Canberra Forum Launch

DemocracyCo is partnering with Alicia Paine MP to deliver an Australian first deliberative process for the citizens of Canberra

At democracyCo we exist to help improve our democracy and our democracy needs help! As it struggles in the face of social media, the 24hr media cycle, increased polarisation in society, and increasingly distrust.

Change is needed. 

Historically, democratic reform choices have been presented as a binary choice between reforms that strengthen the representative system of government and reforms that extend greater public participation.

We believe that participatory reforms can be used to bolster the legitimacy of representative democracy and enhance trust between government and citizens.

Our Members of Parliament are our system of representative democracy.

But as we face our ‘once in a three-year’ chance to decide who our representative will be, it is clear that choosing between the few people who stand – isn’t enough to sustain our democracy in this new world.

The community wants to know that their local member is representing them throughout the electoral term.  

Innovation in representative democracy is rare – but the process we are partnering with Alicia Paine, Member for Canberra, to deliver, seeks to trail one new approach.  

An Australian first, Community In One Room Forums seek to offer citizens enhanced participation in the democratic process.

The Forums seek to give citizens greater access to their representative through a deliberative process; enabling them to better inform their MP of the issues that are most important to them. Whilst also providing an opportunity for participants to better understand the democratic process in Australia and use that knowledge to get the best results for their community.

The trial project for the Seat of Canberra is just the beginning – we want to work with other MP’s of all persuasions. Independents, Liberal party members, Nationals, Teal’s, and other Labor members – to explore how the Community In One Room Forum process can assist them in representing the diverse views of their communities.  

No matter the colour of our MPs or whether they belong to political parties or not – all MP’s need to find new and improved ways to connect with the communities – to add to their engagement approaches.

Could your electorate be next? Do you want a Community in One Room Forum in your area? Get in touch – we are offering a once of opportunity for another MP to be part of an in-kind trial.

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