The main principles of empowerment are to actively:
- Promote individual empowerment
- Promote collective empowerment
The idea of empowerment is that those who have little or no influence (such as excluded people), are able to acquire the capacity to have informed opinions, to take initiatives, make independent choices and influence change. It also means that those with influence actively change their attitudes and rules and change the way decisions are made through engaging with excluded people.
Community empowerment is the giving of confidence, skills and power to enable communities to shape and influence their own development. The following provides you with some of the tools to feel more empowered and less disenfranchised with life in Central Bedfordshire:
Central Bedfordshire E-Petitions
An e-petition is a petition which collects signatures online. This allows petitions and supporting information to be made available to a much wider audience than a traditional paper based petition.
Anyone who lives, works or studies in Central Bedfordshire can submit or sign an e-petition. 100 signatures are required for an e-petition to be submitted to the next stage. If you create an e-petition you will be required to provide the Council with your contact details. We may ask the relevant service team to respond to you on the issue you raise. If you sign an e-petition on this website, you will be required to give basic personal information to verify that the signature is genuine. Your name (but no other details) will be published on the epetition website. The email address is personal to one person, ie you, and can be used once to sign. No other person can use this email address to sign, even if they share it with you.
To create a new E-Petition visit the Central Bedfordshire Council E-Petition Page
Further E-Petitions Resources
Localism - New Rights & Powers for Local Communities
What are the new rights and powers for communities?
The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has taken action to give local communities new rights and powers.
This means that community, voluntary and charity groups now have the opportunity to take the initiative when it comes to deciding how things like planning or development decisions are made, what happens to local assets, or how local public services are run in their local area.Community Rights - The new Rights contained within the Localism Act came into effect in 2012 devolving power from government to communities, local authorities and individuals. These include:
- Community Right to Bid - You can use the Community Right to Bid to 'pause' the sale of a building or land you care about, giving your community time to develop a bid to buy it.
- Community Right to Build - The Right to Build gives communities the power to build new shops, housing or community facilities without going through the normal planning process.
- Community Right to Challenge - Are you looking to run a local service? The Right to Challenge gives local groups the opportunity to express their interest in taking over a local service where they think they can do it differently and better.
- The Community Right to Reclaim Land - helps individuals, communities and other local organisations improve their local area. It gives them the right to ask that unused or under used land owned by public bodies is brought back into beneficial use, and even bid to buy it.
In addition you may also wish to explore Neighbourhood Plans, Community Shares, Community Right to Manage and Community Cashback and the Community Right to Contest.
The new rights and powers for communities are detailed on Central Beds Council's 'Rights and powers for local communities' Page