I'm writing to encourage you to use what time we have left before the Scottish Election 2011 to contact your MSP candidates in the run up to voting day. Right now is when we can most easily influence them. They are desperate for our votes and, if enough people write, they will react. Asking for a reply, generates more activity and hence lodges the point further into their staff's mind. I've set out some draft thoughts to help you construct an email. The more that you personalise this, the better, so please feel free to modify the following as you wish.
Finding where to write to isn't simple. The websites listed below give the list of candidates for the constituencies in our area. Their addresses aren't given but they can be contacted c/o their election agents' office addresses.
An 80% solution is to simply visit the site below to get the contact details (this includes email addresses) of previous MSPs, many of whom are standing for re-election. If you do this, please write / email both your regional and all of your constituency MSPs
David Windle, Chairman
Dear ............. ,
I am deciding how I will vote in the coming election and am writing to find out your views on the following matters, which are most important to my friends and myself.
Wild Life Crime
We continually read of poisoned birds of prey. What are your views on tougher penalties for perpetrators and also tougher penalties for the estates where they may work. It is a nonsense for estate owners to claim that they don't know that it's going on. They probably aren't involved but they could stop the poisoning if they wanted to.
Last year, Peter Peacock MSP and Sarah Boyack MSP promoted a petition and subsequent members' debate on the subject of control of hill tracks. The matter was debated and there is now public consultation on changes to the planning regime (General Permitted Development Order). I believe that we urgently need to stop the ongoing proliferation of hill tracks on our moorland and mountain areas. Where do you stand on this issue?
Protection of Wild Land
I believe that Scotland's wild land is unique; a priceless asset. It is a major draw for tourists, probably our major industry. Wild land is now under unprecedented pressure, often from short sighted economic developments, where a small short term gain is allowed to over-ride the long term disadvantage of reduced tourism and visitor income due to a degraded landscape. Local Athorities often, for many reasons, don't enforce the existing position with the powers that they have, being scared of appeal costs, wealthy and hence powerful landowners. Do you agree that wild land needs stronger legal protection and that local Authorities need pressure from Holyrood to fully enforce existing policies and legislation?
I look forward to receiving your reply.
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