We must find ways to come together to make decisions in the best interests of everyone. There will always be competing priorities on where to spend time and resources.
However, when people come together to listen and learn from each other, we are able to understand the nature of the problems that affect us. If we are motivated to overcome the divisions and tensions that exist, we can make decisions that not only benefit the local community but help to build a socially just, economically equitable and environmentally sustainable society.
There are different ways to make decisions in groups. Creating spaces for healthy disagreement and sharing of ideas is not something that happens by accident. We need to find ways to teach ourselves and each other how to do it.
Many ideas don’t require too much fuss. Most people are happy when someone is motivated to get on with it and are encouraging and supportive.
Some ideas do need a conversation and ironing out especially where many people are involved. We always invite people into a discussion where we can deliberate and make the best choices. We seek to incorporate everyone’s views and compromise.
We should always strive for consensus. Consensus does not mean everybody agrees. It means that nobody firmly disagrees. Where this is impossible, then we must vote.