Pembrokeshire County Council has unveiled its Diversity in Democracy programme.
The ambitious work, which has been agreed by the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA), will ensure council chambers are more representative of their communities following local elections in May 2022.
This is an incredibly important step-change for Councils in committing to tasking themselves to reflect more closely the diverse communities they serve.
Leader of the Council, Cllr David Simpson said: “Pembrokeshire County Council commits to becoming a Diverse Council in 2022. This critical piece of work will provide a clear, public commitment to improving diversity.
“We will build on our current culture and showcase that we are open and welcoming to all. We have a great deal of work to do over the next five months and will be working with partners to engage and encourage people from under-represented groups to stand for election.”
It is also critical that the council supports candidates through what can sometimes be a complex and daunting process – and would urge all political parties to do more to make their selection processes as flexible as possible.
By making this commitment, Pembrokeshire County Council Officers will work together with Members promoting an inclusive, progressive organisation by developing an action plan to encourage recruitment of candidates from underrepresented groups.
Some community engagement events are planned for the New Year to raise awareness and understanding, for people interested in becoming a councillor.
Cllr Simpson added: “We have set ambitious targets for candidates from under-represented groups at the local elections – but with proactive engagement with local community groups and partner organisations we will work harder and go further to ensure we see real change. Diversity in democracy will be at the heart of the core values in this council.”
To help raise awareness and understanding of the council’s vision, Members have taken part in a social media campaign to highlight the work they do – and how they help make a difference to empower communities. Take a look at our social channels and check out the ‘become a councillor’ campaign.
A Mentoring group has been set up to speak to candidates thinking of standing as a Councillor.
For further information visit https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/councillors-and-committees/interested-in-being-a-councillor
Additionally, please check out this story for the Become A Councillor virtual event.