Gnarr – council revolutionaries from Iceland

Gnarr – council revolutionaries from Iceland
Lesley Riddoch

An interesting idea from Iceland — reinvigorating local democracy by inspiring people to stand in the council elections in May. In 2010 Iceland’s favorite stand up comedian ‘Jon Gnarr’ stood for the Reykjavik City Council elections, and to everyone’s amazement got in. The film ‘Gnarr’ tells the story of how he gathered together his friends into ‘The Best Party’ taking the local government elections by storm, and has ended up as Mayor.

On Saturday 10th March there is a free screening of the film ‘Gnarr’ at the CCA in Glasgow as an inspiration of what is possible in politics when people have had enough of the status quo and stand up for justice. Stand Up for Justice (SU4J)want people to vote in the Scottish local government elections in May, if there is no one voters want to vote for, they are encouraging folk to ask someone they trust to stand. The purpose of the event is to provide a focus for discussion and action on reinvigorating local democracy.

Encouraging people who may never before have thought about it to stand on a social justice platform. Information on how to stand will be available along with a post screening panel discussion on the realities of life as a councillor. Discussion will begin on how people can work together to offer an alternative to the current party political system of UK democracy. (SU4J) would love this to be the launch of a new Communitarian Movement. Check out their Facebook page and here is their DIY candidates advice…In the 2007 local government elections for Glasgow you needed between 800 and 3,200 first preference votes to get elected.

With the multi member wards and the single transferable vote system there is a chance for community leaders of all sorts to take a stand. Think local publican, community hall manager,allotment activist, small business owner, community nurse, event promoter, justice campaigner, gallery curator or social entrepreneur. Everything is possible! The notice of the local government election in Scotland is published from March 13th, last date to deliver nomination papers for independent candidates 4pm March 29th, its free and easy. You then have 5 weeks to get the word out and speak to your voters before they go to the ballot box

Saturday 10th March 1-4pm, Centre for Contemporary Arts, 350 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JD. Film Screening then Panel Discussion & information sharing. Free but ticketed. Call the CCA on 0141 352 4900.