Community Councils should be more diverse and have more impact

Community groups should have diversity to reflect the variety of needs. Local authorities do and need to work more closely with groups for planning and delivery of services so a variety voices can be heard. There should for example, be a way of older and younger people coming together to support each other.

Community councilors should have a fixed term. It is a demanding role and it should be shared round. Community Council can be insular, not for example engaging with the younger generation. There is also a wider look at the role and impact of Community Councils who feel that local authorities do not fully appreciate their work and listen. It was felt that community tax letters were the key way to tell people about the work of Community Councils.

Why the contribution is important

Community Councils need to be fully involved in all local authority decisions and so should be as representative as possible.

by FairerScotlandAdmin2 on October 15, 2015 at 05:14PM

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  • Posted by FairerScotlandAdmin2 October 26, 2015 at 16:37

    From Fairer Scotland Inverness Planning Event:

    They can be cliques, and so people don’t want to get involved.

    Community councillors could be selected by lot from a pool of volunteers and serve a fixed term. But some areas report a shortage of people coming forward to volunteer to stand; of 4,000 people in a participant’s area, only 7 people volunteered to be on a Community Council.

    People don’t involve themselves in Community Councils because they have no power.
  • Posted by FairerScotlandAdmin2 November 02, 2015 at 14:03

    Idea from Fairer Scotland Midlothian Planning Event:

    Community Councils can provide a more informative service.

    Neighbourhood plans can fully connect the community on changes that will affect them before it is too late. This would allow for people who are affected by them to have their say.

    More joined up thinking between community councils is needed - local community councils with similar issues can make changes quicker if issues have been addressed with community planning consultation.

    This would address important and practical issues before they happen and give the community a sense of value and the feeling that they can influence change.
  • Posted by FairerScotlandAdmin2 November 10, 2015 at 12:15

    Idea from Fairer Scotland Dumfries Planning Event:

    It was felt that councils are not accountable for their actions and not representative of the community, There should be 40/40 men and women with ethnic, with representatives from groups such as LBGT (lesbian, bisexual, Gay and Transgender.)

    Currently councils are self selecting. They should be non political but should declare interest in a political party however their decision should be based on views of the best interest of the community. Councils can be powerful and influential but needs to more of them. Age concerns should be a more representative view of the community. There should be a dedicated youth seat and a dedicated equality seat (LGBT, Ethnic etc.) There should be different pay levels based on age, experience etc.

    And the times of meetings, should be suitable for those with child care responsibilities and allow access for disabled people. The community councillor would be the equivalent of a 20hr part time job. There should be training course for all community councillors.

    Reforms should involve a small test of change within a community and note the journey and analyze how this can be replicated in other parts of Scotland.

    This is important as this would address important and practical issues before they happen and give the community a sense of value and the feeling that they can influence change.
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