An eye-catching video has been produced by local teenagers to encourage young people to vote in the UK’s largest youth consultation.
The video was the brainchild of Katherine Broadhurst, 17, and Jake Pettman, 17, who are Members of Youth Parliament for Chichester & West Arun, and for East Arun, Adur & Worthing.
Last year more than 18,000 votes were made by 11 to 18 year olds from West Sussex in the national Make Your Mark consultation.
Katherine said: “It is not very often that you get to tell people what we really want from the ground up. We get affected by all the policy changes but we don’t really get to say ‘this is what I want’. This is the one time where we get to say ‘these are the top issues that young people are facing today.”
This year there are 10 topics to choose from and the ones with the most votes will get debated by Members of Youth Parliament during their sitting in the House of Commons this November (subject to a vote by MPs):
• A Curriculum to prepare us for life
• Votes at 16
• Protect LGBT+ People
• Support for Young Carers
• First Aid Education for All Young People
• Mental health
• Make the invisible visible
• Protect schools budgets from damaging cuts
• Work Experience hubs for 11-18 year olds
The West Sussex Youth Cabinet and UK Youth Parliament are supported by West Sussex County Council’s children and young people’s services.
Stephen Hillier, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: “As well as the most important issues being taken to the House of Commons for a national debate, last year we were also able to discuss them at a local event as part of Democracy Day.
“We were then able to feed these views from our local young people back to our children’s services teams and ultimately help inform the design of current and future provisions.
“So I would really encourage anyone aged 11 to 18 to take part and make a difference both locally and nationally. But voting only runs until 30 September so there is no time to waste.”
To find out more about Members of Youth Parliament in West Sussex visit www.yourspacewestsussex.co.uk.