I wrote last month that given how I had expressed my dissatisfaction with the process used by Unlock Democracy, the constitutional reform campaigning organisation, to elect members to its governing council the least I could do was to turn up at their AGM to support those who trying to do something about it.
So yesterday I spent a more enjoyable day than expected at Unlock Democracy’s AGM held at the NCVO HQ near King’s Cross. While the debates on the motions were a bit scrappy, the atmosphere was friendly, the issues important, and the keynote speakers — we had contributions from the slightly odd pairing of Andreas Whittam-Smith and Vince Cable — interesting. I’ve always found it fascinating to see how different organisations work and it was instructive to watch the different dynamics at work within an organisation that draws its members from as diverse a range of traditions as Unlock Democracy does.
I’ve come away a little bit reassured at the possibilities of cooperation in pursuit of a common purpose.
However, the important news for those concerned with the health of internal democracy within organisations is that the motions proposed by Chris Carrigan and Mark Pack, which became known for some reason during the meeting as the Carrigan-Pack motions, were passed — after a little bit of procedural argy-bargy. When proxy votes were taken into account the constitutional amendment was passed with a sufficient margin to meet the two thirds threshold and so the new rules will come into force.
Well, at least until the next AGM…