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The Work of an MLA

It’s a busy week for an MLA! Can you find the time in your diary to do it all?

One of the major roles of an MLA is to work on new laws, or legislation. MLAs debate proposals for new laws, called bills in plenary meetings in the Assembly Chamber and vote on whether or not to pass them. The Speaker chairs these meetings.

They also work in small teams, called Committees, where they examine the Bills in detail, consulting experts and the Public about their views. Committees might suggest changes, called Amendments, to improve the Bills.

The largest parties in the Assembly choose Ministers to take charge of the different Government Departments. They are responsible for making sure we have the Public Services we need, such as health care and education. The Ministers plus the First Minister and deputy First Minister form the Executive Committee/Executive. Another important part of an MLA’s job is to check the work of Ministers to ensure that they are doing a good job. This is known as holding them to account.

MLAs also have work to do in their own constituencies. It is their role to represent the people living there, by listening to their views and helping them to solve problems.

You have just been elected as an MLA. Have a go at dealing with constituents