Tackling crime across the district will take centre stage this week as two MPs hold Government to account and demand action in the first Blue Collar Conservative conference aimed at taking politics to the people.
Shipley MP Philip Davies and Keighley MP Robbie Moore are taking part in the week-long event, which will be streamed live each evening, featuring members of the public, business leaders and others discussing a different subject each night, which will then be answered by a Cabinet Minister. It will be followed by a live question and answer session on the subject with different MPs sitting on the panel.
Issues covered will include economy, transport, education, levelling up, tacking crime and sentencing, Covid-19 and Brexit following a tour around the country speaking to people on the streets about things that matter to them.
Both Mr Davies and Mr Moore are part Blue Collar Conservatism, which aims to turn politics on its head, get ministers to answer the public’s concerns and ensure policy is shaped from the street up.
Mr Davies said: “BCC has always been about taking politics to the people, getting outside the Westminster bubble and hearing what people really have to say. There will be some important discussions throughout the week and I encourage anyone wanting to take part to do so. I am passionate about tackling crime and am firmly on the side of the victims and ensuring criminals receive tough punishments. I look forward to our question session on Wednesday, hearing from the Home Secretary as she responds, and hearing what she is doing now and what she plans to do with the information from the evening in future to shape policy.”
On Wednesday Mr Moore will feature in the broadcasted video on crime before taking part in the live question and answer session with Mr Davies and Tatton MP Esther McVey, who heads the group in Westminster.
Mr Moore said: “I am honoured that BCC chose Keighley to host this event. Keighley is a wonderful place to live and work, with a strong manufacturing and engineering base with so much to offer. However the area does have deep-rooted problems with crime, especially, but not exclusively, drug and drug gang related crime issues. Unfortunately, we also have an underlying problem with grooming which gone on for years. These issues need addressing head on with a tough stance being taken. Speaking with many residents and local businesses, crime is having a detrimental impact on Keighley and the image of our town, and it is time we focus on dealing with this as well as raising aspirations. I am glad that the BCC is supporting me with highlighting this matter at the very top of Government and I look forward to working with the Home Secretary on this.”
The conference, in conjunction with the Daily Express, will be live streamed each evening. It was hoped hundreds of people could have attended the conference but to comply with Coronavirus restrictions the event is having to be streamed.
Home Secretary Priti Patel, Chancellor Rishi Sunak, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson and Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove will each answer a session.