Sharon Hodgson MP

Working hard for Washington and Sunderland West

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I am proud of the Human Rights Act which was passed through Parliament under the last Labour Government, as it protects basic rights that we all benefit from such as the right to be free from torture, the right to free speech, the right to a fair trial, the right to protest and freedom of association.

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It also includes responsibilities as well as rights, it maintains Parliamentary sovereignty and remains a crucial check against unaccountable state power.

That is why I believe this current Tory Government's decision to abolish the Human Rights Act would severely weaken the rights of British citizens.  I also believe that withdrawing from the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), from which the Human Rights Act was drawn, would be a shameful abandonment of Britain's historic respect for the rule of law and weaken our moral authority to demand change from those with weaker human rights records.

I therefore understand and share constituents' concerns about this Tory Government's intention to abolish the Human Rights Act and I can assure you that I will oppose any attempt to damage or dilute our human rights.

The Government are yet to spell out their precise plans in this area - indeed, they appear to be utterly confused about how they will now implement their manifesto commitment to scrap the Human Rights Act, or whether they will withdraw from the ECHR.

I can assure you that I, along with Labour colleagues, will carefully scrutinise any firm proposals the Government eventually bring forward on this and that I will continue to stand up for Britain's proud record on human rights.

Sharon Hodgson MP

last updated 31/07/2015

Sharon Hodgson MP responds to constituents' concerns over the Tory Government's decision to repeal the Human Rights Act

I am proud of the Human Rights Act which was passed through Parliament under the last Labour Government, as it protects basic rights that we all benefit from such as...

Sharon Hodgson MP responds to recent queries by constituents on tax avoidance and the related campaign on closing the “Mayfair tax loophole”.

Houses of Parliament

I agree that more must be done to tackle tax avoidance and I know from the many letters and e-mails I have received on this issue and the forthcoming Finance Bill that there is a real anger and frustration at the allegations that some banks, corporations and wealthy individuals may have engaged in aggressive tax avoidance and, in some cases, tax evasion.

At a time when this Government are proposing deep cuts to our public services and when households up and down the country are seeing their incomes squeezed, it is vital that we clamp down on tax avoidance and ensure that corporations, businesses and individuals pay their fair share of tax.  That is why I share the determination of my colleagues on the Shadow front bench to press the Government for stronger action, particularly at a time when we need to safeguard revenues for our public services.

The Conservative manifesto at the last General Election pledged to close £5billion of tax loopholes by 2017, yet I was disappointed that the Chancellor’s Summer Budget delayed this target till the end of this Parliament in 2020.  It is important that since 2010, the Conservatives have failed to tackle tax avoidance over the last five years and lack a credible plan to do so now.  Indeed, the amount of uncollected tax (the “tax gap”) has risen year on year under the Conservatives and has now increased to £34 billion in lost revenue.

This is why the Labour Party has pledged for a fairer tax system and will scrutinise the Finance Bill line by line as it progresses through Parliament to highlight the need for improvements such as: ensuring we close tax loopholes that cost the Exchequer billions of pounds every year; introduce tougher penalties for those abusing the tax system, and; ending the unfair tax breaks used by hedge funds.

Last updated 27/07/2015

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Issue as reported in The Independent 27/07/2015

Sharon responds to constituents' queries on closing the Mayfair Tax Loophole

Sharon Hodgson MP responds to recent queries by constituents on tax avoidance and the related campaign on closing the “Mayfair tax loophole”.

Sharon went along to meet with Gary Collin, General Manager of the Nissan Sports and Leisure Complex to hear about their exciting Washington Football Club “Community Family Festival” event on Sunday August 9th 2015.

Washington FC Community Family Festival 2015

Washington Football Club have been promoted from Ebac Northern League second division, to the first division recently.

So to celebrate this, Nissan Sports and Leisure Complex have organised a “Community Family Festival” event.

There is a small entry charge to cover costs – with a discount for advance booking.  Details on website below.

The event will include entertainment, a community tent and demonstrations, and a summer market with crafts stalls.

Local businesses and groups will showcase their products as well as community information.

For more information and to book tickets in advance visit: www.nissansportsandleisure.co.uk

or call 0191 415 2354

Washington FC website

Washington FC Community Family Festival 2015 - Nissan Sports and Leisure Complex

Sharon went along to meet with Gary Collin, General Manager of the Nissan Sports and Leisure Complex to hear about their exciting Washington Football Club “Community Family Festival” event on...


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