Westminster may be in recess for the summer but the work of a constituency MP is constant. Constituents contact my office every day with an enormous range of concerns and issues which they wish me to investigate, resolve or otherwise intervene in. Over the last week alone my team and I have:
- Sent out a record breaking number of letters to constituents on every conceivable topic from pesticides to Syria to internet privacy.
- Held meetings here in Westminster and in Mole Valley on issues which matter to residents.
- Begun planning the schedules of events for the various All Party Parliamentary Groups (policing, dental and skin) which I chair.
- Organised visits to Parliament and up the Elizabeth Tower for interested constituents as well as larger organisations located in Mole Valley.
- I will be on the ground in Dorking tomorrow meeting residents and discussing a wide range of issues at our planned tabletop. Cllrs Duncan Irvine and Howard Jones will be in attendance as will Dorking candidate and MVCA Deputy Chairman Roger Jones so please feel free to come along and either support us or raise any issue you may have.
Finally, I have noticed recently that the way people communicate with their MP is changing. Whereas it was once the case that letters were individual and personal to the sender, the situation now is that I receive an inordinate amount of circular content, some of very dubious veracity. I endeavour to respond to each and every one of these ‘campaigns’ but feel that too often they are sent frivolously. I have written to one individual nine times this month alone – excusably in response to the copious circular letters this person has emailed to me. Is this form of communication invalid when someone wishes to make a point to an MP? Absolutely not. Does it become harder to take an individual seriously who sends 9 different letters each starting with ‘I am deeply passionate about X…’? Absolutely it does.