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Barry Sheerman has been the Labour and Co-operative MP for Huddersfield since 1979. He is passionate about education, skills, and the next generation, having chaired the House of Commons Select Committee on Education and Skills from 2001-2007, and then the Children, Schools and Families Committee from 2007-2010. He currently chairs the Skills Commission which has recently led a series of major inquiries on the skills needs of the future economy.
Barry Chairs the Parliamentary Advisory Council on Transport Safety (PACTS), which was founded in the debate about the compulsory wearing of seatbelts in the fronts of cars in 1981. Barry was instrumental in moving an amendment to the 1981 Transport Act which made seat belt wearing a legal requirement. Recognising the importance of the European dimension in transport safety, PACTS was a co-founder of the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC), based in Brussels, which brings together representative organisations across the EU.
Barry has a major interest in the environment and sustainability: he chairs the All Party Sustainable Resource Group which has recently published reports on Remanufacturing and Exporting Waste, as well as the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Industrial Sustainability. He is also an active social entrepreneur having initiated over 40 social enterprises in his career, including Policy Connect which runs a number of parliamentary groups and inquiries, and the John Clare Trust.