This post originally appeared on Climate Emergency Manchester, which is trying to
a) get 4000 signatures on a petition calling for Manchester City Council to declare a climate emergency and
b) build the capacity to hold the Council and others to account for delivery on actions that flow from that declaration.
Manchester City Council has 96 councillors. There is a ten member Executive which is responsible for policy. There are six scrutiny committees that are there to keep tabs on them. Those six scrutiny committees meet, in public, ten times a year.
Members of the public can attend those committee meetings and see how the councillors ask questions of the Executive Members and the officers.
Why does this matter? How does help us get a climate emergency declared, and how does it help us make sure the declaration isn’t just more hot air?
Well, simply this: if we don’t know who is making policy, how, and how well it is being implemented, and how to scrutinise all of this, then we are wasting our time. These skills are going to be crucial for dealing with “the January 4th 2023 problem”.
On Wednesday June 19th, at 1pm Climate Emergency Manchester folks will meet at the Waterhouse Pub (the Wetherspoons next to the War Memorial outside the Town Hall).
We’ll mingle and plot, before attending the 2pm meeting of the Neighbourhoods and Environment Scrutiny Committee, held in the Town Hall Extension. Here’s a spotters card we’ve made for the membership of that Scrutiny Committee.
The scrutiny committee meeting will be live-streamed, by the way.
There is one item of particular notice on the agenda -a report on “Eco Schools”. The report is mostly made up of case studies, and doesn’t talk at all about climate education for young people in Manchester. It may be that members of Climate Emergency Manchester ask the chair of the committee for permission to ask questions about that.
If you can’t come to the meeting, but want to get involved in scrutinising the council’s policies, please get in touch – firstname.lastname@example.org
And a date for your diary – Weds 17th July, same time, same place, for the following meeting of the Neigbhourhoods and Environment Scrutiny Committee. On the agenda that month – climate change!!