Meet Your MP Tool Kit: Step 1 – Introduction & find your MP
This kit will help you meet with your local Member of Parliament or Senator. It’s full of tips and tricks to help you request a meeting, get prepared and make sure your time with your representative is as productive as it can be!
Why does speaking out matter?
Right now Adani and many of our politicians are progressing with a dangerous plan that will damage our Great Barrier Reef and climate.
When community voices are weak they can get away with it. When our communities are active and engaged we compel our governments to do the right thing.
This is why it’s critical that you, and people across Australia, reach out to your elected representatives so they know our concerns and advocate on our behalf.
Why meet with your MP or senator?
Politicians receive a lot of emails and letters. But when a local voter takes the time to personally call or visit face-to-face, they’re much more likely to listen.
At first the idea of meeting with a politician might seem daunting, or simply ‘not your cuppa tea’. But remember:
- Politicians are ordinary people, with families, work pressure – and often a mortgage too;
- They represent you and should want to hear your views – not just take your vote. It’s a critical part of democracy that the people we elect to represent us do just that;
- They need to hear from ordinary Australians like us – not just industry lobbyists.
Your elected representative represents YOU! So make sure they know your views and ask them to advocate on your behalf.
In the January 2015 State Election, Queenslanders voted to protect the Reef. Since then, a new Labor Government has been sworn in including the first Queensland Minister for the Great Barrier Reef!
The Queensland government made election promises to protect the Reef, which include:
- Not using taxpayer money to build a rail line for a private commercial project.
- Ensuring that dredging does not go ahead until Adani has demonstrated its project has financial closure.
- Reducing the risk of shipping in the Reef’s waters.
- Reducing Queensland’s carbon emissions.
Why the project cannot go ahead:
- The Reef is suffering from its second severe bleaching event in two years. We need to limit global warming now to stop rapid ocean temperature rises, which is caused by the mining and burning of fossil fuels – especially coal. The coal burnt from the Carmichael Coal Mine will release 4.7 billion tonnes of carbon pollution into the atmosphere, which will accelerate global warming;
- The Abbot Point coal port will need to be expanded, requiring the dredging of 1.1 million cubic metres of seafloor in the World Heritage area;
- Hundreds more ships will plough through the Reef’s waters;
- Our taxpayer money could be used to give Adani a $1 billion soft (low interest) loan if the QLD Premier breaks her election commitment of not giving taxpayer money to the project. [The Federal government is considering giving Adani a $1 billion loan to fund a railway line that will connect the Carmichael mine to the Port of Abbot Point on the Reef coast. The public money will be given to the Queensland government to distribute to the project. The Premier can say no to the money and this uphold the election commitment, which is not to fund the project.]
We need the Queensland government to live up to their word and protect our Reef – but we are running out of time!
As early as June the Federal government say they will make the decision on whether to give Adani $1 billion to build their railway link. We only have a few short weeks to act to ensure the government knows we do not want any of our taxpayer dollars given to a polluting billionaire. We need as many people as possible in Queensland to meet their MP during our critical fortnight of action.
Step 1: How to find out who your local MP is
Who is my MP?
If you don’t know who your MP is, you can look them up via your address on the Electoral Commission Queensland’s interactive map [click here].
The site will bring up the electorate for your postcode. You can then use the Queensland Parliament website’s Member current list [click here] to find your MP and their contact details.
What if my MP is not with the ALP? You can still meet with them about our Reef – and in fact we encourage it! You can use all of the same arguments as to why you don’t want this project to go ahead to urge them also to oppose the project.
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