How to be an effective caseworker
Audience: MPs' caseworkers
Being an MP's caseworker is one of the most impactful and rewarding jobs in politics, but there is little formal training available to help you help constituents.
Conducting casework on behalf of a busy MP is a challenging job at the front line of politics. Caseworkers are often the first point of contact for constituents facing serious problems, some of whom can be in distress. They can include asylum seekers who need urgent advice on finding somewhere to live; vulnerable people whose benefits have been stopped or delayed for no apparent reason; or council tenants living in homes that are in need of urgent repair. Caseworkers must be empathetic and resourceful. They will know who to call when constituents face a genuine emergency and how to respond when government agencies or quangos are slow to act. Above all else, they are the face and voice of the MP they work for and a powerful advocate for the people their boss was elected to represent.
The day will run from 10am to 4pm in Westminster and will cover:
How to manage casework: what to prioritise and why
What your MP is responsible for – and what they are not
How to work with government agencies and other stakeholders to get results for constituents
Dealing with constituents in distress
Liaising with the police, local councils, the charitable sector and other NGOs
Raising cases with government ministers using the ‘usual channels’
Highlighting cases in the local media
How to manage stress levels and personal wellbeing
Who this course is for:
This course is open to staff employed by MPs, from any political party, and we anticipate a politically mixed audience. It will cover parliamentary work only. No advice will be given on political campaigning.
The Scheme of MPs's Business Costs and Expenses recognises courses for parliamentary staff that concentrate on parliamentary work as a 'claimable cost' which can be reclaimed from the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA).