Pop-Up Democracy - User Forum members have their say

Thursday 09 March 2017

Participants in our Insight project recently had the opportunity to have their say with their local council on issues that matter to them, particularly transport and accessibility.  The meetings were part of a series of on-going Pop Up Democracy events which are providing individuals with disability and older people with the opportunity to engage with key decision makers and give feedback on things that affect them.  The key focus of the Insight project has been about gathering individuals experiences of using public and community transport.

So far events have taken place with Belfast City Council and Derry City and Strabane Council with further events planned with the Community transport providers, Translink and the Inclusive Mobility and Transport Advisory Committee (IMTAC) in the coming weeks.pic 1

Members of Cedar’s User Forum, who have also been participating in the Insight project led at the meeting with Belfast City Council.  Speaking at the event Helen Robinson from the Ballymena User Forum member said "This was a new experience for me which I thoroughly enjoyed.  It was a great chance to feedback on the findings of the Insight project and I believe the council really listened to us and have agreed to update us on the issues we raised."  Stella Gilmartin, Equality and Diversity Officer with Belfast City council added " It was really good to be challenged by a user group on key issues.  Its exciting that we are going to meet again and follow up on the issues.  I look forward to meeting the Belfast User Forum to discuss key issues for the city".

Inclusion and Access Co-Ordinator with Derry City and Strabane Council, Louise Boyce, echoed that experience at the event in the North West, saying "I am happy with the event today as it gave me an opportunity to find out about the project and to inform the group about actions that Derry City and Strabane council are taking to support access and inclusion in the pan disability community"

The Insight project is a partnership between Cedar and Age Sector Platform funded through the Civic Activism Programme managed by the Building Change Trust.  Pop up democracy is a key mechanism for participants from Cedar and Age Sector platform to present the findings from the Insight project to either the decision makers or those who can influence decisions to help create real change for people with disabilities and older people.

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