From time to time, your MP will visit an early childhood centre in your electorate to demonstrate that they are an active participant in their community. If they are planning to drop in at your centre, hold them to task by seizing the opportunity as a platform for starting a conversation about the value of early educators.
Prior to the Visit
Prepare several questions ahead of time for your group to ask.
Deliberate as a staff about what questions you would like to ask your MP. Thematically, questions should focus on a limited number of issues to maximize impact: keep these themes to the gender wage gap and the undervaluing of early education as a female-dominated sector. Prepare 5-10 of these questions and hand them out to your group ahead of the meeting.
Set the scene.
Emblazon your centre with posters, paperchains, pinwheels and other creations that support your fight for equal pay. This will allow your message to infiltrate any photographs or footage your MP features in during their visit. For more ideas on how you can decorate your centre, check out our Get Crafty page.
During the Visit
Make Your Voices Heard.
Ask your centre manager if you can arrange for your whole staff to be in the same room as the visiting MP. When the MP speaks to your centre, ensure that everyone in group is prepared with the questions you have put together. Interrupt your MP if you need, to ensure that floored is opened for questions. Once you’ve got the ball rolling, remember the following guidelines:
Stick with the prepared list of questions. Don’t be afraid to read it straight from the printout if you need to.
Be polite but persistent, and demand real answers. MoCs are very good at deflecting or dodging questions they don’t want to answer. If the MoC dodges, ask a follow-up question. If they aren’t giving you real answers, then call them out for it. Other group members around the room should amplify by either booing the MP or applauding you.
Keep the pressure on. After one member of the group finishes, another should raise their hand or step in, to keep up the momentum.
Record and Share!
As mentioned in our page on Electorate Events, have somebody record your MPs visit. Post pictures, videos and your thoughts about the event to social media. If you wish to approach the media with a story about the visit, check out our Contacting the Media page.