Statement of Community Involvement

Ended on the 4 March 2024

7. Hard to Reach Groups

7.1 Some people in the community have less chance than others to get involved in the planning process, so are under-represented. It is important to broaden the opportunities to enable these "hard to reach" groups to be involved, including, for example, young people, the elderly, homeless, people with disabilities, temporary residents and ethnic minorities.

7.2 The Council will design more inclusive participation exercises and, in some cases go out to such groups (e.g. through attending or contacting schools, care homes, supermarkets, post offices and local shops), rather than expect them to "come to us" (e.g. Council Offices or village halls). We will aim to ensure activities are adapted to suit needs.

7.3 The table below illustrates some of the most common barriers and possible solutions for engaging with some of the hard to reach groups in the community. Comments relating to this point in the questionnaire responses have also been reflected in the table. Consideration will be given to directly engaging with key groups in the community with particular needs, such as people with disabilities to ensure that they have adequate opportunities to participate.

Common Barriers to Community Involvement

Possible Solutions

Difficulties with written information

Language problems, literacy problems, learning disability

  • face to face surveys
  • telephone surveys
  • alternative formats e.g. large print
  • avoid jargon or complex language
  • produce simplified leaflets in layman's terms

Intimidated by Approach

Communication/literacy problems, hostile attitude towards staff, hostility, lack of confidence

  • face to face surveys
  • consider using representatives already known and trusted
  • think carefully about language chosen
  • explain process and reassure objectives and listen
  • provide feedback with reasons

Can't access the meeting venue

Transport difficulties, no child care available, timing difficult, physically inaccessible

  • plan meetings in accessible locations (public transport and adequate parking)
  • hold meetings at various times to suit range of needs
  • consider taking event to specific target groups on their premises e.g. care home/ school
  • consider providing childcare
  • check venue meets Disability Discrimination Act requirements
  • consider providing transport and or offer expenses

Lack of Time or resources

Working, families, lone parents, inadequate funding if voluntary group

  • go directly to respondents
  • keep activities simple and limit time-(People are generally busy)

Information rarely reaches some areas

Remote locations, individual care homes, school children, information format inappropriate

  • make use of contact through parish newsletters and village notice boards
  • link publicity shots with free newspapers
  • internet consultation as well as other alternatives
  • keep information simple and succinct- produce summary leaflet of each document at each stage
  • join up with local events where appropriate
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