Members of the public raised concerns about safety and potential intimidation before the start of this consultation. In order to address these concerns, and to maximise public engagement, the Council made the decision to collect addresses to aid in analysis, but remove them from submissions before they were made public.
On this basis, the consultation documents and submission form stated that names, but not contact details, would be made public. However, the Council received further feedback during the consultation that members of the public were concerned that identifying themselves could result in potential harassment. We reviewed the position again and in light of some of the behaviour experienced towards our own Councillors and staff, consider the concerns legitimate. Accordingly, we decided that names would also not be released.
This means, when releasing the submission data and content, we will only include submitters’ postcode and suburb. The Council is meeting its obligations under the Local Government Act with regard to our position on disclosure and we are taking sensible steps to protect those who expressed concerns about participating in the engagement process.