Let's Talk Islington launch in Caledonian Park (L-R) Islington resident Sandra Ashitey; Islington Council Leader Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz; Islington resident Kelton Rigobert; Inequality Task Force member Navinder Kaur and Nathalie Renaud, Director of Elizabeth House

Let’s Talk Islington: Two weeks left for Islington residents to feed into biggest ever engagement to build a more equal future for the borough

People who live, work and study in Islington are being urged to take part in Islington Council’s biggest-ever public engagement to help create a more equal future for the borough, as the council issues a final call for feedback and ideas.

As part of Let’s Talk Islington, local people are being asked to share their personal experiences of inequality and, together with Islington Council, drive the change they want to see in the borough to create a place where everyone has an equal chance to thrive.

Spearheaded by Council Leader Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz, Let’s Talk Islington is a huge and pioneering engagement programme seeking to lead the way in addressing some of the most complex challenges people face by putting the community firmly at the heart of its plans.

Launched in November last year, councillors and council engagement officers have been out and about in Islington – in community centres, parks, schools, businesses, estates, religious sites and markets – inviting people to chat about their experience of life in the borough and what its future should be.

So far, the campaign has seen more than 1,000 people share their experiences and ideas with the council. The consultation closes on Sunday, 27 March, but until then anyone can feed back online via the dedicated Let’s Talk Islington web pages and social media. In addition the campaign has seen face-to-face conversations and a series of discussions, workshops, and creative activities take place all over the borough. The final in-person engagement events will take place over the weekend and next week – full details are available at www.islington.gov.uk/letstalk

Cllr Comer-Schwartz said: “Having been born and grown up right here in Islington, and now as Leader of the Council, I’m deeply committed to improving the quality of people’s lives in this borough.

“To everyone who lives, works or studies here, you will all have different experiences of inequality and thoughts on how things could be better. We want to design a new era of public service delivery, centred on the people in our communities, who live these experiences every day and are key to creating a more equal future.

“We want to hear what you have to say, so that we can draw on as much feedback and as many ideas as possible and work with you to design new ways of supporting our communities for years to come.

“I’m really pleased with the enthusiasm and response rate so far, but know that there is yet more valuable insight we can hear from our communities. So please don’t miss your chance to contribute, to have your say and join us as we shape a better, more equal borough for everyone.”

To find out more and get involved, visit: www.islington.gov.uk/letstalk

The engagement period of Let’s Talk Islington will culminate in a series of workshops in the spring in which residents, community groups and local stakeholders will be invited to build on the insights gathered and challenges identified, and develop solutions. This will inform the council’s strategic planning, with further details announced in the autumn.

A competition has also been launched for young people to feed creatively into Let’s Talk Islington and their vision for a more equal future, with a £100 shopping voucher up for grabs for the winner, a £50 voucher for second place and three £25 vouchers as runners-up prizes. The competition asks young people to tell the council what a fair and equal future in Islington means to them. Their entry can use any medium, including video, song, poetry, writing, art, crafts, drawing and painting. The competition runs until 3 June.

Also as part of Let’s Talk Islington, the council has assembled an Inequality Task Force of civic, academic, and business leaders with a mix of expertise across health, poverty reduction, and education, both with locally-rooted expertise and from further afield, to bring new perspectives in tackling inequality. Their experience of working in partnership with communities will be invaluable in putting people at the centre of the council’s plans as they develop.

 

Notes to editor

The Let’s Talk Islington creative competition for young people is open to any Islington resident aged 17 or under on 3 June, 2022. All submissions need to be emailed to letstalkislington@islington.gov.uk before 5pm on 3 June, 2022. Judging takes place on 17 June by Leader of the Council, Cllr Kaya Comer-Schwartz, and Executive Member for Children, Young People and Families, Cllr Michelline Ngongo. The winners will receive Love2Shop vouchers as detailed above, have their submission published on the council’s website and social media, and will present their work to the judges at a public exhibition.

Media contact information

If you are a member of the media and would like more information please contact:

Islington Council media team – media@islington.gov.uk or 020 7527 2307.  Out of hours: 07769 163303

If you are a member of the public with a general question about the council please contact:

Access Islington – www.islington.gov.uk/contact-us or 020 7527 2000