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A petition is a formal document appealing to the council for a right or benefit, usually signed by a large number of people known as signatories. A petition is a popular way for residents to get their views heard.

Any document can be considered as a petition even if it is signed by a few people. A letter signed by more than one person from separate addresses can also be treated as a petition.

We are committed to letting our residents make a difference to the way their borough is run.

Please submit your petition to the Feedback Team.

Petition rules Toggle accordion

All petitions must meet our standards, they are:

  • a statement about the petition including what action the petitioners wish the council to take
  • the name and address of each person that has signed the petition
  • a signature or email address (if the petition is online) of the person who started the petition along with name, address and contact details

Signing the petition

There can only be one signature per person, including their full name and address. Each signatory must live within Barking or Dagenham.

Please note that we may check the names and addresses of signatories using our own records. Any names that do not match the above criteria will be removed. This may change the total number of signatories.

Petitions we can’t deal with

There are some petitions that we will not be able to accept.

They include petitions that are:

  • the responsibility of a council quasi-judicial board
  • an issue that is subject to a formal statutory process
  • submitted by a council employee
  • the same as a petition that we have already received or something that has already been debated at a public meeting
  • about the day to day operation of a school
  • outside of the council’s direct control
  • about a contract held by the council
  • about something that is the subject of legal proceedings or dispute
  • about an individual or body that may have the right to compensation or appeal
  • considered vexatious or derogatory, or contrary to any code, rule or legal requirement

Submitting your petition Toggle accordion

Petitions can be submitted to us in three formats:

  • on paper
  • using our online e-petitioning facility
  • using an external online petitioning facility, such as Facebook or Twitter

You can also hand petitions into Barking Town Hall in person.

Online e-petitions Toggle accordion

Use our consultation portal to create and submit petitions.

To create an e-petition, you will need to:

  • give your name, postal address and email address
  • decide how long your petition will be open for people to sign up to 12 months)

Publishing your e-petition

When you create your e-petition, we will check it is suitable before we publish it online. If we cannot publish your petition, we will contact you to explain why. You will be able to change and resubmit your petition if you wish.

When your e-petition closes, we will contact you.

Signing an e-petition

When you sign an e-petition, we will ask you to provide:

  • your name
  • your postcode
  • an email address

We will send an email to the address you provided with a link to confirm your email address. We’ll then add your signature to the petition.

How we will deal with your petition Toggle accordion

A council officer will contact you within 10 working days to let you know what we intend to do.

If your petition is valid and meets our criteria you will receive a formal response.

The petition will also be published on our website with personal details such as names and addresses removed.

If you are the lead petition your contact details will be removed.

Petitions that reach 1500 valid signatures will trigger a debate at a public Council meeting.

Formal debates Toggle accordion

If your petition is accepted and has the required amount of signatures this will start a formal debate.

Your petition will then be allocated to one of our scrutiny committees (Overview and Scrutiny or Health Scrutiny Committees).

Formal debate process

  1. An officer will write to you 10 working days before the scrutiny committee meeting
  2. If confidential information is to be discussed the reason why will be made public
  3. You may be asked for more detail about your petition. A meeting may also be held to try and reach an agreement before the debate
  4. You or a representative will need to attend the scrutiny committee. If no-one attends, the petition can be dismissed with no further action
  5. You will need to talk about your petition and give any supporting evidence. The evidence will be used in the debate
  6. A relevant council officer will then give their evidence. The Chair may allow you time to question the officer and the officer may be able to question you
  7. The Chair will summarise the debate before closing the debate

The scrutiny committee will review all evidence and may carry out additional research. They will then decide whether to support or reject your petition.

The decision will be made within six weeks.

You will be informed in writing of the committee’s decision as soon as it is made.

If your petition is supported, the committee will recommend the course of action that the council should take.

Right to appeal Toggle accordion

The select committee’s decision is final and there is no right of appeal.

Chief Executive (Petitions)

Feedback Team. Barking Town Hall, 1 Town Square, Barking IG11 7LU