It often seems that policy conversations and decisions unfold without the vital input of the very people affected by the policies in question. But this doesn’t always have to be the case. Now more than ever, we see citizens and communities standing up to make a change. With that in mind, we’ve collected some articles that discuss civic participation in politics, from protest to political office. Keep reading for more!This week’s Morning Brief was prepared by Katerina. Sign up here to receive the Morning Brief directly to your inbox.
- If you want to make change from inside the political establishment, you could consider running for a seat in Toronto’s city council. Based on an analysis of the council’s history since amalgamation, Lauren Birch offers some tips on how Torontonians can maximize their chances of breaking into City Hall. [Birch/PPGR]
- How can young and rising leaders contribute to true inclusion and diversity in Toronto? Local non-profit CivicAction recently hosted a community event to explore this question, with a focus on elevating marginalized voices in city-building conversations. Join Katerina Stamadianos (hey, that’s me!) as she reflects on her time at the conference. [Stamadianos/PPGR]
- Last year, an image of a protestor raising a fist against police brutality in Charlotte, North Carolina made rounds on the internet. This month, Braxton Wilson, the subject of the photograph, was voted into the Charlotte city council. Read more about his transition from activism to public office here. [Walters/The Guardian]
- What is the power of a protest – especially when it’s up against entrenched business interests? When it comes to housing, condo developers tend to edge out local dissent, even in the face of growing concerns about affordability. David Nickle reports on a protest against a proposed Parkdale condo development at a recent city hall meeting – though councillors approved the project anyway. [Nickle/The Star]
- Some policy issues go beyond the local or national level. This is true of concerns over climate change, where non-state actors taken an active role in representing the interests of civil society. In the aftermath of the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, this article notes the increasing impact of non-state actors on international negotiations. [Bazely, Boran, Sharma/The Conversation]