Five thousand randomly selected Milwaukie households were mailed a letter this week, giving individuals in those households a chance to be part of a unique partnership between the City of Milwaukie and Healthy Democracy. Individuals who receive the mailing can be a part of the first ever Citizens Jury in the state, in Milwaukie.
A Citizens Jury is not the kind of jury you often think of – there is no courtroom trial or judge. Instead, this program brings together groups of everyday people to study important public issues. One essential similarity with the traditional jury process is that the people who serve on these panels are randomly selected – but for this program the selection process will also create a group that is more representative of the general public in several ways, such as age, gender, political party, education, etc.
For the Milwaukie Citizens Jury, citizen panelists will consider this question: “Should Milwaukie City Council members be paid more than their current volunteer stipend? If so, how much should Council members be compensated?” Citizens Juries are professionally facilitated and follow a detailed format to ensure fairness, objectivity, and productivity.
Citizens from Milwaukie, who reply to the letter and are randomly selected from among everyone else who replies, will participate on a panel of 20 residents. They will spend several days studying this question in depth, hearing from a range of issue experts, and then providing a recommendation to the City Council.
Didn’t get the letter and/or not from Milwaukie? You can still be involved!
- Observe the Citizens Jury in person – August 10, 11, 17, 18 and 19 at Clackamas Community College’s Harmony Campus in Milwaukie.
- Watch portions of the Citizens Jury on the livestream – the link will be shared shortly before the first day of the program
- Follow the project on Healthy Democracy’s social media (Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram)