People’s Commission on life after Covid-19 launched to lead largest ever public conversation on Britain’s future

Cross-party think tank Demos has launched a People’s Commission on Life After Covid-19, Renew Normal, to lead the largest ever public conversation on the future of the UK. Using Demos’ pioneering technology, the project aims to involve up to one million people from all walks of life in shaping society after the coronavirus crisis.

Speaking as one of the Commissioners announced today Ndidi Okezie, CEO of UK Youth said: “Even before COVID-19, young people had the least stable employment opportunities, they were lonelier than older people and more likely to be the victims of serious crime – they have been particularly hard hit by this crisis. Nonetheless we can see the incredible ways in which they have stepped up to the mark throughout. Proactively building peer led online communities, volunteering in record numbers across the country. Having sacrificed so much, their futures must now be reimagined. They must be empowered to contribute to the conversations and equipped to thrive going forward. I’m so pleased to be asked to join this Commission so we can proactively amplify a diversity of youth voices. We need to restore the sense of hope and agency that all young people are entitled to feel and that starts by ensuring they are a central part of this national conversation.”

As part of the Commission, Demos has today launched an open platform for citizens to share their stories, experiences and ideas, as the first step to understanding the impact current changes are having on people’s lives across the country. Renew Normal will work with the public throughout the project, through social listening, deliberation, participation, polling, and discussion, to understand the real life implications of all these changes.

Demos will then work with Commissioners and the public to find ways to hold on to the changes we value – from increased community connection to reduced air pollution – and heal the damage that has been caused – from unemployment to loneliness.

The survey can be found at www.renewnormal.co.uk.

The Commission brings together leading figures from sectors across society to steer the major project. The Commissioners appointed are:

  • Andrea Sutcliffe – Chief Executive of the Nursing and Midwifery Council
  • Rt Hon Charlie Falconer – Baron Falconer of Thoroton, Shadow Attorney General and former Lord Chancellor
  • Deborah Meaden – renowned businesswoman and star of BBC Two’s Dragons’ Den
  • Professor Donna Hall CBE – former Chief Executive of Wigan Council and Chair of the New Local Government Network
  • Hetan Shah – Chief Executive of The British Academy
  • Josh Hardie – Deputy Director General, Confederation of British Industry
  • Martin Lewis OBE – founder of MoneySavingExpert.com and personal finance expert
  • Mike Clancy – General Secretary of the Prospect trade union
  • Ndidi Okezie – Chief Executive Officer, UK Youth
  • Nick Timothy – author and former adviser to the Prime Minister
  • Rt Hon Nicky Morgan – Baroness Morgan of Cotes, former Secretary of State for Education, and for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
  • Stewart Wood, Lord Wood of Anfield – former senior adviser to the Leader of the Opposition
  • Vidhya Alakeson – Chief Executive of Power to Change, a National Lottery-funded network of community businesses

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