This month gives us another opportunity to exercise our democratic privilege: casting our votes for the Provincial Council elections. Although, privilege…? It´s not how everybody sees it. The previous Provincial Council elections generated a historically low turnout, not even half of the voting public went to the polls. Perhaps not that surprising really, because again, provincial/regional subjects are scarcely represented on the electoral programmes. So people start wondering what they are actually voting for anyway.
In a wider perspective, participation in democratic processes is reason for concern and debate because the turnout at other elections is just as low. Interpretations of this phenomenon are rather diverse. Some claim that politics have moved too far away from citizens, producing the image of citizens who don´t feel involved. Or of citizens who appear to be content with the current state of affairs and cannot be bothered to cast their votes. This last image is in sharp contrast with the prevailing image projected by the media over the past few months, with pictures of yellow vest protests and climate truancy rallies ruling the headlines. And the anti establishment/protest parties popping up everywhere don´t exactly stimulate a significantly higher turnout either.
Interaction members and Board
The theory that democracy could well use an impulse seems to be rather an understatement. Since the majority of associations are faced with the same problems, this is just as true for much smaller settings. And let´s not beat around the bush, the KFPS is no exception. Only few members take the trouble to attend meetings for members. Considering the recent Stallion Inspection that cannot be due to lack of engagement. We are aware of some complaints from our Studbook rank and file that the direct influence of members on policy is considered insufficient. Pity! Because proper functioning of any association depends on the right dynamics between its members and the Board.
Entering dialogue with members
We from the KFPS are keen to play a part in shaping these dynamics. Reason enough to organise an extra tour through the country this spring to enter talks with the members about our Studbook policy for the longer term: the Long Term Policy Plan. An open dialogue on subjects that are important for members, such as inspections and breeding. Invitations for these meetings will be published in the March issue of Phryso and we hope to welcome many members at these gatherings!’