Over the past year, the Scottish Green Party’s membership has increased in size over seven-fold to over 8,000 people. In Edinburgh and West Lothian we now have over 2,000 members.
This phenomenal change means now is the right time to consider what structures our party needs at a local level to provide opportunities for the increased membership to engage with the party. By doing this we can better enable the party to continue to go from strength to strength in the coming months and years.
We have conducted a survey among our members, in order to help us create some options for future ways of working. These will be discussed at two discussion groups leading up to a motion being taken to and Extraordianary General Meeting on August 27th.
At the Edinburgh & West Lothian Branch Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 26th February 2015, a motion was passed which instructed the Edinburgh Green Party Committee to carry out a review of existing local party structures. The motion stated:
The AGM instructs the Committee to review the Branch Constitution and Standing Orders and to bring proposed amendments to an Extraordinary General Meeting within 6 months. The review should in particular consider:
what options there are for democratic and participative structures for party members in Edinburgh
the opportunities for members to submit items for discussion to appropriate meetings
the formation of sub-branches rather than local area groups
the position of West Lothian within the Branch
the organisational structure of any Branch Committee
At the EGM in August we will come to a final decision about what structure we need so the party can work most effectively at a local level. Before then, a Working Group* has been established to look into options and consult the membership.
The first stage of the consultation is a survey that seeks to collect the views of local party members, to best enable the Working Group to come up with options. You will have an opportunity during the summer to comment on those options and, of course, the EGM in August is when all local party members can vote on the best option(s).
* The working group is made up of members of the Edinburgh Green Party committee, a representative of the Green councillors, and party members. All party members were invited to join via the ‘announce’ email list and at branch meetings.