Gordon has called on the Prime Minster and her Government to make the Universal Credit helpline free - saying the system was letting down some of his most vulnerable constituents.
He brought up the issue at Prime Minsters Questions after being contacted locally by the Salvation Army and Streetlife about the problems claimants were having around Universal Credit and benefit sanctions - some of whom are suffering from mental health problems.
In his question to Theresa May, he said: "Does the Prime Minister know that the Universal Credit process is failing my constituents. Locally the Salvation Army and Streetlife report that vulnerable Blackpool people are juggling a month’s money without help. That there are unfair sanctions for people with mental health issues, that a six-week wait for money is causing more stress, and that there is a phone helpline that Citizens Advice says can cost claimants 55p a minute and take 39 minutes to answer.
"Can she start by getting them a freephone number?"
Mrs May failed to answer Gordon's specific ask on the issue of helpline charges, only saying "The DWP is constantly looking at the scheme and how it is operating around the country to ensure that any problems that people raise are addressed".
You can see the exchange in full by clicking here.
Gordon has called on the Prime Minster and her Government to make the Universal Credit helpline free - saying the system was letting down some of his most vulnerable constituents. ...
Gordon has committed his support to help Cancer Research UK save more lives in Blackpool and across the UK.
Gordon, also a member of the a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Ovarian Cancer, attended a event held by Cancer Research UK in Westminster last week (12 July) to find out how he can keep cancer at the top of the new Parliament’s agenda.
Over the course of this Parliament, two million people will be diagnosed with cancer across the UK, so Cancer Research UK needs political support in order to continue to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer. Survival in the UK is still lagging behind other countries and too many cancers are diagnosed at an advanced stage, when they are harder to treat successfully.
At the event, Gordon met some of Cancer Research UK’s dedicated volunteer Campaign Ambassadors. There he was told around 970 people are diagnosed with cancer each year in Blackpool South, underlining the need for him and other MPs to join the fight against the disease.
He said: “We must not underestimate the devastating impact cancer will have on people in Blackpool now and in the future, so it gives me hope to hear that Cancer Research UK’s pioneering research is turning the tables on the disease.
“The outlook for new and better cancer treatments in the UK is bright. However, it is clear that there is a critical role for politicians to play in helping to prevent and detect cancer earlier and bring innovative new treatments to patients faster.
“One life lost to this terrible disease is one too many and that’s why I’m supporting Cancer Research UK in their mission to beat cancer sooner.”
Matt Davies, Cancer Research UK’s Head of Public Affairs and Campaigning said: “At Cancer Research UK, we’re resolute in our ambition to see 3 in 4 patients surviving cancer by 2034. To achieve this we need cancer at the top of the political agenda and so we’re grateful to Gordon for helping to highlight the importance of research and action in beating the disease.
“Survival in the UK has doubled in the last 40 years. But there’s still so much more to do and we cannot do it alone.
For more information please visit cruk.org.
Gordon has committed his support to help Cancer Research UK save more lives in Blackpool and across the UK. Gordon, also a member of the a member of the All...
Gordon has been showing his support to the Blackpool Jazz and Blues festival which took place over the weekend at the Winter Gardens and St John's Square.
It was the first time Gordon had been to the event and he was "proud" to show his support for the two day event organised by local businessman and musician Stephen Pierre.
Gordon said: "I was really proud to support such a great event and want to congratulate Stephen and his team for their work. All the money raised went to the Trinity Hospice which is a very worthwhile local cause."
Stephen said: "Promoting live music, showcasing aspiring talent and supporting charity, can only be a positive for the community. Most importantly it’s a creative way of improving the town’s reputation both locally and on a national level and I am really pleased with the way it has gone. Thanks to everyone for their support."
Among the acts involved this year were BBC Young Musician of The Year 2015 award winner Alexander Bone and his band and veteran jazz pianist Frank Flynn, while trumpet ace Terry Reaney led his 18-piece Blue Bird Big Band as he celebrated his 80th birthday in the Spanish Hall on Saturday.
Gordon has been showing his support to the Blackpool Jazz and Blues festival which took place over the weekend at the Winter Gardens and St John's Square. It was the...