Michael's Latest Column

Now that the summer is over, it would be reasonable to think that MPs get back to their normal routine in Parliament. But no sooner have we started back in London, then there is a further interruption – this time for the various parties to have their conferences. As in previous years, the Conservative Party conference follows the other major parties, and this year it will be held in Birmingham. We are still lobbying to bring conference back to Dorset!

The Party conference is a good opportunity for me to meet with other MPs and groups to discuss a rage of national issues. My main priority at conference however, is to meet with a variety of organisations, businesses and charities who can help or develop links with constituents in Mid Dorset and North Poole. These may include formal meetings with businesses such as BT to discuss poor broadband provision in the constituency, or round table discussions about youth employment and apprenticeships with national charities and universities. I will also spend a large proportion of my time in more informal discussions on a wide variety of issues, such as with the Alzheimer’s Society, supporting real ale producers, discussions about rural and farming issues, and housing policy.

I am also using some of the time to visit Israel as part of a delegation of MPs. I will be meeting with both ruling and opposition Israeli politicians and business people, and also with Palestinians, and visiting the West Bank. Since being elected, many constituents have contacted me about Israel and the many issues surrounding the area, and I am sure that the visit will develop my understanding of the complicated security and humanitarian situation there.

Closer to home, in London I will be getting involved in the usual workings of parliamentary business; meeting with ministers to discuss constituents’ concerns, scrutinising legislation and speaking in debates. I have recently contributed to debates in the House about the problem of financial scammers targeting elderly people, and about financial support for local councils when refugees arrive.

I will be continuing my regular surgeries around the constituency; please do get in touch if you would like to meet or need my help with any particular issue. You can email me on michael.tomlinson.mp@parliament.uk or contact my office on 01202 624216. You can also follow what I’ve been doing on Twitter @Michael4MDNP or Facebook www.facebook.com/michael4MDNP