Rt Hon John Whittingdale OBE MP

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Parliamentary events and visits

Beer Champion Award

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John, who champions Britain’s beer industry, has been honoured with a unique award in Parliament.

He was presented with a certificate and souvenir pump clip by the British Beer & Pub Association and SIBA, the Society of Independent Brewers. The special award is a joint initiative from the BBPA and SIBA, who wanted to recognise the role of MPs who supported Britain’s national drink during the 2010-2015 Parliament. It recognises acts of advocacy in Parliament, in votes, supportive motions, and debates.

In particular, the award highlights John Whittingdale’s support in securing historic consecutive cuts in beer duty in the 2013 and 2014 Budgets, helping to safeguard jobs and investment, and keeping beer affordable for consumers.

Brigid Simmonds, Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “MPs of all parties made a huge difference in achieving the historic duty cuts in 2013 and 2014, and deserve our thanks and recognition. We are delighted to honour their contribution to this achievement.

Mike Benner, Managing Director of SIBA, comments: “We are enormously grateful to the MPs whose support for British beer over recent years has created a far more optimistic outlook for our industry. As a result of the consecutive beer duty cuts, our members feel more confident about the future of British brewing and are investing in their business and creating local employment, with an estimated 1,600 new jobs in SIBA breweries last year. “With at least one independent brewery now operating in almost every parliamentary constituency, the Beer Champions announced today will I’m sure be invited to celebrate their success in their home town, with a pint of great, locally brewed beer.”

 

NSPCC Share Aware campaign

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John Whittingdale attended the NSPCC’s Parliamentary Reception on Online Safety to support the charity’s new ‘Share Aware’ campaign which aims to get families talking about socialising safely online. The NSPCC has created a new online guide to help inform parents about the risks of different social networking sites used by children. This comes after an NSPCC survey revealed that three quarters of parents surveyed found sexual, violent, or other inappropriate content on SickipediaOmegleDeviant Art, and F my Life within half an hour of logging into the sites.

An NSPCC panel of more than 500 parents from Mumsnet reviewed 48 social networking sites and said all those aimed at adults and teenagers were too easy for children under 13 to sign-up to. On more than 40 per cent of the sites, the panel struggled to locate privacy, reporting and safety information. Those aimed at younger children, like Club PenguinMoshi MonstersPopjam and Bearville, fared better and parents did not find any unsuitable content on them. The NSPCC also asked just under 2,000 children and young people which social networking sites they used. Talking to strangers or sexual content were the main concerns mentioned by children. But they also thought the minimum age limit for signing up to many sites should be higher, despite saying they’d used the sites when they were underage.John is pictured with Felix and Hassan who took part in the survey.

 

 

Prospects for Ukraine Post-Election

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On 28 October, a panel discussion was held at the House of Commons focused on prospects for Ukraine following the 26 October parliamentary elections in the country.

Chaired by John Whittingdale MP, Director of the British Ukrainian Society and Chairman of the British-Ukraine All-Party Parliamentary Group, the panel discussion was jointly organised by the Ukraine Crisis Media Centre and the Russia Studies Centre at The Henry Jackson Society.

The panel examining the outcomes of the parliamentary elections included Nataliya Popovych, Co-Founder and Board Member of Ukraine Crisis Media Center, Dr. Olga Onuch, a Senior Lecturer in Politics at the University of Manchester, Dr. Andrew Wilson, a Senior Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations, Sergiy Sydorenko, Editor-in-Chief of ‘European Pravda’, Vasyl Myroshnychenko, Director and Head of the Ukrainian office of the Ukrainian-British City Club, and Dr. Andrew Foxall, Director of the Russia Studies Centre at The Henry Jackson Society.

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Ukraine - John Whittingdale’s interview to “Evropeiska Pravda”

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“Evropeiska Pravda” met with John Whittingdale at a panel discussion focusing on Ukraine which took place this Tuesday at the House of Commons. Being Chairman of the British-Ukraine All-Party Parliamentary Group, Mr Whittingdale co-organised that panel discussion. He was very open and honest in this interview taken just before the start of the event.

While some of Mr Whittingdale’s comments might not be received well by many readers in Ukraine, his views apparently reflect the general mood among pro-Ukrainian politicians in the EU, and particularly in London. For instance, he stated Ukrainians should not expect liberalisation of the visa regime with the UK in the foreseeable future.

We also discussed the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. While Mr Whittingdale admitted that Russian army invaded Ukraine and called the pro-Russian militants ‘terrorists’, he also noted that ‘Kyiv should not expect significant military support from the West.’

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Launch of the Global Friends of Ukraine

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Global Friends of Ukraine held its official launch at the House of Commons in London on 23 October. It was attended by over 100 distinguished guests, including British MPs and Lords, Government officials, professionals, investors, leading experts, musicians and writers.

The reception was hosted by John Whittingdale MP, Director of the British Ukrainian Society and Chairman of the British-Ukraine All-Party Parliamentary Group, who also became Patron of Global Friends of Ukraine. Addressing the audience he said: “We will continue to give all support to the people of Ukraine and their rights to determine their own future.”

The Founder of Global Friends of Ukraine, Maria Tymofienko, explained the aims and goals, structure and projects of the new organisation. “I set up Global Friends of Ukraine to facilitate and co-ordinate projects and to work closely with the Government and NGOs in Ukraine to channel and deliver international support to where it is most needed. We must turn Ukraine’s strong international support into practical steps and positive action,” Ms Tymofienko said.

Global Friends of Ukraine (GFU) is a UK-registered organisation bringing together the many friends of Ukraine from around the world – people from all walks of life – who share a common concern for the current situation in Ukraine and who want to offer their help and support.

 

 

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