Len Bates, Mullumbimby
Our council has made many attempts with strategies to involve the community in their decision-making process. But when it comes to the bottom line very few people actually get involved and often the same committed ones.
The council relies on advertisements in the local papers, some social media posts and their website to inform the public of opportunities to ‘have their say’.
However, to seriously get the community involved we need a full-time Community Engagement Officer to really drum up the community and encourage and help them to become involved. Many councils have such a person.
A Community Engagement Officer can also assist the community with their communication with councillors and council staff, which can be quite daunting.
At present it is the sole responsibility of each separate council department to engage with the community. But staff members have limited time, and may lack the training or skill needed to get the community involved.
Please, would anyone of the councillors take this idea on board? We really need someone on our side to encourage as many people as possible to effectively become involved – it’s really scary, lonely and really difficult on our side of the fence without any help.