The key challenge and opportunity presented by Covid-19 is the importance of recognising that central government control of public health issues will never be as satisfactory as local control under local health officers who understand their local communities.
The Harrogate Agenda has six demands to improve our democracy and governance centred on a recognition of the People‚’s sovereignty with its second demand being for ‚’Real Local Democracy‚’. This sets out that the foundation of our democracy shall be the counties (or local units as may be defined), which shall become constitutional bodies exercising under the control of their peoples all powers of legislation, taxation and administration not specifically granted by the people to the national government whose focus will be on national issues.
It is regrettable that the policy over recent years of centralising health control into a small number of regional bodies has taken away local control of health issues and left central government floundering as it imposes a one policy fits all hitting large parts of the country quite unnecessarily. Coivid-19 has exposed the folly of big government knows best so the time for ‚’Real Local Democracy‚’ has never been more needed.