I often receive requests from constituents to sign Early Day Motions (EDMs), but like many MPs do not sign these, no matter how worthy the cause.
I realise this is a source of disappointment to some of those who contact me and I would like to make it clear that not signing an EDM does not mean that I do not care about the issue at hand, I just do not believe that EDMs are an effective way to achieve a solution.
Whilst I recognise that, at the time of their conception, EDMs were an important way in which to draw attention to particular causes, EDMs today have no chance of changing the law and serve as petitions that only MPs can sign.
They have now been superseded by the No. 10 e-petitions; which serve as a more efficient and cost effective democratic tool that can be signed by everyone. Today’s social media also allows for many ways in which people’s attention can be brought to issues without using public funds.
EDMs cost a huge amount to administer each year and I do not think they are good value for money, costing the taxpayer around £400 per motion.
If I want to put across an issue on behalf of a constituent, which I am always happy to do, I will write a letter, request a meeting or debate, submit a parliamentary question or speak to Ministerial colleagues in the voting lobby of the House of Commons. There are far more effective and direct ways of getting things done.