Everyone knows that “All members” meetings are generally very poorly attended and that the majority of decisions to be taken at all members meetings are, in reality, taken by small numbers of attendees, mostly committee members.
This is a regrettable result of general indifference on the part of members compounded by increased workloads and demands on time which has resulted in many branch committees taking decisions for and on behalf of their members without proper engagement and consultation with them.
Now that both candidates have declared the number of branches (roughly, in Ms Millar’s case) that have nominated them will Padraig / Patrick and Alison be calling on the branches that nominated them to ensure that they circulate all election materials from both candidates to their branch members?
This is an excellent opportunity for both candidates to show and to prove their commitment to true democracy and a level playing field.
Padraig / Patrick has already been calling for a level playing field (though some have seen this as a “playing the victim” move) via his somewhat nonsensical online “pledge” here . Padraig / Patrick’s statement “We believe that this election should be fought honestly, fairly and on a level playing field” is commendable. In reality both he and Ms Millar already have it within their grasp to ensure a greater degree of democracy and a level playing field in this process by acting as detailed above and ensuring that their respective support networks follow suit.
For example, those who hold branch committee positions who have signed the pledge, and there are a few, let’s see them back up their support for a level playing field by acting in line with the proposal above.
To not do so would suggest that genuine democracy is a casualty of the current process and that these “pledges” are mere window dressing and playing to the crowd.
Let’s see some real and genuine democracy Padraig / Patrick and Alison. You don’t need pledges, you just need to act.