Sunday, 12 October 2008

Catch up - reshuffle

Quick whizz through past week or so... Reshuffle - glad Douglas is still at DFID which means I am too. Pleased that some of my favourite Ministers have been promoted. Big Vern has moved up a notch at the Home Office, which means I can now lobby him about more Vice Squad officers for Bristol, although it's a local decision about deployment of resources really. Bill Rammell has gone to the Foreign Office, which is what he wanted. Both good blokes.

Shame about Tom Harris, and not just because he was due to visit Bristol on October 28th. (And no, I don't think it was because of the blog). Not sure if Lord Adonis, the new Rail Minister, will be coming instead. I like Andrew too, actually - was a bit wary of his credentials when I first met him, but he's been very good on Bristol schools and is nice and unassuming.

Liam Byrne deserves his promotion as he's very capable, but it means I have to start again on some of my immigration issues. On which topic - met Ben from the Still Human Still Here campaign during the week, who has been camping out in Parliament Square. Don't agree entirely with their objectives - if people have exhausted all their legal rights (which includes appeals, further representations, often new applications, more reps, judicial review) and had decent representation, and have been offered assistance in returning home, but haven't taken it up, then we do have to draw the line somewhere. But I'm happy to work with them regarding failed asylum seekers who are unlikely to be deported in the foreseeable future, such as Somalis. Had been talking to Liam a lot about this, and he'd offered to visit east Bristol too. Now have to start working on Phil Woolas, the new Immigration Minister.

No comments: