CATCH (Citizens at City Hall) is a volunteer community group that encourages civic participation in Hamilton. Our members attend and report on meetings of city councillors and other City committees, and carry out related research and activities.
We issue regular news updates to our email list using recordings and transcripts of meetings, staff reports and/or other public documents to highlight information about Hamilton civic affairs that is not generally available in the mass media.
- Join our email list and receive the free CATCH news updates. Just send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Come to a committee or council meeting and talk to the CATCH volunteer who is monitoring the meeting. We are usually located on the west side of the Council Chambers, at the end of the media counter that is closest to the door. Just ask if the person there is with CATCH and introduce yourself. You can watch the meeting just like any other citizen or you may be able to assist the CATCH monitor, and become more familiar with what she/he does.
- You can become a CATCH monitor and attend and record meetings, including various committees. Many CATCH volunteers focus on one particular committee (they usually meet once or twice a month at a regular time).
- We need people to transcribe tapes. This is a task that can be easily taken up by someone who has difficulty attending meetings, or wants to limit their involvement to a few hours at a time. You need a computer. The required software is available for download.
- You can invite a CATCH member to talk to your group or organization.
- We also do research related to City issues, including related activities of municipal governments in other parts of Ontario. Let us know if you'd like to work on this aspect of our work, or just forward information you think might be of interest.
"The more freely information flows, the stronger a society becomes. Citizens can hold their own government accountable. They can begin to think for themselves. That generates new ideas and encourages creativity." - Barack Obama 2009