golden postbox
image courtesy of Dr. Caroline Brown

For a lot of us, Christmas is a time for getting in touch – and we’d like you to add your MSPs to your list this year. You don’t necessarily need to send them a Christmas card, but you could drop them an email (it’s dead simple if you use Write to Them – and they keep track of who replies and who doesn’t…)

The reason isn’t just to wish them a happy new year, but to let them know that there will be a debate on Active Travel on January 7th next year – and that you’d like them to attend. We’re not entirely sure why the government has called the debate (it might mean an announcement of some kind) but we need MSPs there to ensure that the government are held properly to account. For instance, you might want to suggest your MSPs ask the ministers what they’re really spending on active travel, once all the smoke and mirrors have been cleared away – or perhaps how they plan to make their beguiling vision for active travel into a reality. You may want to point out how investment in active travel doesn’t just benefit cyclists, but everyone. There may also be local issues you’d like your MSP to raise, we leave it up to you. The more personal the emails you write, the better.

All this emailing of MSPs might seem a bit of a waste of time, but we do know that all politicians pay attention to what’s in their mailboxes. As well as educating them about the issues that really matter to you (and past debates have shown that some MSPs get it – and some need a little bit of help). You can also be sure that they’ll be getting plenty of emails about fuel prices, parking, congestion and other issues dear to the average driver’s heart. Let them know that the things we would like to see are also important to at least one of their bosses (that’s all of us voters, by the way) out there. After all, if you make the effort to write, you’ll likely make the effort to vote. And that does tend to concentrate politicians’ minds wonderfully…

‘Tis the Season