Section One: Introduction
West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) is made up of 18 Local Authorities and three Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) working together to build a healthier, happier, better connected and more prosperous West Midlands. Led by the Mayor of the West Midlands, we are working with people, organisations and businesses to transform the region with a focus on housing, skills, transport, local industry and public sector reform. For more information regarding WMCA please visit our website.
Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) is the transport team within WMCA, striving to deliver a world-class integrated transport system which is clean, safe and affordable - connecting people and places within the West Midlands. For more information regarding TfWM please visit our website.
Section Two: What is a petition?
A petition is a formal written appeal that is typically signed by many people requesting a particular course of action. Petitions received by WMCA will be managed in line with this Protocol.
Section Three: Purpose and Scope
WMCA is committed to engaging with citizens, getting closer to communities and improving services. We welcome petitions as one way in which people can let us know their concerns or ideas. Petitions can be used to communicate an objection, service complaint or request on behalf of a group of people. They can deliver a positive change. For example, residents or service users may request new facilities and in doing so become more involved in securing benefits for their communities.
The purpose of WMCA’s Petitions Protocol is to set out the agreed approach for investigating a petition. It covers the complete work of WMCA including TfWM. Petitions about products and services WMCA provides will be considered in line with this Petitions Protocol unless otherwise stated. This may include services provided by third parties on our behalf.
Submitting a petition, will not affect an individual’s right to receive or use products or services provided by WMCA.
Section Four: What to include in a petition
For the purpose of correspondence relating to a petition, WMCA will communicate with the Lead Petitioner. The Lead Petitioner is usually the person that sends the petition to WMCA, but if this is unknown, the Lead Petitioner will be taken to be the first signatory on the petition document itself.
To help WMCA with the investigation we ask the Lead Petitioner to include:
- Name and contact details including postal address and/or email address; and
- Any supporting information or documentation
Section Five: What WMCA can consider
WMCA can investigate petitions relating to our work and the products and services that we deliver. Before sending a petition to WMCA we ask the Lead Petitioner to check they are raising their petition with the correct organisation. WMCA has not replaced the role of Local Authorities which remain responsible for delivering the majority of public services within local communities. The Local Authority is the organisation to which citizens pay their Council Tax. Bus, Metro and rail services are delivered by private operators in the West Midlands.
Petitions will be considered where the:
- Responsibility falls within WMCA’s remit (see Appendix A);
- Lead Petitioner and signatories live, work or study within the West Midlands;
- Relevant information is provided, as outlined in Section Four of this Protocol; and
- Petition clearly states the objective/reason(s) for the petition and the action that is requested by WMCA.
Petitions will not be considered where:
- They are submitted in response to a specific consultation exercise in which case they will be considered as part of the consultation activity;
- The subject has already been considered by WMCA within the previous 12 months (with the exception of any material changes which may have affected a different outcome to the original petition);
- They are vexatious, abusive or otherwise inappropriate;
If you are not sure whether your petition should come to WMCA, please refer to the contact details in Section Seven.
Section Six: Petitions relating to Third Parties
If a petition relates to a third party, in some cases it may be possible for WMCA to work with the third party to jointly investigate it. This may involve sharing information about the petition, petitioners and Lead Petitioner with the third party supplier. Please see our Privacy Statement for further information on how we handle your personal data.
If a petition is more suited for consideration by the third party under their own procedure, WMCA will pass on the details directly to the third party and let the Lead Petitioner know we have done this.
Section Seven: How to submit a petition
A petition can be submitted by:
Post: Customer Relations, 16 Summer Lane, Birmingham, B19 3SD
If a Lead Petitioner needs to talk to us about their petition they can contact us by:
Phone: 0345 303 6760*
*Telephone lines are open from 0800 to 1800 Monday to Friday (except Wednesday 1000 to 1800) and from 0900 to 1300 on Saturdays. We are closed on Sundays and Bank Holidays.
Section Eight: Our Petitions Process
Our Petitions Process is explained below.
|Step 1||We will acknowledge receipt of a petition by writing to the Lead Petitioner. An investigation will be carried out which will involve collecting information, exploring options available and in some cases, a site visit. If we need to discuss the petition we will contact the Lead Petitioner.|
|Step 2||The petition and the findings of the investigation will be considered by a Petitions Panel. The panel will be formed of officers with appropriate specialist knowledge and include a nominated Head of Service and/or Director. The Petitions Panel will make a decision based on the facts presented from the petition itself and the investigation that was carried out.|
|Step 3||If a petition has 250 or more signatories, the Petitions Panel will recommend its decision for approval by the appropriate Committee of elected Members.*
We will let the Lead Petitioner know the time and date of the public meeting at which the petition will be considered. The Lead Petitioner may attend this meeting and speak about the petition. Only the Lead Petitioner will be permitted to address the committee and will be required to confirm their attendance in advance of the meeting.
Our Petitions Protocol provides a route through which groups of people can raise collective requests and issues with WMCA. It is intended to provide a fair and transparent framework for matters to be considered and resolved. However, considering a petition can be a lengthy process depending on the timetable of the appropriate Committee.
For this reason, we often try to respond to Petitioners’ requests without the formality and time delay of waiting to attend Committee meetings.
* WMCA’s Monitoring Officer will determine the appropriate Committee to formally consider the recommendations of WMCA’s Petitions Panel.
Section Nine: Outcome
For petitions with less than 250 signatories, WMCA will respond to the Lead Petitioner directly within 30 calendar days of receiving it.
For petitions with more than 250 signatories, WMCA will respond to the Lead Petitioner directly within 60 calendar days of receiving it.
If at any stage the petition needs more time than expected to investigate, we will contact the Lead Petitioner to let them know.
There is no formal right of appeal. If a Lead Petitioner is unhappy with the outcome or the way in which WMCA has handled their petition they can refer to our Complaints Handling Procedure. For more information regarding WMCA’s Complaints Handling Procedure please visit our website.
Request a copy
To request a copy of this document in a format better suited to your needs please contact us on 0345 303 6760*
Or you can download a copy of this as a PDF here.