Civility in public life

Increasing intimidation of politicians and increasing toxicity of public debate is having an impact on the democracy of our country.


Across the UK, there are growing concerns about the impact an increasing level of public intimidation and toxicity of debate is having on our country’s democratic processes. In response, the LGA is working closely with WLGA, COSLA and NILGA to coordinate a programme of work entitled ‘Civility in public life’, primarily aimed at

  • articulating good standards for anyone engaging in public and political discourse
  • understand the scale and impact of intimidation and abusive behaviour on our membership organisations, and develop recommendations for achieving positive debate and public decision-making on a local level
  • to support our members and all democratically elected local representatives in addressing intimidation and abuse, so they deliver the best on behalf of their communities

Councillors' guide to handling intimidation

Together with WLGA, we have published some practical steps that councillors and councils can take to protect themselves as a person in a public position.

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Glitch is a not-for-profit organisation that exists to end online abuse. Glitch founder (and former councillor) Seyi Akiwowo joined us at the 2019 LGA Annual Conference to talk about her work:

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