Journalists give evidence to Lords committee on public engagement

May 7, 2009 at 12:51 pm Leave a comment

An inquiry investigating how the House of Lords could improve public understanding of its work and role has heard evidence from senior journalists.

Click here to watch the evidence session

The Lords Information Committee inquiry People and Parliament is looking at how the House of Lords, and Parliament generally, can do more to engage with the public, and ensure people are aware of what is happening in Parliament and feel able to contribute to its work.

Yesterday it took evidence from David Hencke, chairman of the parliamentary press gallery and Westminster correspondent for The Guardian and Jason Beattie, deputy political editor of The Daily Mirror.

One of the Lords of the Blog, Lord Norton of Louth, also gave evidence along with John Hipwood, political editor of the Wolverhampton Express and Star and Peter Riddell, assistant editor of The Times.

The Committee is running an online forum to listen to the views of the public as part of its inquiry and has invited the public to submit their thoughts as video responses on UK Parliament’s YouTube channel.

This is the first time submissions can be made to a Committee in a format other than the written word – a departure from the usual process of submitting evidence in which individuals and organisations provide written statements on the issue being investigated.

Lord Renton of Mount Harry, Chairman of the House of Lords Information Committee, said:

“This inquiry gives the public the chance to tell us in Parliament how they want to be involved in our work.

“Decisions are made in Parliament everyday that affect everyone in the country and it is important people feel they can be involved in that decision making process.

“We would love to hear from as wide a range of people as possible on how they would like to interact with Parliament.

“By using YouTube, and the web forum, we hope we will get comments from people who might not have submitted evidence to a Parliamentary inquiry before.

“If you have an opinion on how Parliament and the House of Lords responds to the public please get in touch and let us know.

“Parliament has made significant efforts recently to become more open to the public both at Westminster and online but I’m sure there are areas where we can still improve.

“This inquiry is your chance to tell us what those areas are.”

The People and Parliament web forum can be found here:

A YouTube video of Lord Renton launching the inquiry.

You can also submit your thoughts on video to the committee via YouTube by following the Post a Video Response link.


Entry filed under: Committees, Lords. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

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