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The Harlow Conversation is coming….

Politics / Wed 12th Mar 2014 at 01:39pm

ON Saturday 5th April, 80 citizens from Harlow will gather in Harlow for a one-day community event. The People’s Poll is part of a new research project being undertaken by the University of Cambridge. For the first time the People’s Poll is taking place in Harlow.

The Harlow Conversation is a new way to create fresh ideas on local issues that matter to you and your family and make positive changes in your community. It is about finding new ways for people to become involved in local level democracy. It’s also about finding out what people think to the devolution of power from central government to Harlow’s local government, and local community.

Giving people in Harlow more control over their lives might help the local community to prosper and improve public services. At present there is a real problem with ordinary people not getting involved in politics. Voter turnout at the last three General Elections in 2001, 2005, and 2010 was at a historic low of around 60% to 65%. Meanwhile the turnout at the Harlow District Council elections for councillors in May 2012 was only 28%.

A spokesperson said: “We want people in Harlow to share their views by participating in the People’s Poll. The People’s Poll is not like telephone polls or questionnaires that attempt to boil down complex issues into quick questions, never giving people the chance to discuss these vital topics with anyone. The People’s Poll is an attempt to conduct public opinion research in a new and constructive way. It works by local people sharing forthright, honest (maybe even completely new or controversial) views about the pros and cons of each proposed reform on localism. As time is limited to one day, discussion will focus on four local ideas:

EDUCATION
Transfer the ability to set the school curriculum from central government to local schools.

PAYDAY LOAN COMPANIES
Give local councillors the power to close down payday loan companies on local high streets, and stop them from opening.

HOUSE BUILDING
Increase the numbers of affordable homes by building on greenbelt land.

LOCAL HOSPITALS
When central government wants to close hospitals, local communities should have the overriding decision.

If you are interested in participating, and are between the ages of 18 to 40, a Harlow resident, and available on Saturday 5th April from 10am to 15.30, get in touch by calling 07597569149.

harlowconParticipants will receive £40.00 for attending, and lunch will be provided on the day.

For more information see: www.thepeoplespoll.net

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