Posted by: VPSN | September 12, 2011

Working Group Profile: Democratic Spaces

On Saturday, Nov. 19, Vancouver’s residents will elect a new municipal government and choose how they want to finance the city’s capital plan (which covers investments in libraries, parks, public transportation, housing, etc.).

With the upcoming election and the impact it will have on public spaces, now is an excellent time to join the VPSN’s Democratic Spaces Working Group. The group will be:

  • Co-hosting “Last Candidate Standing,” an exciting municipal debate where the audience votes off candidates and is entertained with live performances;
  • Operating the Vancouver Votes website, a clearinghouse of election-related issues;
  • Preparing the VPSN’s manifesto.

In the past, the working group has focused on two dimensions of the relationship between democratic health and public spaces:

  1. Public space as the physical site of democratic behaviour:
    • Looking at poster cylinders, public information sources, voting, and the consultation process.
  2. As a forum for provoking discussion on key policy issues:
    • Civil City, Housing and Homelessness.

After the election, the Democratic Spaces Working Group will continue to work towards making Vancouver more democratic. A democratic city has open and accessible spaces and processes, promotes the interaction of people, the exchange of ideas, and facilitates public deliberations on issues and solutions. We will work towards a more democratic city by collaborating with other interested people and organizations, developing solutions to current issues, and making recommendations to fellow decision-makers.

If you are interested in making Vancouver a more democratic place, join us Wednesday, Sept. 14 at 6:30 p.m. in room 3255 at SFU’s Harbour Centre.

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