Immediate Release:
June 8, 2010

At today’s
council meeting, COPE councilor Ellen Woodsworth will introduce a motion
to gather information on how other cities deal with public engagement
and consultation processes.

Currently, the City of Vancouver’s
public consultation processes are managed by a variety of city
departments, agencies and
boards and delivered using different goals, budget levels, tools and
methodologies. The efficacy of some of these processes have been put
into question by several residents groups in recent years

According
to Woodsworth,
“it’s crucial that Vancouver residents have a say in how their city is
run. Too often, neighbourhood groups feel like their voices aren’t being
heard and that that there’s no real accountability in our consultation
processes.”

Several other cities, like Montreal, have independent
public consultation offices – a possibility for Vancouver that the
motion addresses.

"Both the Coalition of Progressive Electors
and Vision Vancouver said they strongly supported the idea of creating
an arms-length office of public consultation while they were in
opposition," said Think City Chair Neil Monckton. "Think City still
believes this type of office is an important tool for making BC’s
largest city more open, accountable and accessible to citizens between
elections.“

Councilor Woodsworth brings motion on an independent office to engage with the public