My Parliament Week 2012

Guest Contributor

Baroness D'Souza, Lord Speaker

As Lord Speaker, I’m honoured to be blogging at the beginning of the second Parliament Week today. There are many worthwhile events that will be taking place both here at Westminster and around the country.

On Monday, the House of Lords will launch its pilot outreach partnership with the charity Debate Mate, which uses volunteer university students to mentor secondary school students, encouraging them to develop debating skills.

I will give a lecture on international relations in Portcullis House on Wednesday 21, as part of the ‘Open Lecture’ series. I want to highlight the more ambassadorial side of my role and how I can help foster good parliamentary relations, by visiting and receiving counterpart Speakers and other parliamentarians from the Commonwealth, Europe and indeed from all over the world.

Children from London schools will visit Parliament on Thursday 22, under the “Somewhere to Read” initiative organised by the Public Engagement and Learning team and in support of the Volunteer Reading Help scheme. I’m going to read to them from one of my favourite authors – Ted Hughes – and am looking forward to hearing about their own reading too.

We will go on a regional outreach visit to the North East on 22 – 23 November to give a lecture at the Institute for Public Policy Research North on the role of the Lords. I will also be talking to Newcastle Science City on how people can engage with members of the Lords and I will give a talk at St Leonard’s Catholic School in Durham as part of the Peers in Schools programme.

There will be over 40 further peers making Peers in Schools visits all around the country on Friday 23 November, including the 1,000th visit of the programme since its launch in 2007. This means that around 50,000 young people will have learnt more about the House of Lords and what it does for them.

The House of Lords YouTube and Facebook channels will also be launched, featuring 30 videos of Lords members explaining how their work contributes to UK democracy.

It will be a fantastic week which I hope will lead to more people getting involved with Parliament by learning about the work we do. For more information, please visit the Parliament Week website.

5 comments for “My Parliament Week 2012

  1. Lord Blagger
    19/11/2012 at 4:43 pm

    Here’s a suggestion for a topic for debating.

    These children are on the hook for 4.7 trillion plus interest.

    http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/dcp171766_263808.pdf

    Page 4.

    Perhaps they should then debate, should they pay you your pension.

    The biggest something for nothing in the UK

  2. Nazma FOURRE
    19/11/2012 at 11:19 pm

    Dear Lord speaker,
    I wish Paricipants from this blog independent of their nationalities could participate in these debates and be invited to share common views to help in the evolution of the House of Lords.I wish invitations are sent to those overseas participants who might be delighted to be part in the debates.
    Furthermore, dear Lord speaker, I am sure that the appointment of “Junior Lords” would be a great advantage to discuss policies with the Lords. Hope this dream could be a reality.
    Thanking you beforehand
    God save the Queen and the Lords. God bless the United Kingdom.
    Mrs Nazma FOURRE

  3. Croft
    20/11/2012 at 12:45 pm

    Did anyone else read “http://www.youtube.com/ukhouseoflords” and think ‘glad they specified that or I might have confused it with all those other house(s) of lords!’ :-)

  4. MilesJSD
    21/11/2012 at 7:30 pm

    Before youth can be trusted with win-lose debating
    (war or peace, privation or plenty)
    they need to pass the most rigorous and comprehensive tests in
    1. Information gathering and sharing
    2. All-round and faithful verbal-reporting of the Realities, Facts, and Predicamenets on-the-Ground
    3. Cooperative Discussion, and Method III Needs & Hows Recognition skills
    4. Formal Argumentation and Moral Reasoning;

    and (most importantly perhaps)
    show each self longterm-capable of living emulably off just one-human-living per week.
    ————
    It will be a “fantastic lifespan”, Guest Peeress,
    when yon Parliamentarians
    learn how to emuiate most of The People, who are having to work and live off just one-human-living per week !
    ——-
    Nevertheless, it does look as if a goodly ‘some’ of this work you are engaging in is ‘greater-purpose-oriented';

    so I would support those bits;
    thank you.

  5. Nazma FOURRE
    22/11/2012 at 9:56 pm

    Dear Msld,
    I can sense you do want to be a junior Lord.

    Kind regards
    God bless the United Kingdom, God save the Lords and the Queen.

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