MP’s column - Way forward

As a county with such a strong and flourishing agricultural sector, Lincolnshire is one of the breadbaskets of England.

The technological advances of the past century have allowed mankind to grow and produce more food than was ever imagined possible. This ‘green revolution’ combined with the widespread expansion of economic freedom has lifted the circumstances of many around the world such that poverty is less frequent now than almost ever before.

Chemicals play an important part in this scientific miracle and glyphosate is one which has proved exceptionally useful to our farmers here in Lincolnshire.

British scientists have investigated the effects of its use and their results, alongside the research of colleagues across Europe, show that glyphosate is not a harmful substance. Its approval for use, however, is under the control of the European Union, which has not yet renewed its authorisation beyond the end of this year.

I have written to the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs, relaying testimony from Lincolnshire farmers as to how necessary glyphosate is and strongly urging her to continue with her efforts to secure its rapid re-authorisation. This is one of many issues which show how much more freedom and ability to adapt to our own circumstances we will have once we leave the European Union within the next two years.

We also have a proud heritage of fishing in this country, which has been scandalously assaulted by our participation in the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy. The result has been both a human and environmental disaster, as all evidence shows.

Following the Referendum, Her Majesty’s Government has committed to withdrawing the United Kingdom from the Common Fisheries Policy and will craft a new fisheries regime in its place. Ministers are considering very carefully abrogating the 1964 London Fisheries Convention and thus asserting the country’s rights to the fish in our seas.

Care for those suffering from dementia is another cause of great concern.

The Government remains committed to the policies announced in the Challenge on Dementia 2020 document launched in 2015. This sets out a vision for the transformation of dementia care, support, awareness, and research to be completed by 2020.

Last year, an Implementation Plan was published supporting the 2020 Challenge which was put together by a wide array of partners across the care and medical sectors. A joint declaration has also been issued setting out improvements in the quality of care after sufferers have been diagnosed with dementia.

With well over half a million NHS staff members having already received specific dementia training, further training opportunities will be rolled out by the end of next year.

Over 100,000 social care workers have also been plugged in to dementia awareness training which should help identify problems early on and improve the quality of care.

With Great Britain also leading the way in medical research, we are ensuring that people suffering from dementia in this country receive care and attention of an absolutely world-class standard.

Sir Edward Leigh MP

Gainsborough Constituency