Proposed General Election

The Prime Minister has announced her intention to seek approval under the Fixed-Term Parliament Act to ask the Queen to dissolve Parliament in advance of a General Election on June 8.

If this proceeds as proposed then w4mp will continue to operate as usual, and we will post information to assist with dissolution matters.

See this piece from The Guardian for background.

Fastlaners: Youth leadership programme

UpRising is now recruiting for Fastlaners – a free employability programme for young people aged 18-25! Co-founded by Rushanara Ali MP, UpRising is a UK-wide youth leadership development organisation which aims to open pathways to power for talented young people from diverse and under-represented backgrounds. Fastlaners is one of their projects; an 8 day interactive employment programme in Birmingham, Manchester and London designed to enable participants to identify career goals and develop the skills, networks, knowledge and confidence to secure fulfilling employment.

We’ve been given the following information about the programme:

Over eight days participants build their employability skills through a series of interactive workshops, mock interviews, mentoring sessions and networking events. Sessions range from 1-2-1 CVs, interview clinics, identifying paths to success and goal setting, understanding workplace culture, mock interviews and assessment centres and roundtable discussions and panels with professional employers.

Participants meet a range of speakers and businesses, who are invited to deliver sessions including senior figures from the public, private, charity and political sectors. Following the eight days of training participants receive three – six months of ongoing, one to one support to identify and apply for potential opportunities, prepare for interviews and then ensure the first few months at work go smoothly. They also have the opportunity to be matched with a young professional mentor from a career area of their choice to discuss aspirations and can draw upon their knowledge and experience of looking for and excelling at work.

Through our networks, we specialise in supporting young people to find careers in the public, political and charity sectors. Participating in Fastlaners can also lead into UpRising’s Leadership Programme and Environmental Leadership Programme. Through this programme we equip young people with the knowledge, networks, skills and confidence to reach their leadership potential and take social action on issues they care about. This programme offers participants a unique first-hand view of the way political, business, public sector and community organisations work together to shape our communities and the environment. Each participant is individually matched with a coach and a mentor who supports them on a one to one basis throughout their time on the programme. All participants work with other UpRisers to design and deliver a social action campaign on a local issue they are passionate about. As well as forming networks with senior figures, participants also build strong networks amongst their peers on the programme.

So if you are unemployed, aged between 18 and 25 years old, live in Birmingham, London or Manchester and are committed to finding your dream career in the public, private or charity sector, then Fastlaners is the programme for you. To apply, visit www.uprising.org.uk/apply. In the “How did you hear about us”, please select “Other” and state “W4MP”.

This is a free programme and UpRising will contribute to participant travel expenses.

Contact Details:

For further information, please contact:

Emma Henly – emma.henly@uprising.org.uk or 07943 632 046.

The APPG For Young Disabled People- Meeting on 19th April

The All Party Parliamentary Group for Young Disabled People are holding a meeting on Wed 19th April at 14:30 in the Attlee Suite.

Guest speakers at this meeting will include:

  • Susan Louwerse, Head of Guest Services at intu, who run over a dozen shopping centres across the UK
  • Chris Fry, solicitor at Unity Law, who represents disabled people who have experience discrimination
  • Mei-Yee Man Oram, co-lead of the Accessible Environments Team at Arup, an independent company providing services on the built environment
  • Joanne Connah, Development Officer at Changing Places/Mencap, who campaign for accessible toilets for disabled people

For further information and queries please contact heidi.allen.mp@parliament.uk

Building Works on Parliamentary Estate

Some routes through and entrances into the Palace will be closed for maintenance work over the Easter recess.

From Monday 10 April to Thursday 13 April there will be no entrance or exit through Chancellor’s Gate.

The House of Lords Members Family Room and Department of Facilities entrances in Chancellor’s Gate will be closed on Wednesday 12 April and Thursday 13 April.

The archway between Chancellor’s Court to State Officers’ Court will also be closed on Friday 7 April and from Tuesday 18 April to Friday 21 April. 

Helping your constituents with complaints about a public organisation

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman was set up by Parliament in 1967 to provide an independent complaint handling service.  The Ombudsman looks into complaints where someone believes there has been injustice or hardship because a UK public organisation has not acted properly or fairly or has given a poor service and not put things right.  They do this independently and impartially.

The service is free for everyone, but complaints about UK Government departments and other UK public organisations must by law be referred to the Ombudsman by an MP.  This is known as the ‘MP filter’.  Complaints about the NHS in England can go to the Ombudsman directly.

There is a dedicated section for MPs and their caseworkers on the Ombudsman website which provides further information about how you can help your constituents complain about public services.  It also explains how the Ombudsman works with Parliament to help scrutinise public service providers and hold them to account.  The link to this page is on the MP hotline list.

How do I refer a constituent’s complaint to the Ombudsman?  The constituent should download and fill in the UK government services complaint form and an MP then needs to sign it. Either the constituent or the MP can then send it to the Ombudsman, ideally via email.

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman also has a dedicated MP helpline telephone number and email address, which can be found on our hotlines list.

Changes to contact arrangements for MP Passport/Visa/Immigration enquiries

We’ve been told of a change in the  correspondence arrangements for MPs with  Her Majesty’s Passport Office and UK Visas and Immigration.

From 10 April the Her Majesty’s Passport Office (HM Passport Office) Parliamentary Correspondence Unit (PCU) and the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) MP Account Management Team will become a joint function.

This will result in a single point of contact for Members of Parliament to send their enquiries relating to UKVI, HM Passport Office, Immigration Enforcement and Border Force constituent cases.

The MP Hotlines list will be updated, and UK Visas and Immigration have written to individual MPs with more details

w4mp on Twitter @w4mpsite

After resisting the social media trends for years, we have succumbed and you can now follow w4mp on Twitter – our username is @w4mpsite because ‘w4mp’ is too short, it seems

w4mpsite twitter home page
w4mpsite twitter home page

Knowledgebank: What has growth been like over the last 3,000 years?

The Bank of England has published a KnowledgeBank guide entitled ‘What has growth been like over the last 3,000 years?’.

Here’s what they have to say about it:

“As an organisation, we are only too aware that economics can be a bit of a minefield, but we hope that through KnowledgeBank, we can start to change this.

“Our bite-size guides explain key economic concepts in a simple and jargon-free way.  We publish new content every month – so please keep your eyes open for our new guides, or sign-up to receive alerts for new content here.

“Quite simply, we want to bring economics to life for everyone, translating sometimes complex theories into simple everyday concepts.

“So far the guides have covered topics ranging from ‘What is the Bank of England doing to support the economy?’ to ‘Will there be another financial crisis?’ and ‘How much gold is kept at the Bank of England?’

“If you’d like to know more, or would like to give some feedback on KnowledgeBank, please feel free to contact us.
Kind Regards,

Parliamentary Affairs Group
Bank of England | Threadneedle Street| London EC2R 8AH |
E-mail: parliamentaryaffairs@bankofengland.gsi.gov.uk