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I've long been a huge fan of Emmaus, a charity which creates a community for people affected by homelessness and rough sleeping. There's such a strong ethos of self reliance, community support, and entrepreneurship that people who have failed to respond to other pathways off the streets can often do really well at Emmaus.

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I love the work they do so much that I've even visited communities in France when I was on holiday a few years ago. France is where the organisation was founded. And when I was a government advisor back in 2006/7 I brought a cabinet minister to visit the Portslade community.

So I was thrilled to join the Mayor of Brighton and Hove and so many others to celebrate the 20th birthday of Emmaus Brighton and Hove.

It's well worth a trip there yourself. They have a stunning set of shops selling refurbished goods and a lovely coffee shop. There's a link at the bottom of this post.

Happy birthday Emmaus, here's to your next twenty years! Best wishes, Peter

Happy Birthday Emmaus!

I've long been a huge fan of Emmaus, a charity which creates a community for people affected by homelessness and rough sleeping. There's such a strong ethos of self reliance,...

During the election I made a pledge that I would take on an apprentice if I became your MP so I'm really pleased to introduce you to Nic who joined the team just before Christmas.

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I'm obsessed by making sure young people get the best start in life and a smooth transition from education and into a career. Public services need to get it right for everyone the first time around, but especially for young people. That's why I chair the all-party committee on further education in parliament and work very closely with the council in Brighton and Hove.

Our council is creating 1,000 apprenticeships. It has the most ambitious plans to end long-term youth unemployment in the whole country, something we should all be proud of - I certainly am. Councillor Tom Berwick kicked off this work and did so brilliantly and it's now being championed by Cllr Dan Chapman who is putting his heart and soul into it. I'll do anything to support people to make this dream a reality in our city.

I've been challenging the government on apprenticeships too. They have promised to create 3 million but I want to make sure more effort goes into quality not just quantity, otherwise the value of apprenticeships will be undermined. I've also challenged them to change the target to apprenticeship finishes, not starts.

So before many of you rightly challenge me, let me assure you that Nick is doing a Level 3 apprenticeship. And because I benefit so much from his contribution, and the basic pay for apprentices is so low, I'm topping up his salary to the living wage so he has the chance to enjoy life a little and save as well as just get by.

Before joining the team Nic was working in a call centre locally. Now he's doing a business administration apprenticeship with me and as well as the formal training we're making sure he benefits from all of the development opportunities you get in a busy office like mine that enjoys 450 emails most days, dozens of letters, calls, and people popping in to ask for help or expressing an opinion.

We all totally love having Nic around and I can promise you that getting an apprentice for your workplace will be brilliant too. If you want to look into it drop me a message or email and I'll let you know how to do it, it's really easy. All the best, Peter

The Apprentice!

During the election I made a pledge that I would take on an apprentice if I became your MP so I'm really pleased to introduce you to Nic who joined...

I was very proud of our parliament today and of the Speaker, John Bercow. He announced in the most forthright way imaginable that President Trump will not be welcome to address parliament during his state visit. I was astonished, and over-the-moon, to hear the Speaker say explicitly that this was because of the president's views on women and race.

The reason British people care so much about this is because we love America and the values its founding fathers enshrined into their constitution. We fought side by side and at key moments in time and have been there to create the global institutions, like the UN, that have liberated millions of people from poverty and despotism.

We can respect American people without bending our knee to a person who has distain for many of the values we hold so close to our hearts.

Its right that we welcome Donald Trump to our country to hold talks about how our country's can work together, but in my view it was wrong to offer a full state visit. It now seems that Theresa May was in such a blind panic to be the first foreign leader to meet him that she offered things she had no right to.

To us the sight of her being led by the hand by Trump was offensive. Now after the Speaker's words today she will look ridiculous to the American administration too.

This all has a deeply serious point to it. I have argued all along that we are rushing headlong into Brexit and this is further evidence that Theresa May and her ministers are not thinking, considering, and acting strategically. They are panicking, clutching at straws, and amidst this I want you to know that I will always put our community first and stand up for everything that's wonderful about where we live.

I hope you enjoy the speaker's shockingly frank words. I was proudly in the chamber when he delivered them and burst into applause when I realised what a bold and brave thing it was he was doing. I'm now touching back to the chamber as we are debating amendments to the Brexit bill until 1am tonight and I don't want to miss out! All the best, Peter

You can see the Speakers speech Here.

Thank you Speaker Bercow

I was very proud of our parliament today and of the Speaker, John Bercow. He announced in the most forthright way imaginable that President Trump will not be welcome to...

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