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Council confirm radical new economic model to drive region post Covid-19

Posted on 6 May 2020

NORTH Ayrshire Council is set to outline radical long-term economic plans that will shape how they move forward post Covid-19.

Their Community Wealth Building (CWB) approach – which will see the Council and other ‘anchor organisations’ working in partnership with communities and businesses - marks a fundamental change in how we tackle inequality and poverty to create a fairer and more resilient local economy.

A social media campaign will begin this week providing an overview of how CWB works – before the strategy is launched on May 14 with a live Facebook conference with Council Leader Joe Cullinane, community representatives and leading international thinkers on CWB.

Councillor Joe Cullinane said: “The current economic model isn’t meeting the needs of North Ayrshire and hasn’t for a number of decades. We need to be bold in setting out a new approach to the economy.

“These are uncertain and worrying times. The economic impact of Covid-19 is potentially huge but we want to reassure our residents and businesses that we are developing a range of short and long term solutions to tackle this crisis.

“Those solutions will be found in the ‘new economy’, a return to business as usual will not suffice.

“For decades, like every area in the country, we’ve been chasing inward investment in the hope that economic growth will trickle down and benefit people who live in communities like ours. All that happened was the economic divide between affluent cities like London and Edinburgh and areas like ours in the West Coast of Scotland only grew deeper.

 “Even before this pandemic emerged North Ayrshire Council was at the forefront of new economic thinking. And that thinking is going to be even more important than ever post Covid-19.

 “Community Wealth Building always had the potential to transform our local economy. Essentially CWB is about working in partnership with communities and businesses to build a more resilient economy that works for local people, which supports fair work, encourages local spend by public bodies, uses the land and property the public sector owns for the common good, and supports new ownership models such as co-operatives, all of which helps to keep the wealth generated local.

 “Attracting inward investment will also be part of our plans especially across our major sites and we will welcome new employers and support them being part of our CWB ambitions providing fair work and building up local supply chains.

 "We will be providing more details over the coming weeks and we hope people will join us when we launch our Strategy later this month.”

 Check out the Council’s social media channels for details and tune in to the Council’s Facebook page on 14 May for the launch of the new Strategy.

 Joining the Council Leader will be;

 Matthew Brown, Leader of Preston City Council

 Neil McInroy, Centre for Local Economic Strategies

 Sarah McKinley, The Democracy Collaborative

 Donna Fitzpatrick from Fullarton Community Hub, Irvine.