How should we behave in the party? – have your say this Thursday at 6pm

There are some fantastic examples of supportive behaviour towards each other within our party, but we don’t always get it right.  So the Federal People and Development Committee is reviewing our Members’ Code of Conduct, and we want to hear from you what should be in it.

The current version can be found at Members’ Code of Conduct, and we also have an Online Code of Conduct and a Candidates Code of Conduct for Parliamentary candidates.  Fortunately they all say similar things.

But we want to make sure we are saying the right things. Talking not just about how members shouldn’t behave towards each other, but focusing on how we can all behave in ways that make every member’s experience in the party better.

If we believe that the role of the state is to enable all citizens to attain freedom, dignity and well-being and develop their talents to the full (and we do, it says so in the constitution) we should make it the role of our party as well. And a well written code of conduct helps us to articulate how individuals can behave to make that happen.

I’ve seen some fantastic examples of teamwork and supportive cultures around the party – from the great peer support Facebook groups to PPC mentoring schemes. We’ve got leaders at all levels of the party who exude empathy and care for others.  And both staff and volunteers deliver some fantastically enabling training and coaching.  By codifying this best practice we can make it easier to share it with all members.

Sometimes, thankfully less often, I’ve seen some pretty awful behaviour too.  Let’s face it, we are all people who really care about the state of the world.  And when we care so passionately, and when the stakes are so high, sometimes we don’t always all act in the least emotional manner.  We all thrive on robust debate but I hope that updating, bringing to conference and publicising a formal Code of Conduct will remind us all of how to be robust but respectful to others.

To get this right, we want to hear from as many members as possible.  We recently sent out an email survey which I’d encourage you all to fill in – and I’m sure some of you might comment here! And on Thursday 2nd December at 6pm Candy Piercy and I will be holding an online discussion – you can register here.

Please do join us or respond online – we want your voices to be heard in this consultation so that we can create the best framework to enable all of us to feel comfortable, welcome and heard in the party.

* Mary Regnier-Wilson is a campaigner from Chelmsford and the Chair of the Federal People and Development Committee.

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