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#SexMatters - MP letters

(51 Posts)
Badgerthebodger Sun 18-Mar-18 20:04:47

Hello everyone, I’ve volunteered to be one of the team to help get the Sex Matters campaign off the ground. Over the next few days I’m going to get some template letters together by collating all the excellent posts people have shared and refining them into separate templates on different issues which people can use to write to their MP.

Writing to your MP is a hugely important step - unless we speak up our voices will not be heard. Let’s stand up and be counted, let’s be a nuisance, let’s make our objections and worries heard. I’ll come back and post letters once I’ve fine tuned them.

Could I also ask you to PM me if you have had a positive response from your MP? I would like to get a list together of gender critical MPs as I think there’s safety in numbers and it might be useful to know who is supportive. I am not going to put the list on here as it will inevitably result in a pile on but I would be grateful if you could let me know who is with us.

Many thanks!
Badger

BoreOfWhabylon Sun 18-Mar-18 20:13:46

I emailed mine last week. Have heard nothing back.

Some template letters would be good as follow up.

Bumblebzz Sun 18-Mar-18 20:59:16

My female Labour MP wrote me back a very disappointing (stock) response.

GabeIsShocking Sun 18-Mar-18 21:05:32

It would be helpful historically to compile MPs that are against women retaining sex exemption spaces.

mimivanne Sun 18-Mar-18 21:17:13

My male Labour MPs entire comment was that 'it was about equality'
He took a long time to send these few painful words,in contrast to the considered replies he invariably sends.

LongWeek Sun 18-Mar-18 21:19:34

Hi badger.
Whilst template letters are a good start, if MPs start getting lots of letters/emails the same they don't have at all the same weight as individually written ones.

I work for an MP. Template letters eg from 38 degrees do not get a reply. We get hundreds every week.
Individual emails & letters all get an individual reply. Some of it might be based on a stock response, but specific individual questions are answered.

Obviously MPs all work differently, but it's common for standard template emails to not get a response- the MP might put something in their website, but it is likely to be the stock party line, not necessarily their personal opinion.

I wish every single person who is gender critical would write to their MP- at work we have had hardly any emails about GRA. But please do encouragr people to make them personal.

My (male) MP is not in favour of self ID. He's not alone in this. Sorry, not naming them!

Bumblebzz Sun 18-Mar-18 21:25:30

Hi LongWeek

Do MPs dislike being tweeted about such topics? My MP is VERY active on twitter, all about safe, popular, vote-winning issues. e.g. saving a local sports ground.
I haven't seen anyone ever tweet her a question about anything controversial or difficult.

Thanks

2rebecca Sun 18-Mar-18 21:32:04

I emailed Ruth Davidson about gender self id and got a strange email back where she said this was a matter for the UK parliament not the Scottish parliament.
I presume she isn't unaware of the Scottish parliament consultation and that the Tories and SNP are arguing about whether the Scottish parliament can do anything about gender self id or not.
She didn't express an opinion.

HerFemaleness Sun 18-Mar-18 21:35:52

@Longweek, are emails less likely to be responded to than a letter?

Badgerthebodger Sun 18-Mar-18 21:42:30

Thanks @Longweek the intention is that people can use the template letters as a starting point and personalise them smile

Absolutely agree that people need to write in! And I also completely understand not wanting to name individuals, I know that it would not be in their favour. If anyone does let me know about supportive MPs it will not be publicised, it would just be helpful as a reference point if we need it in future, perhaps to reassure MPs that others do feel the same. I don’t know a lot about the mechanics of politics so perhaps I have it wrong, but I was thinking someone might feel braver raising it in something like a debate? blush sorry not really got further than that. Just thought they might feel braver if they knew they weren’t the only one.

BingBongSong Sun 18-Mar-18 21:53:37

I wrote to my Labour MP a couple of weeks ago, on paper. No response yet. Not sure how long I should wait before I badger him?

Tbh, I'm not sure if my letter will even be read by him? Do they have people screening their post? I was rather critical in my letter of some things which had been said to me by the Labour Women's Forum when I went to speak with them on the issue.

Bumblebzz Sun 18-Mar-18 21:57:20

@BingBongSong mine took quite a while to reply, I sent a couple of chasers. She probably was trying to get hold of the official response as she certainly didn't write the response herself (someone else posted their Labour MP's response on this forum and it was 99% word-for-word identical).

