Focus: Policy and Politics - In the Lobby - Dr Ian Gibson

Dr Ian Gibson began supporting Macmillan Cancer Relief and CancerBACUP soon after he became MP for Norwich North in 1997. He is a member of the All-Party Group on Cancer and was chairman of the Science and Technology Select Committee.

I have just tabled an Early Day Motion that supports Macmillan's Better Deal campaign, which raises awareness of the financial distress of people with cancer. In the first 24 hours, I got five signatures, and more MPs will join in the next days or weeks.

I also speak at conferences on behalf of the charities, support fundraising events and have the occasional coffee with them. Cancer is now seen as a chronic disease and the issue of quality of life has become more important. This is why Macmillan is so involved in palliative care, and others such as CancerBACUP have focused on issues of people coping with cancer at work.

I talk to them about issues raised by my constituents.

Macmillan gets in touch with me if there are questions it wants answered.

The Incapacity Benefit Bill is the one we were worried about, and now there is a risk that people with certain types of cancer won't get any benefits at all. This is why I support groups that campaign for all cancers to be treated in the same way. I am one of their champions in Parliament.

I got a Charity Champions Award two years running after I was nominated by Macmillan and CancerBACUP.

As chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Cancer, I am also involved with charities such as Cancer Research UK and the Leukaemia Research Fund.

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