Barbara welcomed the young cancer patients known as the ‘Christie Crew’ to Downing Street.
The visit was part of a trip by the young people to Westminster to update Barbara on their attempts to improve the care and services for teenagers and young adults suffering with cancer.
In early September the Christie Crew launched the ‘Don’t Hide Wear With Pride’ ID Card Scheme which allows card carriers to enter bars and clubs despite the fact that the hats, headscarves or trainers they wear as a result of their treatment may not be part of the dress code.
At a meeting with Ministers and other MPs, the Teenage Cancer Trust has pledged that if the scheme proves successful in Manchester they will provide vital cash to roll the scheme out nationwide.
“It was a pleasure to welcome these young people to Westminster. We had a very productive meeting at which the Christie Crew were able to engage with Government Ministers, other MPs, and representatives from both Christie Hospital and the Teenage Cancer Trust.
“The news that the TCT are willing to provide the funding to roll out the scheme nationally is an excellent development, and I will contiune working hard to champion the work of the Christie Crew in Parliament.”
During the day Barbara was also able to raise the work of the young people and the quality of patient care provided by Christie Hospital at Prime Minister’s Questions, with the Christie Crew watching from the gallery of the House of Commons.
“Will my right hon. Friend join me in welcoming the opening next weekend of the critical care unit at Christie hospital?
“A further welcome development at the Christie is a young adult oncology unit. Patients and former patients of the unit are visiting Parliament today.
“Will my right hon. Friend congratulate the patients and staff of the unit on their ID card scheme? They have funding nationwide to launch the scheme, which will help young patients whose appearance is altered by their treatment and ensure that door staff of public houses do not turn them away because of their dress code.”
Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott, who was standing in for Tony Blair, replied that he supported the scheme and the developments at the hospital was excellent news for patients.
Christie Crew member Rochelle Thamina, 20, of Little Hulton said:
“I’m really pleased we’ve had the opportunity to go to Parliament. It’s really great that so many important people want to give their time and support to such a good cause that many people will benefit from across the country.”
Barbara with the Christie Crew outside 10 Downing Street