The ‘all-out’ elections in both Sheffield and Rotherham in May 2016 – see accompanying article – mean that quite a few local members could become councillors for the first next year. We therefore asked Andrew Cooper, a long-standing Green councillor in Kirklees in West Yorkshire, to run a briefing workshop in June for about 20 local members.
The workshop first of all described the role and powers of a local council, including its areas of responsibility, where it gets it money from, and how it can work in partnership with other organisations and with local communities.
It then illustrated how councillors can work with communities, by being enablers or leaders; and what Green councillors have achieved in both Sheffield and around the country, e.g. by dealing with residents’ casework and interacting with certain issues or campaigns.
Finally, the workshop summarised the support, facilities and money (i.e. allowances) available for councillors.
The feedback from workshop participants was very positive. One person said “I really enjoyed the workshop. The content was highly relevant and Andrew was very engaging in presenting it. The contributions from current councillors were very insightful.”
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