Calls For Merton Council To Respond To Residents' Tweets

Councillors will debate a "Tweetable" motion

A bite-sized motion is being presented to Merton Council, calling on them to respond to public concerns raised by Twitter.

At just 134 characters long, the Conservative motion is thought to be the first ever 'Tweetable' motion debated by Merton Council.

Tory councillors said a number of residents have complained in recent months that the council refuses to respond to their tweets on a whole range of Council services, including litter, fly tipping, street lighting, parks, noise pollution and anti-social behaviour.

The council's approach to Twitter was also by questioned by one resident at the September Council meeting.

Councillor Hamish Badenoch said: "Just like the internet before, social media is changing how residents interact with service providers. Many people now tweet rather than phone, write or email an organisation because it’s instant and better fits their busy lifestyles.

"Merton’s Labour-run council is spending millions on its so called customer contact project but what’s the point if it won’t listen to what residents are saying?

"Various other councils around London have embraced Twitter as an inexpensive way of increasing engagement with their residents and improving democratic accountability. Yet – just as with webcasting - Merton Labour seem to be running scared from greater scrutiny by the very people they were elected to serve."

The Conservative motion to be debated on Wednesday (November 18) reads: "Merton Council must listen to residents more and resolves to engage with their concerns through Twitter to achieve this. #Mertonlisten".

November 13 , 2015