Mayoral Elections 2017 - WEA #AdultLearningCounts Campaign

The Elections & Adult Learning

In May, six areas of England will elect new Mayors. The Mayors will have responsibility for the overall economic strategy for their region and will have wide-ranging powers and significant budgets.

When campaigning to be Mayor, we expect the candidates to be talking about economic strategy – but we do not expect that they will make the connection with Adult Education or Community Learning and how it can contribute.

This is why we need your help as WEA volunteers and supporters.

Download Full Guidance Notes

How Can You Help?

We would like you all to contact all the candidates with a simple message about the benefits of lifelong learning and the ways it can improve economic growth, community life and personal wellbeing.

This will help the candidates to understand better why adult education should be a higher priority and why it should be at the heart of their plans if elected.

  1. Social Media

Nearly all of the candidates are using social media – especially Twitter – to promote their campaigns.

We have prepared a simple Pledge Card which candidates & public supporters can easily place on their Twitter feeds or Facebook pages as a means of showing their support for adult education.

Local candidates are more likely to do this if other people in the region are also showing their support for lifelong learning, which you can do by putting the Pledge Card on your own social media profiles.

Download Pledge Card

  1. Letters of Support

You may also wish to write to candidates or your local press with similar messages promoting the benefits of lifelong learning and explaining what it means to you.

Download Sample Letter

Download Useful Statistics

  1. Poster of Support

Available for those of you not on social media that wish to use the Pledge Card to show your support and encourage others to join you.

Download Poster

Practical Advice & FAQs

i) Where are Mayoral Elections happening?

They are taking place in:

  • Cambridgeshire & Peterborough
  • Greater Manchester
  • Liverpool City Region
  • Tees Valley
  • West of England
  • West Midlands

ii) Who are my candidates?

The BBC has published a helpful list of all the candidates likely to take part:

There are also useful links and other information about each Election here:

If you are a registered voter you will also receive election literature especially nearer the Election Date on 4 May.

iii) How can I contact them and when?

There is no one list of contacts for the candidates in each region though many will list details on their election material.

The Pledge Card is designed to work best on Twitter and we have put together a list of all the candidates’ Twitter names to assist you with your support. See end of guidance notes (Download).

Although candidates are not formally announced until 5 April, many are campaigning actively already and you can contact them at any time between now and the election.

Important Charity Rules:

The WEA is a charity and must follow strict guidelines about campaigning.

We must not favour any candidates over another. The Pledge Card is designed to be shared with all candidates and we urge you to circulate it widely.

We must stay within our charitable purposes which means that we are only asking you to contact the candidates about adult education and learning and not any other issues

We would be delighted if all candidates’ sign up to the Pledge but by doing this should be recognised as an endorsement of lifelong learning not an association with the WEA.