The Secretariat is a ‘civil service’ department for the Assembly and will:
provide professional independent advice to Conveners to enable the Conveners to discharge their duties. This includes:
- Provision of advice on all matters relating to their responsibilities
- Diary support and logistics
- Co-ordinating correspondence
- Supporting Conveners at events
- Agreeing communications for the Citizens’ Assembly
It will also support the Citizens who will be attending the Assembly and most importantly:
The Secretariat will ensure appropriate record keeping is maintained in line with the Information Handling Protocol.
The Citizens Assembly is supported by the SNP, the Scottish Greens and by Labour. The Conservatives abstained on a vote in the Scottish Parliament and the Liberal Democrats voted against the establishment of the Assembly. Scottish Parliament Welcomes the Citizens Assembly
The Co-Conveners of the Citizens Assembly, David Martin and Kate Wimpress acknowledge that members of the Assembly will be taking on quite a task but the evidence of how well it has worked in Ireland indicates that it would be a major step forward in democratic decision making in Scotland.
“We are looking at the support that will be required for members, fully aware that this is a significant commitment we ask of them. The debate [in the Scottish Parliament] picked up on the positive experience of participants in Ireland and we are putting in place arrangements to ensure that we emulate and build on this in Scotland.”