- Posted by: Canterbury Labour
- Category: Latest News
Labour has welcomed the efforts of the local community to form two new forums in place of the local forums Canterbury City Council removed in October.
The CT5 People’s Forum co-chaired by former Labour Councillor Bernadette Fisher and the Canterbury Local Democracy Forum chaired by Cllr Jean Butcher were both launched in November with well over fifty attending each inaugural meeting. They are the product of Labour councillors support for local groups who refused to have their voice silenced and a direct challenge to Conservative Leader Ben Fitter Harding’s derisory comment that they were only ‘talking shops’.
Councillor Chris Cornell said “the huge turnout for the new Whitstable forum is evidence that the community needs and wants a regular way of addressing their councillors. Democracy matters and voters will remember those who seek to take their voice away.”
He continued “in the last couple of weeks I have heard some say that the decision by the council to shut them was somehow right because the community has now stopped in. This is rubbish. The local community have lost their right to directly ensure subjects they bring become the order of council meetings; whilst we welcome this proactive response the community is paying for what should be on the public purse.”
The online meetings are initially planned to meet once every two months in line with council meetings. Members from all political parties attended to speak to the public. Councillor Ben Fitter Harding however, did not.