Push to cancel council meetings during school holidays

Push to cancel council meetings during school holidays

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Cr Shen Sekhon with her children Roshan, Sameer and Reena Sekhon and Cr Amanda Spencer-Teo with two of her children AJ and Sydney Teo.

Canning’s only two women councillors Shen Sekhon and Amanda Spencer-Teo have proposed eliminating council meetings in school holidays to attract more women and younger people.

In the motion to be presented in September Cr Sekhon, a mother of three, said school holidays were the only opportunity to be with them as a family.

The timing of this proposal is significant as council election nominations open on August 31.

The motion calls for two agenda briefings and ordinary council meetings in the 2024 to be pushed back by one week.

This change would allow elected members and senior staff to better plan their family time and travel plans.

“Having been on council for over three years, it has been difficult to plan holidays with my family,” Cr Spencer-Teo said.

“During the last school holidays, my husband took two of our children to Singapore to visit his parents, while I remained in Perth with the others to fulfil my commitments to council.

“I am disappointed that local government hasn’t yet caught up with State and Federal policies of not sitting during the school holidays.

“With all the recent changes to the Local Government Act and reforms introduced by the State Government, this seems to have been forgotten”.

The proposal is aimed at increasing representation within the council and accommodating family responsibilities for all elected members and senior staff.