Advancing a constitution to protect human rights and the natural world
Citizen Network is committed to deep and meaningful democracy. Democracy is under threat in many countries, and even in countries that are treated as democracies, like the United Kingdom, there are many very serious problems. The End Westminster Rule movement is led by Gavin Barker and it aims to bring people and groups together around a clear and simple charter outlining ten clear demands for radical democratic reform.
The charter seeks to achieve a permanent transfer of power from Westminster to the regions and nations of the UK. Its guiding principle is that real democracy resides with local people and communities and not with an unaccountable Westminster elite.
The absence of real democracy is at the heart of the multiple injustices we face. We cannot hope to address the climate crisis, an underfunded NHS, the housing crisis, or growing inequality without at the same time addressing a broken democracy that no longer responds to the needs of its citizens.
The draft charter is modelled on the achievements of Chartist movement 200 years ago which mobilised millions of people to demand a vote and a voice over their own affairs. Their original charter was short and clearly worded and we believe this approach stands the best chance of engaging the broader public.
We are in the process of canvassing diverse groups and movements and urging them to get behind a unifying agenda for change. We do not see ourselves as leading this initiative but in catalysing and fomenting change through a broad alliance of organisations all moving in the same direction. A provisional date for the launch of the charter is Spring 2022 and the charter will be submitted to all the main parties asking for their response.
The launch itself is the starting gun, not a one off event. We will agitate for change using every means at our disposal. Even if the main political parties ignore us, we will persist in polite but repeated contacts to key party representatives; we will continue to expand our network, and we will contact members of local and national media in order to trigger a much needed public conversation as to what kind of society and democracy we wish for ourselves in future.
Whether your are an individual, a community group, a campaign organisation or larger NGO, please join us! You are welcome to suggest amendments to the charter but bear in mind that no charter, however carefully worded, will perfectly reflect what each of us wants to see. A more pragmatic approach is to aim for something that is 'good enough' rather than 'perfect'. It may not contain every demand we want but there is enough in there to make each of us want to back it.
Contact Gavin Barker, his details are below.