HTML block - using database fields

With the old email builder, I was able to use HTML to pass contact fields through links

<a href=“FORMADDRESS?FirstName=~Contact.FirstName~&LastName=~Contact.LastName~&Email=~Contact.Email~">Please Use This Form


With the new email builder, the syntax needs to be XHTML and now (prob because of the &) the fields arent coming through. Instead its passing through and example contact: John Doe

Is there any way to use the XHTML to correctly pass the contact info through?