Learning Disability Today
Supporting professionals working in learning disability and autism services

New Parliamentary outreach resource helps people with learning disabilities ‘get government system’

houseofcommonsThe Houses of Parliament Outreach Service has developed a package of learning resources to help adults with learning disabilities understand how Parliament works.

Launched by the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow MP, the specialist resource pack forms the basis of a learning session in which participants are encouraged to think and talk about who runs the country and the laws they would like to make.

“Make their voice heard”
Speaking at a recent Parliamentary Outreach and Mencap event in Leeds for people with a learning disability, Mr Bercow said: “It’s very important people find out how to get involved with Parliament and make their voice heard.

“I hope these learning resources will help to inform, engage and inspire people with Parliament and encourage people to exercise their democratic rights.”

The resource pack, containing DVD, laminated cards and training sessions, provides a series of exercises using scenes from political, parliamentary and everyday life help learners to find out more about how Parliament works.

Using the resource pack, Parliamentary outreach officers are available to lead learning activity sessions and Parliament’s Outreach Service also provides support for organisations to use the resource in learning sessions for their clients.

Inspired people to share opinions on Parliament
Since its launch in 2011, the resource pack has been used by Parliamentary outreach officers in training sessions throughout the UK.

The resource pack has been developed through close work with disability charity Mencap. Parliament Outreach is working with a number of organisations, such as Robert Owen Communities and Dimensions UK (ROC), to produce UK-wide sessions for adults with learning disabilities and their carers.

Hayley Koen-Ashley, Team Leader for ROC, said: “The training has really inspired people to share opinions that represent others and has encouraged them to spread the word about parliament.”

For more information visit www.parliament.uk/ald

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