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Tips for contacting your MP

The only way we will win this campaign is if we can get the government to listen to us, understand what we're saying, and take the bold action needed to address our claims.

We all have a role to play.

Within our powerful, united collective of nearly 30,000 primary teachers and school leaders across the motu, we each have our own personal stories of life as a teacher in 2019. It's those real life stories that we want you to share with your local MP.

This page is here to help you think about the best ways of communicating your story to your MP.

Crafting your message

Useful themes

Our jobs and the problems we face are complicated - and that can be really hard to communicate.

That's why we developed easy to understand themes at the very start of our campaign - it's time to address workload, learning support, and recruitment and retention (pay and career path) issues so every child receives the personal attention they need to learn and thrive.

We need time to teach and time to lead so that children have time to learn.

We need teaching to be a valued and sustainable career.

We've been really successful at getting these messages out to the public. Our recent polling shows 79% of the public agrees teachers need more time, 83% think we need a pay rise, and 91% want more support for children with additional needs.

When contacting an MP, think of how your story can illustrate one or more of these key themes.

Keep it simple

You can't cover everything in one contact.

The most powerful messages are often the shortest. Think of a story you have that might illustrate some of our broader themes and tell it as simply as possible.

Maybe you have an example of the pressures you face in school or catching up on work at home. Perhaps you have a story of a compromise your school has had to make. Or perhaps you've faced financial hardship because of rising living costs.

When telling your story - always end with an ask: What are they doing to improve the offer to teachers?

Put children at the centre

We put children at the centre of what we do every day - it's important we keep doing that when we communicate.

The crux of our campaign is that we are overworked and underpaid. But it's important we always remind people that we're not just in this for ourselves, but for the country's children.

When communicating with your MP, tell them how the issues you're raising might have an impact on children's learning, or let them know the lengths you're having to go to in order to make sure children's learning isn't impacted.

Understand your audience

MPs get a lot of correspondence, but they're more likely to be receptive if you've taken the time to learn more about them.

Take a bit of time to find out more about your MP and the issues they care about. And keep it polite!

If your local MP is in opposition (National), ask them what they're doing to put pressure on the Government. If you're talking to a Government MP (Labour, NZ First or Greens), ask them what they are doing to push for change with their colleagues.

Ask your MP to write to the Education Minister, Hon Chris Hipkins, urging him to improve the Government's offer to teachers. Ask them to report back his response.

How to contact your MP

Email

Use this tool to find your electorate MP or a minister and send them an email.

Your message will be sent from this address
If you don't know the electorate you can find it here.

Social media

These days, MPs are highly engaged on social media, so this is a great, direct medium to communicate with them. Find out who your MP is, then search for them on Facebook or Twitter and send them a message or public post. Make it even more engaging by including a photo. Use the hashtags #ItsTime and #KuaTaeTeWā

If you don't know your electorate, find it here.

Phone

Sometimes a good old fashioned phone call is the best way to communicate. To talk to an MP or their office,  find out who your MP is, then phone Parliament on 04 817 9999

If you don't know your electorate, find it here.