THE July meeting of Thurrock Council was described in some quarters as a “shambles”.
Thames Crossing campaigners were ordered to leave the council chamber after being unable to speak on the Lower Thames Crossing item and the meeting was suspended.
Leader of the Labour Group, Councillor Oliver Gerrish has reacted to the meeting by calling for the council to improve the way it deals with members of the public:
“The broader issues highlighted at the July council meeting demonstrate a council that needs to up its game when it comes to dealing with and involving members of the public. ”
Many of us were embarrassed to be a part of that meeting and surprised that the Thames Crossing campaigners were not being updated much more closely with what the council was planning.
We all need to take responsibility for dealing with that. ”For the part of the Labour group, we want to see full resident engagement in the process over coming years, including a seat at the new overview and scrutiny committee which we proposed. The Lower Thames Crossing is the biggest issue Thurrock will have to deal with for many years – it’s crucial that the voices of all our residents are heard fully and not relegated to the sidelines.
“Finally, I also think it’s right that the council takes the opportunity to reflect more fully on how residents are able to engage with council decision-making and what more we can do to increase the level of transparency in council business.”