A Member of Parliament, or MP, is a politician who represents people from a particular section of the country. These areas are called constituencies and the people who live there are called their constituents.
MPs hold regular meetings in their constituencies, known as surgeries, where their constituents can talk to them about their concerns or any problems they are having. Constituents can also get in touch with their MP by writing to them or contacting them at their office.
In the House of Commons, MPs can also take part in debates and vote on whether new laws should be made.
Constituents get to decide who their MP is by voting at elections. This happens during a general election. However, if an MP resigns, is sacked or dies, constituents vote for their new MP at a by-election.
MPs usually represent a political party. However, this is not always the case. Those who don’t represent a political party are called independent MPs.
Anyone can stand for election as an MP as long as they are at least 18 years old and are registered to vote.