A diverse democracy: Building a Wales for all

15 Apr 2016

Read ‘A Diverse Democracy: Building a Wales for All’ here

At its heart, democracy is a celebration of variety.

Democracy requires that arguments are tested, scrutinised and checked, from inception to delivery. That’s why it’s important that the backgrounds of those doing that are as diverse as possible – to get the broadest perspectives based on the facts and the experiences of people in Wales.

And it’s why no one group should have a monopoly on representation. We need to shatter the glass ceiling in the Assembly.

So today we’re proud to launch our manifesto on diversity – our ‘asks’ for the Welsh parties ahead of May 5th.

A proper understanding and response to our problems and challenges Wales faces requires the participation of all the communities of Welsh society. If some groups are significantly less engaged and represented than others, this fosters and reinforce inequality. When voices are excluded, democracy suffers.

As we move to a more ‘networked’ and participative model of governance, there’s a risk that this exclusion gets worse - louder and more privileged voices have the biggest sway, at the expense of those who have been excluded from the political process.  

Wales has done better on this in recent years. But the image of the politician as a grey haired, grey suited, middle-aged man should no longer hold.

In some areas the National Assembly for Wales has been very strong - such as gender representation, and the statutory duty to include different demographics in the process of policy-making. But there remains the risk that these gains are fragile.

We call on all parties to join Stonewall Cymru, Women Making a Difference and the Women’s Institute, and sign up to the policies in our Diversity manifesto we launch today.

Let’s ensure that our community of communities in Wales is adequately reflected in politics. Welsh democracy is growing and developing all the time. We can grow together – and democracy can only benefit.

Read ‘A Diverse Democracy: Building a Wales for All’ here


1 Responses to A diverse democracy: Building a Wales for all

Jacques Protic 27 Apr 2016

As a 'foreigner' living in North Wales where 'diversity' is largely a 'dirty word', I could only manage a wry smile after reading your 'mission statements'!
In the post-devolution Wales, it appears racism and Orwellian practices come well ahead of any consideration for diversity or inclusiveness or even respect for the basic Human Rights and most visible in North Wales for now:
No jobs in the public sector for the non-Welsh speakers (Gwynedd 100% 'bilingual'; Anglesey 99% 'bilingual'; Conwy (A massively English speaking County has 95% 'bilinguals' and similar pattern developing elsewhere) - Fair or reasonable to prioritise Welsh speakers often well above competence in a small nation where English is the first language for 80% of its people?
Then you have the 'Wenglish' speakers of around 13% (No full literacy in Welsh) who care little what language people speak in Wales and finally 7% of the 'real Welsh' who have self-granted 'exceptionalism and 'entitlement' culture demanding their right to speak Welsh and live through Welsh anywhere in Wales! 
Another example of practices verging upon perhaps a blatant racism is to be found within the North Wales Police. A non-devolved Police Force serving huge urban areas close to Cheshire then down the coast Westwards stretching all the way to Anglesey no longer employs anyone who is not a Wesh speaker (They only have 0.8% officers from minority background)!
More information on www.glasnost.org.uk and some interesting 'news items' from North Wales:  http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/language-campaigners-say-we...http://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/gwynedd-housing-group-c...
None of the issues I raised here and elsewhere are permitted to be openly debated in the Welsh Media - Censorship is beyond belief especially on the part of BBC Wales - Diversity what Diversity?

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