Yesterday, our political correspondent David Allkins attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on Learning Disability.

The meeting was held at the Houses of Parliament to talk about how voting can be made more accessible for people with a learning disability, and the importance of everybody, regardless of disability, taking part in the democratic process. 

In addition to filming a report on the workings of the group, David gave an outstanding speech. Sitting on a panel alongside the Minister for Disabilities Mark Harper and chair, Labour MP Tom Clarke, as well as ambassadors for Mencap, he talked about United Response’s Every Vote Counts campaign as well as Easy News, and emphasised how he was determined to use his new role to make politics more accessible for all people with learning disabilities.

Noting that “everyone should have access to easy read voting materials that tell them how to register and exercise their vote”, David concluded his comments by explaining that he believes that democracy must be inclusive and available to everybody in order to achieve its purpose.

The group was chaired by Tom Clarke MP, and speeches were given by a number of experts, including Disabilities Minister Mark Harper. Indeed, the Minister sat next to David throughout the meeting, taking an active interest in what was being said as well as answering a range of questions from the floor.

David interviewed MPs after the meeting having secured special permission to film in the Committee Corridor. He asked what more needs to be done to assist people with learning disabilities to vote.

Though we were given special permission to film David’s report in parliament, all filming and photography is strictly prohibited in the Committee Rooms. We did, however, obtain special permission from the Sergeant of Arms to record what David said in his speech.

Remember to watch this space for David’s comprehensive video report on the APPG, including interviews with MPs who attended the APPG as well as Disabilities Minister Marker Harper.

David will continue to attend political events and interview political figures to highlight why every vote counts.

All of David’s forthcoming reports will be available on United Response’s blog and via the political correspondent YouTube playlist. You can also follow David's progress and quickly locate the latest Every Vote Counts campaign news by searching for #URpolcor and #EVC on Twitter.

Gemma Taylor, media assistant.