Community Participation or William's Warm Words?
Posted By: Susan Emmott
Date Posted: 25/01/2008
The resistance to PROPERLY involving communities in what the Council delivers never ceases to amaze me.
Too many people are wedded to the imperfection of consultation, followed by a Top Down approach to giving communities what the centre decrees.
An example of this has been the imposition of Fortnightly Bin Collections. Rochdale Council has organised a series of expensive roadshows held in various locations, supermarkets, parks etc in order to push out the message that the reduced bin service is somehow a good thing.
There was no counter argument allowed at these roadshows, no other point of view put forward, no possible alternatives shown to people attending, no examples of good practice in other authorities that keep a weekly collection and manage to meet recycling targets. It was "a Top Down approach to giving communities what the centre decrees".
There was no consultation nor real community engagement at these roadshows, they were simply there to push only one side of the argument on Fortnightly Collections. And what is more, the Council Tax payers of this borough paid for this one sided propaganda.
Where was the genuine attempt to properly consult with the community over this matter? I am aware that some officers were sent into the firing line by their political masters to face some community groups and most of them were given short shrift, as at the Heywood Pensioner's Association. But, were any views other than those according to the Gospel of St. Wera ever taken into account?
"Trust in People" is the Lib Dem slogan, but it is a slogan and nothing more than a slogan. We can see that, not only with fortnightly bin collections, but also with changes to adult care, with short-changing our joint faith school in Heywood and with the recent flip-flopping over the promised Arts Centre.
Readers may notice that I have stolen the first two paragraphs of this entry from the previous diary entry of William Hobhouse. Fair enough, I'm a copy-cat and a plagiarist, but at least I practise what I preach.
More Entries By Susan Emmott
- Caught on Candid Camera! Date posted: 07/02/2008
- Welcome Jonathan Date posted: 02/12/2007
- Give us our school places! Date posted: 17/11/2007
- I'm still waiting, Wera Date posted: 11/11/2007
- More clarification please Wera Date posted: 07/11/2007
- F.A.O Councillor Wera Hobhouse Date posted: 30/10/2007
- Fortnightly bin collections - I'll move on when you sort it out! Date posted: 07/10/2007
- Heywood Against Landfill Date posted: 19/09/2007
- Uncollected Council Tax Scandal Date posted: 09/09/2007
- More Pennines fortnightly bin collection propaganda road shows ! Date posted: 30/08/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collections - if you're lucky! Date posted: 16/08/2007
- Abdul Chowdry - my own tribute. Date posted: 07/08/2007
- Thanks Brenda Date posted: 18/07/2007
- Official - Fortnightly Bin Collections are rubbish!!!! Date posted: 16/07/2007
- Recycled Teenagers - the sequel! Date posted: 11/07/2007
- Not just in Heywood - Bamford as well! Date posted: 24/06/2007
- "A goodwill gesture" Date posted: 21/06/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collection Fiasco Date posted: 13/06/2007
- Chaos, utter chaos! Date posted: 07/06/2007
- The Emperor's New Clothes Date posted: 26/05/2007
- Well, I tried. Date posted: 23/05/2007
- Dear Wera - an open letter Date posted: 22/05/2007
- Fortnightly Bin Collections - Opposition grows Date posted: 21/05/2007
- Update Date posted: 20/05/2007
- Update on diary Date posted: 19/05/2007
- Thank you Date posted: 17/05/2007