by maintenance fees on new-build developments.

Local Dudley residents Zaqirah Mughal and Natalie Cutler came to Parliament this week to shadow Ian Austin MP around the corridors of power, as part of a UK wide event aimed at encouraging more women to stand for election.

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The initiative saw more than 250 inspiring women from all parts of the country descend on Westminster to highlight the need for more women in politics. Today only one in three politicians are women.

On 21 November 1918, just days after the Armistice, the Qualification of Women Act was passed to allow women to stand for Parliament for the first time. Today’s shadowing event is a celebration of this Act and a call for more women to come forward.

Since then just we have only had 491 women MPs compared to 4503 men. At this rate it will take another half century before women catch up. Today’s ‘Ask Her To Stand’ event was aimed at closing the gap.

To be truly representative Parliament should reflect the people it serves and at the moment it doesn’t. Laws and regulations will never properly reflect the needs or diversity of our country and communities until the numbers are evened up.

The day was organised by campaigners Frances Scott, 50:50 Parliament, Helen Pankhurst and the Centenary Action Group, the Fawcett Society and the Jo Cox Foundation.

The women spent time shadowing their MP and seeing first-hand what it means to be a Member of Parliament. They were invited to take part in workshops and listen to talks and Prime Minister’s Questions and to get a full picture of what it means to stand for political office.

Ian Austin MP said:

“We need more women to stand for public office. At all levels in politics, from the grassroots to Westminster, we have two men for every one woman. I hope today inspires great women like Zaqirah and Natalie to stand for election to give us all broader and more representative decision making.”

 

Local women shadow Dudley MP in Parliament

Local Dudley residents Zaqirah Mughal and Natalie Cutler came to Parliament this week to shadow Ian Austin MP around the corridors of power, as part of a UK wide event...

Dudley MP Ian Austin is calling on the government to think again about how treatments for Haemophilia sufferers are commissioned on the NHS.

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Treatment for Haemophilia is currently provided by frequent injections of replacement engineered clotting factor concentrates. However, new longer lasting treatments are available that could be easier to use, allow patients to be more active, provide better protection from bleeds and reduce the occurrence of joint damage in the longer term.

Furthermore, a range of new treatments for haemophilia such as gene therapy and other novel therapies such as Emicizumab, Fitusiran and anti-TFPI inhibitors are expected to be licensed over the coming years.

Austin is concerned that the way NHS England will tender for and commission the treatments for haemophilia, which are heavily based on cost, will restrict access to these new developments.

He has signed a cross-party letter to Health Secretary Matt Hancock asking the government to look again at the way the NHS will commission treatments for Haemophilia A and B to make sure the patient is put first.

Ian Austin said:

“I’ve been contacted by constituents in Dudley who suffer from this rare disorder. It is a constant concern for them and their families as a small cut could lead to a bigger problem.  

“Unfortunately, research shows that the UK spends the least and has the worst treatments outcomes in Europe. This is a serious problem which needs to be addressed.

“I want the government to look again at the way treatments are commissioned and tendered, so that the patient is the priority and the long-term health benefits are considered.

“This is exactly how politics should work. It’s my job to listen to my constituents and push for changes to help them.”

Austin calls for action to help sufferers of rare blood disorder

Dudley MP Ian Austin is calling on the government to think again about how treatments for Haemophilia sufferers are commissioned on the NHS.


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