Working with communities
Sometimes the most immediate and far-reaching way of engaging with people is through social media. Asking a question on Facebook or Twitter is a fast way of gathering information and opinions.
Rules and awareness
Remember there are pitfalls associated with using social media, what you say, if you can be identified as a councillor, even when “off duty”, will be open to very wide scrutiny and all the requirements of your Code of Conduct will apply. Make sure that you are aware of your council’s guidance and member protocols on the use of social media. Set out clear rules for people who get in touch with you via social media. You may want to consider publicising these on your page.
It is important that you keep yourself safe on social media. Online bullying and harassment can be a problem. No one should have to experience this. If it happens to you speak to your democratic services officers. In some cases, it may be appropriate to involve the police. More advice on dealing with online abuse can be found here.