(June 23, 2011)

In recent years, numerous studies have shown that Parliament is unrepresentative and that the creation of a host of unpaid internship positions are making politics only accessible to the wealthy or those based in London. The Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements scheme that has just been launched is a cross-party project created by Hazel Blears, Labour MP for Salford and Eccles, Eric Ollerenshaw, Conservative MP for Lancaster and Fleetwood and Jo Swinson, Liberal Democrat MP for East Dunbartonshire, which aims to address these issues by offering 12 people the opportunity and support to complete a paid internship in Parliament.


The scheme hopes to attract people from disadvantaged and diverse backgrounds, in a bid to make Parliament more inclusive and open.


Liverpool Walton MP, Steve Rotheram, has endorsed the scheme saying, “I am delighted to see the launch of the Speaker’s Parliamentary Placements scheme. It is a fantastic programme that will open up internships in Parliament to people from ordinary backgrounds, and I hope that people across Walton who are passionate about politics will consider applying.”

The former Lord Mayor or Liverpool is a passionate believer in apprenticeships, "I learnt my trade through an apprenticeship and by the age of 22 was able to own my own business. In modern society, an apprenticeship is a great way to bridge the gap between the classroom and the work place, offering people practical on-the-job-training. The Houses of Parliament is probably one of, if not the, most recognisable buildings in the world. The chance to call it your office is a privilege and one I want to share with the people of Walton so please apply." 

Applications can be made on the Social Mobility Foundation’s website:

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