David Melding, a Conservative AM for South Wales Central, which includes Penarth, has proposed all citizens in Wales should be subject to a random – but compulsory – ‘call-up’ to require them to serve on public bodies – just as they are for jury service.
He says that – just in the way people are picked for jury service – a percentage of citizens should also be randomly selected to sit public panels including local health boards and other such bodies.
He proposes that local residents could receive a letter in the post asking them to serve for perhaps one day a month for a period of a year or more .
Melding – who is largely unknown outside the Welsh Assembly – has made it clear the notion is his own personal idea and isn’t official Conservative policy.
He says he wants to create what he calls a “citizens’ service” which would also have input into local decision-making – currently the province of elected councils. It could -he says – consist of anything from 600 people to 6,000.
He’s also proposing another change in the way Wales is governed by creating a “Second Chamber” for the Welsh Assembly which would scrutinise and amend decisions made by the current Labour-controlled Welsh Assembly
Melding has also said hopes that a ” new Youth Parliament for Wales” will start next year to succeed the so-called “Youth Assembly for Wales” which was discontinued in 2014 .