Bury North MP James Frith has added his voice to the campaign to introduce proxy voting in Parliament.
At present MPs must march in person through voting lobbies for every vote. Close votes mean MPs who have just had babies or who are very ill have been forced to go to Parliament to vote, with some brought in in wheelchairs. James was forced to head to London to vote on Brexit just days after his fourth child was born last autumn.
Speaking in Parliament, James said:
“Too often, it is left to women to make the case for this. It is as much dads like me who need, and believe in, the change that is going to come. I welcome the tone that the Leader of the House has taken. Once this has been put to a vote—I appreciated her assumptive tone—and we have decided that it is to become standard practice, do we really, as a human organisation, given that bodies make babies in nine months, need to take any longer than that to come up with this process by which we can reflect the rest of the country and, indeed, most of the world in doing our job even though we are parents?”
James wrote on proxy voting in his book of essays on Parliamentary reform, launched with the support of Commons Speaker John Bercow last week.
Watch James’s speech below