‘Democracy Matters’ – the Scottish Government needs your views on how decisions should be made in your community

The Scottish Government are currently taking forward a ‘local governance review’. This means they are looking into how decisions are made in our local communities (e.g. about how money is spent and the way services are provided). They want to find out if there are ways these decision- making processes could be improved.

As part of this review, they are running a public consultation called ‘Democracy Matters’. They want to know what we think about how local decisions are made now and how we would like it to be done in future. They have a list of questions which they want the public to answer.

This is a really important consultation but it can be hard to know where to start. That’s why Mindwaves has pulled together all of the online resources and information you need to have your say.

First of all you might like to watch this very useful short animation from the Scottish Government which explains the consultation:

Now that you know the background there are three main resources to help you get your views across:

1. If you just want to go straight ahead with answering the questions you can use the Scottish Government’s consultation document and return it by post or email. It can help to have a look at the consultation webpages which include a range of background information.

2. Glasgow Disability Alliance have created an easy-read resource on behalf of the Scottish Government which puts the consultation information and questions across in an accessible way. It can be downloaded or read online. Individuals can use this to help understand all of the information before they respond. Organisations can use it to make sure that people they support are included in the consultation. We found this resource particularly helpful and it is a good first port of call for everyone interested in the consultation!

3. If you run or are a member of a community group or organisation, you can apply to Voluntary Action Scotland to fund a community conversation event. The idea is that people’s views can be gathered and submitted to the Scottish Government. Visit the funding webpage for information and criteria. There is also a helpful guide for anyone thinking about setting up a community conversation event. The deadline for funding applications is 14th September 2018.

Everyone has the right to be involved in decisions which affect their lives – we hope you feel inspired to make your views heard! The consultation is open until November 2018.

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