Volunteers help uphold democracy

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PUBLIC-SPIRITED people are needed to help oversee standards in local democracy.

Durham County Council is recruiting two unpaid volunteers to take a key role in a new system of dealing with complaints against councillors.

The successful recruits will be called upon to give their views on complaints made against elected representatives, serving on the county council or town or parish authorities.

The county council will use this feedback to decide whether the complaint should be investigated.

Colette Longbottom, head of democratic services, said: “This role is important to the public’s perception of the effectiveness of the council’s standards committee and the maintenance of high standards of conduct.”

Candidates should should live or work in County Durham, have a keen interest in standards in public life and the desire to uphold democracy.

They should be able to demonstrate high standards of personal integrity, be objective and impartial, and have direct experience of implementing and upholding standards or dealing with complaints and customer care issues.

Training will be provided. Allowances will be paid for attendance at meetings.

Application forms are available from the council’s website www.durham.gov.uk.

Alternatively, call Clare Burrows on 03000 260 548 or email clare.burrows@durham.gov.uk.

The closing date for applications is July 6.