Residents of Fagersta can make e-proposals
Initiative for people of all ages to take part in governance
- February 19, 2020 18:30
The municipality of Fagersta in Sweden has initiated a system allowing for electronic proposals to be made by the residents of the municipality in areas of their interest or in which they think improvements should be introduced.
The purpose of this new service is to involve residents in the management of the city. Proposals can be submitted by anyone who lives and/or works in the city, regardless of age. This initiative also includes children and young people who are generally excluded from governance because they cannot vote.
The e-proposal initiative has three stages
The first stage includes the submission of the proposal itself via an electronic form available on the municipality’s website. The main requirement is to have a title and a piece of short but clear information regarding the idea. There is a warning against any offensive, racist or discriminatory language.
Another reason why a proposal may not be published is that during the last 12 months a similar proposal has been submitted and a decision has been reached. Also, one should pay attention to whether their proposal is within the Municipality`s competence and authority.
The second stage involves the consideration of the proposal by the municipal staff within three working days.
In the third stage, the proposal is published on the municipality's website and within 90 days the other residents can comment and vote on it.
This is a great example of how the public and citizens can be involved in the governance of the municipality in which they live and work. It is becoming increasingly necessary to distinguish such services that give direct access to a given management structure.
Moreover, empowering children and young people to participate and have a say in issues that directly affect them is a good way of public education and the creation of civic awareness.
This is a much easier and cost-effective way of conducting citizen consultation than organizing a referendum. It is also a way for citizens themselves to feel closer to the governing authorities.
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