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Newark MP Robert Jenrick: More opportunity for home ownership

Column by Newark MP Robert Jenrick.

Creating more opportunities for home ownership is central to this government and that is why this week as Secretary of State I announced a landmark £9bn for our Affordable Homes Programme, ensuring good quality housing for all as we build back better after the pandemic.

This huge funding package will make the ambition of owning a home a reality for families by making it realistic and affordable. We are also ensuring tens of thousands of new homes for rent are built in the years ahead, including social rent, so those on the lowest incomes can enjoy good quality, secure rented homes, built and managed by reputable providers.

Robert Jenrick.
Robert Jenrick.

Parliament has been on its summer recess but was recalled over the developing situation in Afghanistan.

First and foremost, I want to thank all those 150,000 UK men and women who served in the conflict right until the very end, with those from 2 Para protecting Kabul Airport as we evacuated thousands of British Nationals and those who have helped our government over the previous 20 years — from those helping in our embassy to interpreters who worked alongside British forces in Helmand, like Ahmadullah and his family who I met in Nottinghamshire this week, as part of Operation Warm Welcome.

Although some might feel disheartened with our withdrawal, it's important to hold our heads high.

After the terrible attacks of 9/11 where 2,977 lost their lives, including 67 British nationals, we took action to make sure a tragedy like this did not happen again.

As part of a NATO mission where for the first time Article V was triggered by the United States, we entered Afghanistan on a mission to extirpate Al Qaeda in that country and to do whatever we could to stabilise Afghanistan. Since that date no terrorist attack has been launched from Afghanistan on the west. The combat mission ended in 2014 and progress was made.

Alongside this core mission, we worked for a better future for the people of Afghanistan.

The heroism and tireless work of our Armed Forces contributed to national elections, as well as the promotion and protection of human rights and equalities in a way that many in Afghanistan had not previously known. Whereas 20 years ago almost no girls went to school and women were banned from positions of governance, now 3.6m girls have been in school this year, and women hold over a quarter of the seats in Afghanistan’s parliament.

This is a legacy to be proud of.

Over the summer it’s been great to get out and about in the constituency. This last month I went on my annual summer surgery tour across the constituency. It was great to meet so many people for a chat and take up issues on your behalf.

I would like to make a special mention to Collingham Parish Council on being awarded a Quality Gold Award. This is an outstanding achievement as the first in Nottinghamshire and a reflection on the great service being provided.

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