WILL YOU BE ASKING YOUR NEW MP TO JOIN THE APPG ON ME?
We are asking this question because The MEA, along with Action for ME, forms the Secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group on ME at Westminster.
This means we help to administer the work of this parliamentary group in relation to suggesting speakers, organising meetings with ministers etc, preparing agendas and minutes, and putting forward concerns and questions that require a parliamentary answer from a government minister.
Anyone who has followed the work of the APPG on ME at Westminster will know that we have a small and very supportive group of parliamentarians from all political parties in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
And that the APPG on ME continually covers all the key issues of concern – benefits, research, services – that are of importance to people with ME/CFS.
This is why people with ME/CFS need to contact their new MPs to ask if they will join the APPG on ME when they return to Westminster after the election.
The MEA has already produced a letter outlining key concerns that can be sent to all election candidates:
Once the election is over, we will be modifying this letter into one that can be sent to your new MP, along with a request to join the APPG on ME.
One immediate challenge after the election when it comes to reforming the APPG on ME may be finding an MP who is willing to take over the role of Chairmanship due to the fact that Annette Brooke, our well-respected previous chairman, has retired from parliament at this election.
So if anyone knows of an MP who is likely to have a special interest in ME/CFS, possibly as a result of having a relative or someone they know well having ME/CFS, please let us know – because we really do want to increase the active membership of the APPG on ME and get more MPs involved.
And if you do contact your MP about the APPG on ME, and receive a reply, please let us have a copy.
More information on All Party Parliamentary Groups: www.parliament.uk/about/mps-and-lords/members/apg/
Dr Charles Shepherd
APPG on ME Secretariat