Si­lenc­ing pol­icy won’t change toxic cul­ture

Windsor & Eton Express - - Viewpoint -

Democ­racy. I have been fol­low­ing the shenani­gans at Wind­sor and Maiden­head coun­cil re­sult­ing in an ab­ject apol­ogy from its coun­cil leader Andrew John­son.

He said sorry for not lis­ten­ing to op­po­si­tion mem­bers whose warn­ings his­tor­i­cally weren’t lis­tened to, fol­low­ing a damn­ing re­port on the au­thor­ity’s fi­nances by the Char­tered In­sti­tute of Pub­lic Fi­nance and Ac­coun­tancy.

Ac­count­abil­ity. He ac­knowl­edged a ‘toxic cul­ture of un­due pres­sure, cir­cum­vent­ing pro­cess, clos­ing down or block­ing those who raised gen­uine con­cerns which spread through­out the or­gan­i­sa­tion’.

I ap­plaud him for own­ing up to these past fail­ings of the rul­ing party and look for­ward to them chang­ing the cul­ture that caused them.

How­ever it seems un­likely it will hap­pen any­time soon given the op­po­si­tion’s crit­i­cism, say­ing it was un­demo­cratic to be si­lenced at the full coun­cil meet­ing on June 23 when they tried to talk about the pro­posed new con­sti­tu­tion to try to make it a more in­clu­sive coun­cil.

How are they sup­posed to raise their gen­uine con­cerns when they are not al­lowed to talk at coun­cil meet­ings to rep­re­sent their con­stituents?

The Wind­sor Labour party agrees with the op­po­si­tion stance on this.

The rul­ing party needs to work with all coun­cil­lors to try to find a con­sen­sus on the way for­ward, not shut them out.

Democ­racy takes time but it is worth it.

Un­less these changes are made, his­tory will re­peat it­self at the ex­pense of the res­i­dents.

ROY REEVES Wind­sor Con­stituency Labour Party, pol­icy

of­fi­cer

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