Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

MOTHER MP HAS VOTE COUNTED IN ABSENCE ; Shadow Minister Given Permission Not to Attend Lobbies in Order to Stay with Her Baby.

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

MOTHER MP HAS VOTE COUNTED IN ABSENCE ; Shadow Minister Given Permission Not to Attend Lobbies in Order to Stay with Her Baby.

Article excerpt

MANCHESTER MP Lucy Powell said it felt 'liberating' after she was allowed to stay with her baby boy and vote without having to attend the lobbies for the ~rst time.

fie shadow childcare minister welcomed the 'progress' for mothers as she was granted use of the parliamentary convention of 'nodding through' during a vote on a Labour amendment to the Finance Bill.

fie convention has traditionally been reserved for MPs who were within the parliamentary estate but too ill to reach a lobby to vote.

Ms Powell's vote was counted in her absence, allowing her to remain within Parliament with her one-year-old baby, Tom.

fie Labour MP for Central Manchester said on previous occasions she has either had to leave her children with colleagues or even a 'random stranger' so she could walk through the lobby when the nursery was closed or no babysitter had been organised.

On whether this was the ~rst time the nodding through procedure had been allowed for an MP to look after their child, Ms Powell said: "I'm not sure if it's the ~rst time this has been allowed - it's unclear if it's happened before or not. …

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