For the past four Wednesdays the councillors (from all the political parties) involved in the Making it Real inquiry have been listening to evidence. The focus has been about what needs to change to make sure that devolution this time around is not just about changing names on the office doors, but about changing the way the Council works and makes an impact in local areas. (I will let you know what the last two sessions covered soon.)
But now the councillors also want to hear from you. Whether or not you think devolution is great, or it’s terribly, or frankly you still don’t understand what it is please give then your views.
Your options are:
1) To comment on this blog
2) To complete an online questionnaire at: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/QSHC75F
3) To complete this hard copy questionnaire and send it back by email or snail mail
You can send this back by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org (you’ll probably need to download and save it)
or by snail mail to: Scrutiny Office, Council House, Victoria Square, Birmingham, B1 1BB
4) Or to email other thoughts and comments you might have to the email address above.
We’re looking for feedback by 26th October.
There is also a leaflet here explaining the role of scrutiny and the aims of the inquiry.
Please do take copies of the leaflet and questionnaire along to local meetings or send round this link to your local mailing list.
The catalyst tonight for putting these links up was the launch of the Chamberlain Forum’s tool kit for neighbourhood forums.
It was great to see so many people at the launch passionate about changing their neighbourhoods. As the councillors have been told at every session this month the Council can’t change things alone. The only way to make the changes necessary to improve people’s lives is by working in partnership with citizens, community and voluntary organisations, statutory bodies and the private sector.
Local organisations like neighbourhood forums can help the council identify local needs and suggest ways of meeting those needs. They may even be able to help deliver services locally. The message delivered tonight was that neighbourhood forums want to have a voice and be heard by the Council, but they don’t want to compromise their independence in doing that.