Since the snap election was called by the Conservatives seven weeks ago, it has been interesting to see the reaction to their handling of the media.

The overriding theme has been one of avoidance: stories of the press being locked out of events, being allowed to ask pre-vetted questions only and of ministers darting in and out of back doors have been frequent.

And even when interviews have been granted, journalists have been left complaining of questions going unanswered and replaced with “strong and stable” soundbites.

Most recently, Jeremy Corbyn changed his mind and decided to participate in the TV leadership debate, but Theresa May stayed away.

This prompted a cartoon in the Times in which our prime minister hides behind the sofa.

We’ve drawn up our own version, in which she is seen completing an online course in media management from the safety of her breakfast table.

And we now know, two weeks after we first asked for an interview, that the Conservatives are determined to keep FE Week away from the apprenticeships minister Robert Halfon.

The lack of opportunity to scrutinise the manifesto commitments weakens the democratic process.

Would you choose to buy a medicine from a pharmacy that refused to even make itself available to ask about potential side effects?

I’m not going to endorse one party over another, but the best way to change the behaviour of a salesperson is to refuse to buy their product.

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