The provisions of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 relating to Participation Requests came into force on 1 April 2017. This part of the Act enables community bodies to request to be involved in decisions and put forward their ideas on how services could be changed to improve outcomes for the community.
You can read about the Act on the Scottish Government’s website and there is also a Scottish Government guidance document, as well as guidance from the Scottish Community Development Centre, which give advice on how to go about making a participation request.
If you are considering making a participation request
If your Community Body is thinking about making participation request to the council the first thing we would recommend doing is getting in touch with us for assistance in getting started. This can identify if South Lanarkshire Council is the right public body to contact in relation to the issue in which you are interested and we can also give advice as to any existing consultations or decision making processes that you could be involved in without requiring to make a formal participation request. You can email us for this purpose at email@example.com or phone us on 0303 123 1015 and ask to speak to the Participation Requests Officer.
How to make a participation request
To make a request, you must be making the request as part of an eligible community body. This means the body must have membership open to the community and whose work benefits the community.
What happens after you send your participation request?
The first thing that the Participation Request Officer will do is check whether your request complies with the statutory requirements in the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015. If it does not then the council will write to you setting out what, if any, items or information are required to make it a valid request.
If your request complies with all the necessary requirements an acknowledgement will be sent which will let you know when the council will provide you with a decision. The statutory period for a decision is thirty working days from the date of the validation of your request however that can be extended to forty five working days if the request requires another public body to be involved in the process.
Decisions on participation requests will be made by Council Officers who have the rank of Head of Service or higher.
Following the issue of a decision notice to you the council must put a copy of this on their website. However any personal information will be removed before publication.