an empty podium in a city hallLocal governments are overlooked in conversations about democracy and governance, UWindsor law professor Anneke Smit argues in an opinion piece published in the Toronto Star.

Law professors argue emergency measures threaten cities’ democratic decision-making

Local governments are “bleeding democracy” in their rush to address COVID-19, law professors Anneke Smit of the University of Windsor and Alexandra Flynn of the University of British Columbia argue in an opinion piece published Monday in the Toronto Star.

“In communities across Canada, meaningful, participatory governance has been thrust aside,” the two write, under states of emergency declared in 56 of 65 of the country’s largest municipalities. “This must change.”

They note that many of these cities have cancelled city council, committee, and public consultation meetings during these states of emergency, resulting in a lack of participatory governance while decisions with long-reaching impacts are being made.

Read the entire column, entitled “Use of municipal emergency powers has gone too far,” on the newspaper’s website.

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