A guide to hustings

A hustings is a public meeting where you get the chance to hear election candidates in your area set out how they would approach particular issues and answer a variety of questions from the audience.

You should be able to find out if any hustings are happening nearby through your local press. Or via social media/websites for the candidates.

Questions are often required to be submitted in advance so as to ensure a variety and balance.

Potential questions for hustings

If you do attend a hustings, here are some potential questions to help ensure carers aren’t forgotten:

  • Question 1: Why are you the candidate for unpaid carers?
  • Question 2: How would you ensure unpaid carers don’t face poverty because of their caring role? Will you support reform of Carer’s Allowance?
  • Question 3: How will you help ensure carers can find and are supported to stay in work?
  • Question 4: What would you do to ensure Local Authorities have the funding they need to invest in local carer services and provide financial assistance to carers in crisis?
  • Question 5: What would you do to help improve support for young carers in education?

If you attend a hustings, do let us know if the topic of carers comes up – policy@carers.org.

Arranging a hustings

If you are an organisation thinking about arranging a hustings, then there are some key things to consider:

  • You are responsible for ensuring impartiality . Try to invite at least one candidate from each of the main parties unless you have a very good reason not to. You can find the latest candidate details here.
  • Choose a format. A Question Time approach is usually most popular – a panel with a Chair
  • They can be online or in-person.
  • It’s a good idea when inviting candidates to outline some information detailing the challenges the voluntary sector and people like the ones you support are facing
  • Have a chair who can stay impartial but also ensure candidates stick to timings/format.
  • Using a platform like Eventbrite to manage bookings can reduce the admin for you
  • Finalise details with candidates at least a few days before the hustings take place.
  • After the event thank candidates and share any further information around what came up. If possible, try and get some form of commitment in the reply to support the cause whether voted in or not 

If you attend or hold a hustings, please do let us know how it goes – policy@carers.org.