Hope for the Future recently helped to set up a meeting with Ian Lavery, MP for Wansbeck, and his constituents. This was an interesting meeting for the campaign, as Ian Lavery is a former member of the UK’s Energy and Climate Change Committee and is therefore very knowledgeable about the topics we were discussing. The meeting was a great example of MPs and their constituents working together and having effective conversations that are mutually beneficial.
One of the constituents who attended the event said;
“This was my first time meeting with my MP. It was something I had never thought of doing, never mind having the opportunity presented to me. I suppose MPs often seem like distant people with important jobs that wouldn’t be interested in meeting normal people like me, but the meeting with Ian Lavery showed me that this is not the case. MPs are normal people trying to do their job well and are keen to have discussions and conversations with their constituents in order to help them achieve this.
“It was inspiring to hear my own MP talk so passionately about climate change. It is something that has had serious consequences in the area, with flooding damaging many homes and businesses in the recent years. I felt encouraged to know that the topic is something Ian is taking seriously and it has motivated me to engage more in politics. I am a student living away from home and have a different MP at university, so since the meeting I have set myself the challenge of writing to my MP to ask David Cameron to ratify the Paris Agreement before stepping down as Prime Minister.
“I would encourage anyone else with an interest in climate change to meet with their MP to have a constructive discussion. This will enable them to have their voices heard and to hear the views of the very person who represents them when important decisions are being made in the House of Commons. Thank you to Hope for the Future for enabling this discussion to take place!”
Ian Lavery commented on the event;
“I was delighted to attend the meeting last Saturday in Mitford. It was a pleasure to meet with people with such a passion and a desire to get Climate Change on the agenda and to secure the future of the planet. We covered many aspects of the topic from the failure of successive government’s energy policies to adequately prepare for the future, to the impact leaving the EU may have on emission targets.
“Climate Change, though extremely important, is often seen as a very dry topic. It is important that groups like this come together to discuss and to try to look at ways to taking the discussion into the mainstream. In the UK over the past few years we have seen an increase in occurrences of severe weather, not least affecting people living on the river Wansbeck. Sadly it is the increase in frequency of events like this that will push climate change up the agenda of people throughout the UK.
“Thank you for inviting me to speak and thank you to Sarah for organising, this is something that really needs to be continued.”
If you would like to write to your MP, you can use our template letter from the Hope for the Future website. To organise a meeting with your MP, please email Jo at firstname.lastname@example.org.