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I recently enjoyed visiting Blenheim Care Home in Melksham to speak with staff and residents about the current issues that are affecting them – we covered a range of topics but it was not surprising that Brexit dominated!
It is easy for certain sections of society to feel that their views are not being heard, which is why I think visits to care homes and schools etc are so important.
I have recently re visited Knorr-Bremse’s Melksham facility where new investment is not only driving the business forward, but also the skillsets of those who work there. One trainee I spoke to had started as an apprentice and was being trained to Master’s level – all while learning and earning on the job at Knorr-Bremse. I am a strong advocate of apprenticeships which enable young people to become experts in their field without the financial constraints of university debts and it is crucial all Wiltshire children know the wonderful opportunities available on their doorstep.
I was also keen to hear Knorr-Bremse’s view of the Brexit process and how this is affecting their business. Like the vast majority of businesses I have visited, the Knorr-Bremse management team asked me to support the Withdrawal Agreement and want a deal to provide stability and enable them to have confidence to remain and grow in the UK. Interestingly they stressed that a second referendum would be just as bad as a ‘no deal’ for business because it would continue the uncertainty.
With business in mind, a key focus of mine has been the ongoing situation at Cooper Tyres and the recent confirmation that there will be 300 redundancies at their Melksham site. My priority now is to ensure that the redundancy process is as fair and compensatory as possible so that those affected are able to stay on their feet and look for work elsewhere. To help the job-hunting process, I have called for local businesses to take this opportunity to utilise the skillsets of those who have been made redundant, so that local businesses can grow and those affected can get back onto their feet as soon as possible.
If you would like to get in touch to discuss your issues or concerns please email Michelle.donelan. firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01249 704465.