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View The Community Involvement Framework 2012

Cover image Community Involvement Framework 2012

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Guiding Principles

Guiding Principles of Community Involvement - City of Brantford Commitment

The City of Brantford recognizes the importance of involving citizens in the development of policy, programs and services. Community involvement is also the basis for building healthy, strong and inclusive communities.

The City of Brantford is committed to supporting an engaged community by ensuring there is a range of opportunities for the community to become knowledgeable about local government and actively involved in civic life in the City of Brantford.

The following Principles of Community Involvement will guide all future City of Brantford activities:

Value of Participation

  • Citizen participation is recognized as an asset, is valued and encouraged

Careful Planning & Preparation

  • The purpose and the process are clear to all participants at the outset
  • Through comprehensive and inclusive planning, we will ensure that the design, organization, and convening of the process serve both a clearly defined purpose and the needs of the participants
  • Community Involvement plans will be designed to involve the appropriate people at the appropriate time in the appropriate way
  • A balance and range of community perspectives will be provided to decision makers for consideration in the decision process

Inclusion and Demographic Diversity

  • Incorporate a diversity of people, voices, ideas and information to lay the groundwork for quality outcomes and democratic legitimacy
  • Everyone potentially affected by the process has an opportunity to become involved
  • Barriers to access are recognized and overcome to ensure diverse, inclusive and balanced participation

Collaboration & Shared Purpose

  • Support and encourage community members, governments, community institutions, and others to work together to advance the common good of the community

Openness and Learning

  • Are open-ended processes in which no specific outcomes are pre-determined
  • Help all involved listen to each other, explore new ideas unconstrained by predetermined outcomes, learn and apply information in ways that generate new options, and rigorously evaluate the process
  • Are based on a mutual two-way learning between citizens and decision makers

Transparency & Trust

  • The process will be clear, open, respectful, fair, effective and transparent
  • Public records of the scribes, outcomes, range of views and ideas expressed and final decisions will be made available to all participants

Impact & Action

  • Ensure each participatory effort has real potential to make a difference, and that participants are aware of that potential
  • The community has an opportunity to provide feedback at the various stages of the process

Sustained Involvement & Participant Culture

  • Allow for serious, substantive, deliberative, in-depth communication of values and principles, choices and trade-offs in search of common ground
  • Promote a culture of participation with programs and institutions that support ongoing quality community involvement

Open Communication

  • The involvement process and each step of its progress will be communicated using clear and inclusive language via a variety of formats and channels of communication while ensuring accessibility to all
  • Communication is clear, timely and effective

Continuous Improvement

  • Seek better ways of engaging the community and providing efficient and effective community notice and involvement processes
  • Community involvement will be evaluated for improvement of future involvement activities
  • Citizens are involved in the evaluation process
  • The focus is on outcomes, not merely outputs. Outcomes include many different types of benefits or changes