A guide to meeting your local MP

A guide to meeting your local MP

Welcome! You're here, which means you’re getting ready to contact your MP to discuss why modern slavery legislation matters to you. Meeting with your MP can seem daunting at first but remember that MPs are people just like us and it’s their job to listen to their constituents. They want to know what you think and what you’re passionate about - relax and have fun with the conversation!

Here’s a quick rundown on why meeting with your MP right now is so important.
  1. It’s an election year and we want to make sure that modern slavery legislation is prioritised by the Government that is elected. If elected again, the Labour Government have made a commitment to progress the modern slavery disclosure legislation they recently announced. However, this law doesn’t include due diligence, the requirement for companies to take action to address modern slavery risks. We know we need both disclosure and due diligence to make an effective law.
  2. The National Government have not made any public commitment to prioritising modern slavery legislation and it’s important that this is a core priority for them if they are elected.
  3. We want all political parties to prioritise modern slavery legislation.

Step 1: Find out who your MP is. Head to the Government’s MP map and type in your address. Under "Electorate information" you can click through to see who your MP is.

Step 2: Locate their contact details. Find the name of your MP in the MP Directory. In the "Contact Details" box outlined in blue, you can see their mailing address, phone number, and email.

Step 3: Email your MP to ask for a meeting.
You can either express your thoughts over email, or you can ask to book a meeting or a call with your MP. You can use this template as a guide but remember this is your letter so feel free to personalise it however you like! It’s always a great idea to do a bit of research on your MP to understand what is important to them and make connections for why they should care about modern slavery legislation. Your MP’s website or maiden speech is a great place to find this information.

Tēnā koe/Dear [Mr./Ms./ Dr. Last name]

My name is [your name] and I live in your electorate.

I’m writing to express my support for modern slavery law in Aotearoa New Zealand to ensure that we’re doing everything we can to stamp out slavery in our supply chains. I would like a commitment from the [your MP’s party] that you will progress the modern slavery bill that is currently being drafted if you are elected as government. I would also like a commitment that [party] will provide a clear timeframe on incorporating due diligence requirements into the legislation, as we know we need companies to not only report, but also take action if we’re to effectively address modern slavery.

I would love the opportunity to meet with you to explain why this is so important to me and why it is an issue that will be impacting my vote. Can you please let me know when you are available to meet?

Ngā mihi/Warm regards,
[your name]

Here is a table that shows the best ways to address MPs:

Step 4: Meet with your MP.
You’ve laid the groundwork, now it’s time for your meeting! This is when you can reiterate why addressing modern slavery is important to you, why you want modern slavery legislation in Aotearoa, and ask for the commitments you’re seeking.

A few tips:
  • You don’t need to be a subject matter expert or use fancy language. You are an expert in your own experiences, feelings and beliefs. Just be yourself and let your MP know why the law is important to you.
  • You can bring notes along for reference if you’d like!
  • It’s perfectly acceptable to say you don’t know the answer to a question. You can always offer to find the answer and get back to them via email.
  • It’s normal to feel a bit nervous before the meeting. Take a deep breath and think of the people you’re advocating for. You’ve got this!
As it’s election season, there are also plenty of election events going on across New Zealand! There are public meetings, meet and greets, street corner meetings, and coffee chats with candidates from all parties. In addition to a meeting with your MP, you can find an event near you and go along to ask for the party's commitment to modern slavery legislation!

Step 5: Send a short follow-up thank you email. Make sure to reiterate any commitments your MP made during your meeting and thank them for their time.

Step 6: We’d love to hear from you. Let us know how engaging with your MP went by filling out this quick survey.

Thank you for being an active citizen and speaking up for the fair treatment of workers everywhere!