Having your say in the Community Wealth Building consultation

About the consultation

The Scottish Government has a new Consultation open, asking for views on putting Community Wealth Building into action.

Everyone is welcome to give their input – ordinary people in communities, as well as organisations.

It will be open until the 25th April 2023.

Find out more and take part in the Community Wealth Building consultation here.

What is Community Wealth Building?

Community Wealth Building (often shortened to ‘CWB’) is an approach to economic development. It’s different to the current approach in several ways, and focuses on how the economy can work to increase equality and wellbeing.

You can read about the 5 principles behind Community Wealth Building in CLES’s blog ‘How to Build Community Wealth’ or watch their short video on how it works.

Our tips on responding to Consultations

These tips come from our experience and community groups’ experiences of responding to other formal consultations.

If you prefer video to reading, you can watch our tips here:

1. Use this consultation as part of a process, and think about now as well as the future

  • This is a good opportunity to have conversations with other people who are interested in the issue, such as other voluntary organisations and staff in the Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) and Council who are part of local care services.
  • Your MSPs will be involved when it gets to the Scottish Parliament stage. You can keep them informed now, so they know how people feel.
  • Take up issues that could get sorted now, such as when people don’t now what they are entitled to. You can raise these issues through the independent social care advice groups or the HSCP staff. Your MSPs and local Councillors may also be able to help with that.

2. Think about the wider issues as well

  • You can go wider than the topics covered in the consultation.
  • Consultations can be used to raise awareness and get conversations going about the wider issues, such as how our society values older and disabled people, and staff working in these roles.
  • You can look at how local communities contribute to supporting people alongside the formal care services, and what they could do in the future.
  • All these conversations can go on for much longer than this consultation. They will be part of how you and other local people make changes happen and help you contribute to conversations and plans on issues like resilient local communities.

3. Use the conversations and responses that collective organisations and networks are planning

  • Find out if groups or networks that you are part of are planning a collective response.
  • Some HSCPs are planning to hold consultation sessions for people in the local area. This is to make it easier for people to respond and to hear about issues they can pick up on now to improve local services.
  • Check if these are happening. Ask about it if no one seems to be organising anything.
  • Use these routes for the longer-term – to feed into other conversations and as part of taking changes on.

4. Don’t be put off by the consultation document

  • Find one or 2 people who really like reading this sort of thing to read it and do a summary for others in your group or team. Or share out reading it among the group with a few sections each.
  • You can skim the sections that don’t apply to your situation, or where the question is aimed at different people.
  • Remember that lots of people find formal consultation documents long and hard to understand. If you are finding it hard going – take a break, get some more coffee and a chocolate biscuit, or find a pal to help, and ideally all 3.  And you get the opportunity at the end to tell them that it could have been easier.

5. Make your notes in a word file, rather than on the on-line system

  • If you make your notes on an ordinary document, like Word or Pages, it is easier to make changes than if you write directly in the online response form.
  • You can share it round the group and join up sections done by several people.
  • Share the response with members before you send it in, so people have more opportunities to comment and get involved.
  • You can share with other groups and networks you know, so they can use your views as part of their response.
  • Once you are ready, you can copy and paste the sections into the online form, or you can send it directly to the Scottish Government team.
  • You can send your response to people like your MSPs and Councillors, so they know what you think.

6. You don’t have to answer all the questions, and you can add in other points

  • You can skip questions.
  • Use the parts that let people add more comments to raise things that are related to the topics but are wider than or different from the specific question.

7. Tell people about it

  • This is one way people and collective groups are part of democratic processes and share their experience, knowledge and ideas. Tell people you are doing it through social media, newsletters, etc.
  • Use this to remind people why groups and networks where people come together to support each other and make change happen are important.

Good luck!

Find out more and take part in the Community Wealth Building consultation here.