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Meet the MU at Labour and Conservative Party Conferences

Meet the Musicians’ Union at the Labour and Conservative party conferences to talk about the big challenges facing musicians – and invite your MP to do the same.

Published: 23 September 2022 | 11:34 AM Updated: 23 September 2022 | 12:30 PM
A view of Liverpool docks looking empty in the early morning
“We remain very concerned about freelance musicians leaving music because they cannot afford to stay.” Photo credit: Shutterstock

MU representatives will be talking to MPs, MSPs, MSs and councillors from across the UK about the union’s policy priorities, including music education, working in the EU post Brexit and investing in musicians.

It’s part of the union’s long term focus on improving members’ pay, conditions, and job opportunities. Learn more about the union’s current focus in the first of General Secretary Naomi Pohl’s new regular updates.

We’ll be talking about all of these issues at special events at both Conferences, ‘Music for All’. Invite your MP and, if you’re attending conference, come along to hear from General Secretary Naomi Pohl plus live music from MU members. Join us at:

A collective voice for better at Labour Party Conference

This year’s Labour Conference includes a packed programme for the MU delegation. MU members will be debating and voting on Labour Party policy in the main hall covering the UK’s green and digital future, and education.

General Secretary Naomi Pohl and Head of Communications & Government Relations Isabelle Gutierrez will be meeting with national representatives from all four nations. Meetings scheduled include Shadow Leader of the House of Commons Thangam Debbonaire MP (Bristol West), Shadow Work and Pensions Minister Alison McGovern MP (Wirral South) and Shadow Minister Stephen Doughty MP (Cardiff South and Penarth). The MU will also be meeting with representatives from national assemblies, and prospective parliamentary candidates.

Plus MU Head of International Dave Webster, and Head of Education & Wellbeing Chris Walters will be representing members at panels and events including:

  • A Better Deal with Europe, hosted by the Independent Commission on UK-EU relations and Friedrich Ebert Siftung Foundation
  • Repairing the Breach: A Better Relationship with the EU that Delivers for UK People and Businesses, hosted by Society of Labour Lawyers, the Musicians’ Union and Labour Business
  • The Power of Music: Boosting People, Place and Prosperity, hosted by UK Music
  • The Future of the EU-UK Relationship, hosted by the Centre for European Reform and Delegation of the EU to the UK
  • Fabian Society and Lloyds Banking Group Reception, hosted by the Fabian Society and Lloyds Banking Group

MU General Secretary Naomi Pohl will also speaking on proportional representation, which the MU has voted for at previous conferences, at the #Labour4PR Rally: Make FPTP History on Sunday 15 September.

Delegates and visitors to Conference can find out more in the Conference guide, or visit the MU on stand 77 in the Exhibition Hall.

Talking to Government where they are

The MU will also be at this year’s Conservative Party Conference, as part of the union’s work for universal music education, working in the EU post-Brexit, and protecting the BBC.

We are also trying to secure a meeting with new Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Michelle Donelan. Any MU members living in her constituency of Chippeham are urged to contact her asking her to meet with the MU as soon as possible.

Keeping the focus on policy priorities

MU General Secretary Naomi Pohl says:

"The MU is committed to working with the UK Government and Officials in Westminster, as well as in the devolved Nations, to address issues of concern to musicians.

“We hope the new Secretary of State will be willing to meet with us to discuss our policy priorities in due course. Nadine Dorries did not agree to meet with us, disappointingly, but Minister Julia Lopez has been receptive to our issues and she remains in post.

“It is crucial that we continue to engage in a dialogue and this will be our focus at the upcoming Party Conferences".

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