Letter - Most MPs do have respect for lobbying

I read Conservative MP Charles Walker's 'coruscating' attack on the lobbying industry on the PRWeek website (prweek.com/uk, 30 November) with both surprise and disappointment.

You reported that Walker told the Public Administration Select Committee he was 'just appalled' at the quality of the lobbying he had experienced since becoming an MP.

But Walker's comments simply do not reflect the reality of our business in which conscientious and dedicated individuals treat parliamentarians with respect and professionalism.

The vast majority of the public affairs industry and its excellent consultants set themselves exacting standards of professionalism and quality. While his remarks may serve as a timely reminder of the importance of well-targeted, well-informed and expert lobbying, they risk besmirching an industry that is constantly striving to improve its modus operandi.

No-one should be in any doubt that the organisations or individuals who take the wrong approach when they engage with policymakers are in the minority.

My own experience is that MPs and peers are more often than not grateful for our interventions and respect our industry. Walker is entitled to his views, but they are the views of one man in a Parliament of 646 representatives.

John Lehal, MD, Insight Public Affairs

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