The Guardian has reported that residents in Southern Australia, who face having a nuclear waste storage facility imposed on them, are being forced to sign an excessively restrictive code of conduct if they wish to attend community meetings. This prevents them from taking notes, repeating certain views expressed in the meeting, or trying to take part in the committee discussions. This appears to go well beyond the steps required to maintain an orderly meeting, and serves to suppress democratic accountability. While the last search process in Cumbria, MRWS, didn’t go to such extreme lengths, there were some unnecessary restrictions which obstructed local democracy. Specifically, executive members of the borough councils, and cabinet members of Cumbria County Council, were told that they could not give any public indication of whether they were minded to vote for the process to proceed to the next stage. This ‘predetermination’ rule allowed senior councillors to completely avoid public scrutiny on the matter.
Cumbria Trust 11th Aug 2019 read more »