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Parliament's petitions website reopens

Parliament's petitions website reopens

The UK Parliament's petitions website has re-opened for submissions.

The website was closed during the general election and while a new petitions committee was set up. The website at petition.parliament.uk allows members of the public to create e-petitions that could receive an official response from the government or may even be debated if they receive enough support.

Petitions than gain 10,000 signatures or more will receive a government response, while those that receive over 100,000 signatures will be considered for a debate. 

Anyone can start a petition on the website, provided they are a British citizen or UK resident. Petitions must be supported by at least 5 people and meet set standards. All petitions that are published are checked by the Petitions Committee which comprises of up to 11 backbench members of Parliament from the governing and opposition parties in a way that represents the House of Commons as a whole. The new chair of the Petitions Committee is Labour Party MP, Catherine McKinnell. 

Petitions are archived following a general election. Amongst the archived petitions to receive the most support is a petition calling for Article 50 to be revoked and the UK to remain in the EU - a petition which received over 6 million signatures. Other notable petitions include one calling for Parliament not to be suspended, and for US President Donald Trump's state visit to the UK to be stopped.

Over 8,000 petitions were published online and later achieved during the 2017-2019 Conservative government on a variety of topics from banning fireworks to starting schools later in the day. More than 23 million people have used the website since 2015.