Keeping connections strong with your local MP is strongly advisable according to Anne Veck and Keith Mellen. These Oxford business dynamos ensure they have lines of contact open with a regular invitation to the local MP to meet annually. Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, Anneliese Dodds is Oxford East MP.
This ‘Hairdressing Briefing’ involved an hour-long meeting with a brief tour of the salon (and of course a quick consult of the MP’s own hair!). Above this, the topics of discussion are the general economy and specifically the local high street with pertaining issues such as rents, rates and furlough, and this meeting centrally focussed on the impact of COVID-19 on the high street.
Regarding hairdressing, we discussed how important the industry is, 10% of high street by economic value, £7.5 billion/year, 240,00 employees, 40,00 hairdressers and barbers operating within this phenomenal industry, it is so important at each meeting to reinforce the scale and voice of hairdressing. It provided us with a platform to talk about our passion for sustainability and how we are sharing that with the industry with our soon to be launched initiative. All in all, she left that meeting aware that hairdressers and hairdressing is a powerhouse of creativity, business thinking and has great importance to community and economy alike.
Anne and Keith urge all salons to keep lines of communication open with their local MPs, so that their understanding of hairdressing as an essential service is recognised.