Badgerthebodger Sun 18-Mar-18 22:01:32

That’s interesting that Labour MPs are giving an identical response. There is obviously a very strong force within the party to try and shut down any questioning of the dogma

Hrumphing Sun 18-Mar-18 22:02:19

Longweek Do you mind if ask you - what are the confidentiality rules governing speaking to your MP? I work in a profession affected by this and would like to bring up some anonymised work examples but would want my MP to be careful with the information - it wouldn't identify any clients but might identify me simply by mentioning by field of work.

Badgerthebodger Sun 18-Mar-18 22:04:37

Can I also ask for responses from Scottish MPs please? It’s really helpful to know their thoughts as the consultation is under way.

Also, if anyone has had a successful meeting with their MP it would be fantastic if you could share the details, either on the thread or by PM. What did you say, what did you take with you etc.

SexMatters Sun 18-Mar-18 22:06:50

Hi I am just checking into this thread to say that Badger is genuine.

Thanks Badger

LongWeek Mon 19-Mar-18 08:05:35

I'll try to answer a few questions..
In our office emails & letters are treated exactly the same with the same priority- they're all put on our system for a response from the MP.
One of the staff team draft a response, he reads it & if happy it's printed & signed. If not happy, he rewrites it all befor sending.
There are stock responses to things that can be used- we tend to use them a little bit, but it out most to ensure we are directly answering the question.

Twitter- we do not respond directly to constituents on Twitter- it's too short. They are asked to email instead. And we don't answer non cobstituents- there are strict rules about that. So an MP wants your address & postcode to check you live in their area. If you don't provide this, you may not get an answer.

Confidentiality- MPs are bound by the same data protection laws as anyone else. They are privy to a lot of personal info about people (benefits details, NI numbers
, personal details - all only when the person gives them to us) the MP and their staff would be able to see all of this. If they released it, or their staff did they'd be breaking the law.
MPs can only act on people's behalf with their express permission. You could certainly tell your MP something and ask it not to be mentioned by them if that's what you wanted.

We aim for responses to have been sent out (all by letter) within 10 days. More than 2 weeks we feel behind.
If you're thinking that seems slow.. The MP gets up to 300-400 emails a day... Not a from constituents, but all need dealing with! When there's S controversial campaign, it goes up to 500ish.
Hth

Bumblebzz Mon 19-Mar-18 08:12:39

Thanks @LongWeek that is useful to know. I certainly did have to provide full details of name and address before my MP would/could respond to me.

Freshlylaidterf Mon 19-Mar-18 08:34:40

badgerthebodger
Re Scottish MPs
Wrote to my MP three times over 6 months last year. Got a reply the third time - saying basically how great the SNP are on trans rights/equality Even enclosed a leaflet on what SNP are doing re trans rights !!! Didn't address any of my questions.
I will try again though iof a template is posted. Although do agree template ok for a framework but writers should personalize

LongWeek Mon 19-Mar-18 08:35:39

Disclaimer- all MPs run their offices dufferently- some only ever send stock response, some do all their own emails & just fire back a quick comment on email.
Some will give answers on Twitter.

There is one who apparently doesn't use emails...
If you write to an MP you can ask your letter/email to be forwarded to the minister responsible for their answer too...

LongWeek Mon 19-Mar-18 08:38:05

In some issues MPs simply haven't thought about it, so the party line is what they will send out. SNP tend to stick to party line on most things.

Government ministers stick to party line as that's a requirement of being on the 'payroll'. If they are going to disagree with the government they have to resign their ministerial position. This may mean they will give a party line response at the moment, and change their mind later if there's actually a vote.

PiggyPoos Mon 19-Mar-18 09:47:53

I've not written to my MP which is something I need to do, so I'd be happy to report back.

Lovelyusername Mon 19-Mar-18 09:52:09

I have written to Caroline Lucas, Ambar Rudd, Maria miller, Justine greening and the Labour Party.

CL replied really nicely but for the greens ‘transwomen are women’ penises and all.

Ambar Rudd sent a long reply but that will I will Name change and share here. She had all sorts of justifications for the primogeniture rules and said she didn’t think trans right and women’s rights were in opposition. Which is worrying. Yeah let’s call all the penis people women and give the sex protected rights for women if they have a fucking DRESS ON.

BlackeyedSusan Mon 19-Mar-18 15:22:22

I think it would be helpful for you to give a couple of openrs/sentence styles here and there so we can pick and mix and not be all the same. (for the time challenged of us. ) just as a starter. some templates I have seen so far seem a bit too not me and I struggle to get the thinking time to make it more me.

you could pick and mix from letters others have sent/posted if they could be collected in one place.

writing to candidates in the elections would be useful too.

XXHelenaXX Mon 19-Mar-18 16:03:42

Lovelyusername
Please can I see that? She is my MP.

Where are the templates please?

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