Legislate for Deliberative Democracy

Legislate for Deliberative Democracy

Legislate for Deliberative Democracy in order to ensure that: ⚫ diverse voices and communities from all parts of Scotland influence Scottish Parliament’s work ⚫ the public are consistently informed and consulted on local and national issues In drawing up this legislation the Parliament should: ⚫ recognise that there is not one engagement solution that fits all situations and issues ⚫ design and implement a framework based on this panel’s recommendations for ensuring diverse participation in deliberative democracy. The framework should include: ⚫ An annually recurring citizens’ panel with agenda-setting powers to determine which local and national issues require either national or local people’s panels (e.g., ‘deliberative town halls’) ⚫ Protection for participants to improve participation. We do not agree that participation in panels should be mandatory, but protective elements such as the right to time off work should be included for people who are selected to take part. ⚫ Rules around how MSPs consider and respond to recommendations from people’s panels such as mandatory follow-up to people’s panels’ recommendations no later than 9 months and a response from the Parliament and Government ⚫ Potential for mixed MSP–people panels ⚫ Ability to form local panels with local MSPs with outcomes that are sent up to the national level


Listen to the concerns of the rural communities who have different problems from the rest of the country but are generally ignored because they are in the minority

Theres no point legislating for something that should already be at the core of what this Parliament does.

Whatever you do - it needs to be simple, otherwise it will be lost in the detail and the impact on community involvement will be minimal. Requiring MSPs to hold a certain number of Community sessions each term to engage face to face in their communities would establish a better two way communication process and will increase community involvement in parliamentary business.

Quite worried about this, 19 people cant speak for Scotland. Different areas have diffrent problems and rural areas are not the same as the central belt or towns. Msp represent different areas, a citizen panel cant. Why not use Community Council input as a the they represent individual communities.

It's a big and expensive idea! Panels would need to be large enough to be representative and selected randomly from the entire population.

Legislate to form a citizens assembly which would be the main body to create policy, then to be implemented by an executive. Membership of the assembly would be by sortition. This action would lead to the euthanasia of partisan politics, puerile point scoring, political parties and policy created by lobby groups. Policy derived from the deliberations of ordinary citizens would better serve the needs of Scots, rather than narrow party ideology.

Something like this is running in Ostbelgien, and generally in Belgium we're seeing a lot of democratic innovation - it would be fantastic to see Scotland picking this up and adapting it to the local context. We've also seen from Ireland that when people understand these kinds of processes to be part of the normal way of making complex decisions that affect everyone, via this kind of institutionalisation, participation levels are very high and responses are positive.

This provides a welcome framework for taking the discussion around legislating for deliberative democracy forward. The Scottish Parliament should work to embed the ambitions outlined into its ethos and practice. As intimated, there needs to be real diversity of representation and genuine consultation. Local citizen's panels are an interesting idea, and might be considered as part of the wider debates in relation to revamping local democracy, and connections between communities and institutions.

We already have a Citizens Assembly in Scotland, our Scottish Parliament filled with 129 elected representatives. Our Parliament already has a world-class consultations system that all can take part in - I therefore do not see any reason why we would wish to duplicate the deliberatery nature of the Scottish Parliament in a way that diminishes the role of our MSPs. Ultimately we elect them to deliberate in Parliament on our behalf, and if we dislike their decisions we can vote them out.

Legislating is a good potential step to ensure that recommendations from panels are not ignored by the politicians, particularly if it includes a mandatory reporting system upon what points from a panel have been included in a policy proposal. It would also be useful for the Parliament, when potentially drafting legislation, to formally recognise the need of citizen panels to the provision of adequate resources, such as access to information and impartial expertise/experts.

Set up a truly independent organisation to monitor; the influence of lobbyists, both public and privately funded ones, use analytical techniques to demonstrate levels of transparency, community consultation and engagement. The SG civil service and political representatives should be kept at arm's length

A Citizen Assembly, formed by sortition, should be the legislative body, there is no need for any other body, either to oversee or be overseen.

I believe that citizen’s panels are really really important, and should be used a lot more to inform the working of the Scottish Parliament. Having a broad discussion from a wide range of people with no real agenda could provide valuable information on a wide variety of topics. Deliberative democracy will fill in the gaps between elections, but will be more powerful than nothing at all.

There's definitely a role for deliberative democracy/citizen panels in the work of the Scottish Parliament. But we need to think carefully about how this interacts with the principles of representative democracy that the Parliament is based on. If we're going to continue to have elected representatives, we need to have a clear idea about what that process brings to the table versus citizen panels.

Making sure that there are staff (social care) to support people with learning difficulties to take part in these processes. It is best if the Parliament can arrange for care workers who know and have a relationship with already to support them in these processes.

Watching this from Los Angeles, where a corruption scandal in our city council is causing many to consider citizens' assemblies as a way to restore trust in government. So tired of politics as usual and welcome new examples of an engaged citizen body chosen by lot and representative of the whole.

This is a very exciting proposal, especially this point: "An annually recurring citizens’ panel with agenda-setting powers" - since to date almost all citizens' assemblies have had their agenda set by others and this would give such a panel much more scope to tackle the issues that elected representatives may shy away from handing to a citizens' panel.

make sure this happens! It is a chance to have a diverse group of people, drawn from all sectors of Scottish society, setting the agenda for the decisions that matter. It is a chance to do politics differently, something that many of us have been craving for a long time.

Sometimes care providers don't give people the option to choose a prefered support worker - what can be done to make it easier for people to choose a support worker to support them in these types of situations. Nonverbal need to be considered. And we must make it clear that support is available including working with existing support workers.

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