Usually for my weekly column I would write about what I have been doing in my constituency or what has been happening there. I would also usually write about the big political issues of the moment and give my view.
However for this week I want to pay tribute to my colleague and friend Jo Cox MP.
The whole country was shocked on Thursday following the news of what happened to Jo when she was carrying out her duties on behalf of her constituents and her shocking and untimely death led to the suspension of EU referendum campaigning.
Can I thank my constituents for the messages of comfort that they have sent to me over the last few days. The Labour Party are a political party but if you are a Labour member or activist you will know how much it feels like being part of a family and I know the Labour Party and Parliament will feel a massive sense of loss following Jo’s death.
This is why on Saturday I held a vigil for Jo in Liverpool for our Labour family on Merseyside and others to gather together who wanted to take some time out to reflect on the tragic events of last week and to pay tribute to Jo’s life.
Vigils were held around the country for Jo who represented Batley and Spen. Her constituency was where she born and grew up and poignantly where she spent her final moments and her constituency was visited by Jeremy Corbyn, David Cameron and The Speaker of the House of Commons who paid their tributes.
On Monday Parliament was recalled so MP’s could pay their tributes and I spoke about Jo’s work around women’s rights and her global outlook of looking after everybody around the world. Those closest to Jo have set up a fund in her memory with the proceeds going to charitable causes that Jo supported. www.gofundme.com/jocox.
This is a fitting tribute to Jo who wanted to use her life to help people around the world and improve their lives. Jo was a passionate humanitarian and a champion for the most vulnerable. They have lost a wonderful champion in Jo but I know they will be grateful for everything she did do on their behalf. She had so much more to give but we are thankful for everything she did do and we will continue to fight against the hatred and prejudice that took her away from us. I’d also like to pay tribute to the bravery of Bernard Kennedy who was injured in his attempts to save Jo.