Here's the latest Argus column by Newport East MP Jessica Morden:

THE new prime minister must reverse cuts to front line policing and invest in giving our police the resources they need.

Boris Johnson has now acknowledged that people want more officers in their neighbourhoods to protect the public and tackle crime, but he supported and served in governments which enacted brutal cuts to the police.

Police budgets were cut by £2.7 billion in real terms between 2010 and 2018, leaving police numbers at their lowest level in 30 years.


Gwent Police saw its budget reduced by more than 40 per cent, leading to the loss of hundreds of officers and staff.

So far what the government has proposed is not a proper investment in policing, but rather the gradual replacement of officers who were cut on their watch.

The Conservatives have shown a total disregard for our police over the last nine years, and unless they commit to an overhaul of their police funding strategy to ensure that forces are properly resourced, recent pledges on recruitment will represent further empty promises from a prime minister with a track record of throwaway commitments.

- As vice-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Steel I’ve joined other MPs in calling on the new business secretary to work to create a strong and sustainable future for steel.

It’s vitally important that the government works to ensure that the UK reaps the benefit of the significant opportunities that exist for our steel industry, including electric vehicles.

The government must meet the challenges facing the sector head on: sky-high energy costs, steel dumping, procurement, and our future relationship with trading partners in Europe.

- I was pleased to attend the first meeting of the ‘Statue for Lady Rhondda’ team – a campaign led by local women fundraising for Newport’s first statue of a named woman.

The campaign has been initiated by Julie Nicholas, who led the drive for a blue plaque for Lady Rhondda on Risca Road.

South Wales Argus:

Lady Rhondda

Llanwern’s Lady Rhondda was a trailblazer who dedicated her life to the pursuit of equality for women in politics and society.

She fought a valiant campaign for women to take their seats in the House of Lords, was the first women president of the Institute of Directors and even survived the sinking of the Lusitania.

It would be great to see Lady Rhondda’s work and legacy celebrated with a statute in her home city.

For updates on the campaign follow @statue4LR on Twitter.