Manchester City Council Economic Scrutiny Committee to discuss climate change in May; please get involved

On the morning of Wednesday 22nd May, Prof Kevin Anderson will be addressing Manchester City Council’s Economic Scrutiny Committee on the need for action on climate change. This follows his powerful address to the full council in January.

The committee is a body of ‘backbench’ councillors, who are not part of the cabinet. Their role is to examine local economic strategies including those of the Council. See Economic scrutiny committee

The meeting is a great opportunity for people concerned about climate change and social justice to shift the focus of local economic strategy away from growth and towards a low-carbon, high well-being and resilient local economy. We would like supporters to use this opportunity to contact their local councillors about steady state ideas and how they might implement them in Manchester.

  • If you have got 30 minutes it would be brilliant if you could e-mail your local councillor, using our suggestions below.
  • If you have a couple of hours it would be even better if you could go and see them.

Step one: You can find out who your local councillors are by going to councillors and entering your postcode. You can find out if they are members  of the on the economic scrutiny committee. We especially want to ensure people connect with these councillors but not exclusively.

Step two: Contact your councillor/s to set up a meeting or meetings

Step three: Please get in touch with us to tell us you are going steadystatemanchester@gmail.com. If you would like to talk it over before you go, we can match you up with a member of the group for a chat to plan what you want to say

Step four: Meet your councillor/s

Step five: Tell us how the meeting went

Useful documents: As well as these briefing notes, you may want to read and or use the following as a basis for discussion:

Obviously it is up to you what you say or write. Here are some ideas.

Explain why you are writing or have come to see them – You may want to say

  • you were encouraged that the full council invited Professor Kevin Anderson to address them and by Sir Richard Leese’s powerful blog post ‘Apocalypse Now’, published the following day where he reports that Prof Anderson told the councillors that if we want to have any chance of keeping the rise between 2 and 4 degrees we have to act now
  • you are delighted that the Economic Scrutiny Committee have invited Prof Anderson to address them

Give them the link details, https://steadystatemanchester.net/our-reports/, or a copy of the executive summary of Steady State Manchester reports and the separate list of recommendations .

Tell them

  • they have been written with the councillors in mind as a tool for residents and councillors to discuss Steady State Economics prior to the discussion with Professor Kevin Anderson on 22nd May.
  • the summary includes recommendations of things the council can do.

If you are meeting them, ask them how long they have got and what they are most keen on talking about, it may be the recommendations.

Register your concerns

  • that you are not convinced that the City’s priorities of unselective economic growth and sustainability are compatible.
  • about equity, according to Save the Children, more than a quarter of children in Manchester live in severe poverty (which is the highest rate in the country). This figure has remained unchanged despite growth. More than one in twenty working age adults is also unemployed.
  • that economic growth does not clearly bring benefits in terms of well-being.

You could ask which of the recommendations in the Executive Summary they think may be ‘quick wins’ – relatively easy to achieve and which might make the most difference

At the end, you might want to

  • request something you would particularly like them to say or do
  • ask whether they think any of the recommendations if implemented  might enable them to work more effectively work as a councillor to promote equity, sustainability, appropriate economic policies and/or well being.
  • what they want to do and ask how you as a citizen can help.

Thanks for your support. The scrutiny committee is a public meeting and you are welcome to attend, it starts at 10.30am. If you can come, we will look forward to seeing you on 22nd May.

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