MYC members held a meeting with Member of Parliament for Chatham & Aylesford Tracey Crouch. This offered us the chance to discuss a whole range of topics with main points of discussion outlined below!
When asked a question about the MPs not being in the Chamber when ‘important’ topics were being debated Tracey took the time to outline how this isn’t a fair reflection on what MPs are doing. MPs will be sitting in committees, dealing with case work or attending other significant meetings, therefore it is important to recognise that just because an MP isn’t on the green benches at a particular time, does not mean they aren’t working tirelessly for their constituents. She went on to describe how voting doesn’t commence until 10pm making being an MP far from a 9-5 job.
A question was asked on whether many in politics are career politicians. She went on to say that this isn’t a fair assessment because while people go into politics for many different reasons, the job of an MP comes with many downsides, discussing the death threats received and the need for security.
When asked if Votes at 16 would be inevitable Tracey Crouch spoke in favour of the German system whereby 16-17 year olds vote in regional elections (local council) which has a great influence on issues affecting this age group, then 18 year olds would vote in national government which has a bigger influence on this. She went on to talk about the importance of all parties creating policies which appeal to young people.
Additionally the ‘Curriculum for Life Campaign’ a UKYP Campaign was given endorsement as a sensible policy for providing young people with sound financial, political and social education.
Finally Tracey Crouch talked about the time she abstained against the government’s policy to raise tuition fees, describing the whipping process and recounted a phone call that told her she would not be a minister to which she replied “I was elected to represent my constituents, not to be a minister”!
In summary we were happy to welcome Tracey to our small meeting and appreciate her time taken to visit us.