Understanding and promoting the Community Empowerment Act to every community organisation in the country

There are rules on participation but these need to be implemented and people need to understand the law, particularly the Community Empowerment Act. There is Community Empowerment Act guidance coming out, but a huge amount of work is needed by communities and agencies to build trust. 

Participation means taking part in the decision making process, not just the discussion in advance.

Too much representation is by invitation, not representation as a true representative and this is exclusive not inclusive. CEA didn’t (but could have) embraced subsidiarity principle. They should devolve budgets to community councils for participatory budgeting.

 

Why the contribution is important

This is important because when people are truly involved in consultation and when communities are empowered, then they can do things for themselves - and do things better.

by FairerScotlandAdmin2 on October 26, 2015 at 04:39PM

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Comments

  • Posted by DonaldC November 02, 2015 at 18:03

    Community Councils are served by people volunteering to give up their free time to try and represent their communities. These people have work commitments, some are carers, some are retired from employment. Some may have specialist skills to help with the understanding of legal, financial or planning issues, but mostly they are just using common sense to deal with issues as they arise. If they had been able to participate, by right, in the process from the outset they would be better able to advise their communities on the proposals.
    Some Community Councils feel overwhelmed by the constant barrage of information from multiple sources, with little in the way off assistance to deal with the plethora of technical jargon emmanating from these organisations.
    One way to deal with this is to have a 'Forum' system of neighbouring Community Councils, this would allow a pooling of Community Councillors with relevant experience in the different spheres to advise on the best course of action. Participation in the decision making process could be done at the 'Forum' level, with Community Council representatives best suited to the relevant issue.
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