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Get your voice heard – top five tips for writing to politicians

Posted by Rosie Rogers - 17th March 2017


In the era of emails and texts, receiving a letter in the post is rare. But that just makes it even more powerful, says our political adviser Rosie Rogers.

Whether we voted for them or not, the people elected to represent us in local councils, national assemblies, and Parliaments in Westminster, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, are accountable to us as their constituents. People like you and me have given them their power, and they have a duty to represent our views.

Building a relationship with a local politician, so you can talk to them about the issues that matter most to you, is a powerful way to help shape political debate. But, how do get your voice heard? Politicians get hundreds of emails every day, so when a handwritten letter arrives at their constituency office it can really stand out and there is much more of a chance that they will read it themselves and respond.

Here are my top five letter writing tips and see below for a good example letter:

  1. They work for you screenshotDo your research. Type your postcode into www.theyworkforyou.com to find out who your local politician is, their voting record, and what kinds of issues they’re interested in. If you use Twitter, start following them online and get to know them. The more engaged you are with their work, the easier it will be to find common ground and develop a positive relationship.
  2. Know your ask (and put it at the top of the letter!). Make sure you know your ask- whether it’s to write the Minister who is making the decision you want to influence or asking them to an event- know your ask and make sure to put it at the top and bottom of the letter so it’s really clear what you are asking.
  3. Keep it local. Politicians want to hear how issues are affecting your community, and most respond to emotions more than statistics. Even if the issue you want them to address is national, or international, try to make it relevant to daily life in the place where you live.
  4. [Young activistThe personal touch. You want to stand out from the crowd, and grab your politician’s attention. A hand written letter is one effective way. You could type it, then add your signature by hand, but the personal touch really does make all the difference. Once in a letter to my MP about protecting the Arctic I included a drawing of a polar bear that my cousin did- the MP responded and remarked on the drawing- so getting creative can help you stand out too. Remember -being friendly and polite is completely essential.
  5. Send it by post. If you’re writing to a UK Member of Parliament, send your letter to their constituency office address, rather than their parliamentary one. You’ll find it listed on www.parliament.uk/mps-lords-and-offices/mps/. And don’t forget to request a reply. Good luck!

Watch the video: Rosie Rogers offers advice on how to lobby your MP

Below is an example of the letter that someone in our Political Lobby Network sent their local MP about fracking last year.

Dear {your local politician},

Firstly, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to meet me and other constituents at the mass climate lobby last month. (always nice to start with a positive and a thank you if you can!) You showed a sincere belief in human-made climate change and a genuine appreciation for our position. I’m sure we will take up your invitation to meet again on this issue in the future.

During the lobby we discussed fracking; you outlined your support for the process and noted the strong regulatory framework in the UK. This framework included the “outright ban” on fracking activity in National Parks, Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). I was shocked to see the recent proposals by DECC, the Department for Energy and Climate Change to weaken protection for these vital areas.

As my MP, I’d like you to write to Amber Rudd to ask her to scrap the proposed fracking regulation changes to the Infrastructure act. Please do provide me with her response. The proposed regulations will bring in a raft of worrying changes but most concerning to me is the removal of provisions excluding fracking from SSSI. Only last week I enjoyed a day in the Woldingham & Oxted SSSI just south of our town. These areas are crucial not only for the wide range of rare species that live there but also as green, natural space for the public to enjoy. As you noted in one of your recent campaigns, our green spaces really are precious and so I hope you’ll join me in calling for the upmost protection for these areas.

I look forward to hearing from you and seeing the response you get from the Minister.

Yours Sincerely,


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About Rosie Rogers

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I'm Rosie and I am a Senior Political Advisor at Greenpeace UK.

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