Thanks to our supporters we’ve recruited a new Lakeman Fellow

Author:
Lizzie Lawless, Membership Officer

Posted on the 21st January 2022

We are delighted to announce that we recently appointed a new Lakeman Fellow to join the ERS team.

The Lakeman Fellowship for Diversity in Politics is a scheme we set up in 2018, as a unique work and training opportunity for those under-represented in UK politics. The scheme is fully funded by the generous donations of our members and supporters, and we are excited to be able to continue this scheme into 2022.

We publicised the vacancy throughout the autumn, in order to find people who might not normally have the chance to begin a career in politics, and give them an opportunity to get started, learn and develop with the ERS.

We had a large volume of high-quality applicants and whittling them down to a shortlist for interview was a very tough process! However, we are pleased to announce we had one exceptional candidate, Pete, who we invited to join us at the start of the year.

A message from Pete:

After two weeks in the role, it’s time to say hello to all the ERS members and supporters who have donated towards the Lakeman Fellowship. Without them, I wouldn’t be getting my legs under the table as the second Lakeman Fellow at the Electoral Reform Society.

I’m someone who didn’t do especially well at school, I got my GCSE’s and then went to do an apprenticeship. While politics has interested me for my whole adult life, it's not something I ever thought I’d have the qualifications to be a part of, it’s an incredibly hard sector to get your foot in the door. That’s the first reason why I’m excited for the opportunity to work at the ERS.

When I saw that the Electoral Reform Society ran a scheme, funded by their supporters, that could give me the leg up I needed, I just knew I had to apply.

The work that the Electoral Reform Society undertakes deeply resonates with me. Democracy is not something that is ever done, it has to grow, evolve and be protected. The reforms that the ERS advocate for, that of proportional representation, votes at 16 and House of Lords reform, are in my opinion necessary steps in the evolution of democracy. That’s the second reason why I’m excited for the opportunity to work at the ERS.

I’ve now been working at the ERS for just under two weeks, in that time I’ve met most of the team. They’re an incredibly passionate, hardworking and intelligent group and I’m enthused to work alongside them and learn from them. That’s the third reason why I’m excited for the opportunity to work at the ERS.

So to the incredible members of the ERS who made this opportunity possible, I wish to offer you a heartfelt thank you. I look forward to updating you on my journey in the future.

The Lakeman Fellowship

The Lakeman Fellowship for Diversity in Politics is a unique work and training opportunity for those under-represented in UK politics. This year long paid placement aims to provide tailored support to someone who has a passion for politics, particularly those from ethnic minority and working-class backgrounds.

The salary is funded by ERS members and supporters who take out an extra direct debit – if you would like to support Pete, and future trainees, you can start donating now.

Help the Lakeman Fellowship continue into the future

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