UK Youth Parliament will soon launch their new manifesto following an intense debate at their Annual Conference in Nottingham. Over the weekend over 200 Members of Youth Parliament from across the UK came to together to debate new policies and campaigns for the year ahead.
Members of Youth Parliament debated and voted on the issues during the UK Youth Parliament’s Annual Conference which took place at the University of Nottingham. During the debates Members of Youth Parliament discussed putting an end to knife crime, tackling homelessness, welcoming refugees, supporting youth services, mental health in school, tackling hate crime and the importance of ensuring sexual orientation and gender identity in schools.
During the three day conference, Members of Youth Parliament marked the Vote 100 campaign celebrating 100 years since some women were given the right to vote in elections. Representatives were addressed by Joy Warmington, CEO of brap, an expert in leadership development and coaching. Alison Kriel, CEO of the AMAYA Trust addressed in the closing ceremony sharing her personal experiences of having to persevere growing up and in the workplace.
John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons, returned to the Annual Conference to address Members of Youth Parliament ahead of the UK Youth Parliament’s Sitting in the House of Commons which will take place in November following this year’s Make Your Mark campaign.
Brahmpreet Gulati, Procedures Groups representative for the East Midlands, the group which coordinate the event said: “This year UK Youth Parliament marked 100 years since some women were given the vote. An important milestone in the political calendar, and one we marked throughout this year’s conference. Equality has not yet fully been achieved but we as the next generation must continue on this journey.
During the conference Members of Youth Parliament debated how we could better support the LGBT+ community, sexism, hate crime and a whole host of issues facing young people in the UK. In our new manifesto, we’re calling on decision-makers to address the issues that young people are passionate about.”
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This weekend over 250 Members of Youth Parliament from across the UK met in Liverpool for the UK Youth Parliament’s 17th Annual Sitting to debate new policies and campaigns for the year ahead. The sitting forms yet another example of young people pushing forward their vision for a better country and a better world. There are no political parties or adversarial opposition, but everyone has an independent vote and the emphasis is on persuasion, consensus and researched arguments.
The three-day residential which took place at Liverpool Hope University was opened by Vimla Appadoo who told the sitting about her experiences volunteering with the Holocaust Educational Trust. John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons, who has spoken at every Annual Sitting since his first election, also addressed the sitting of Members of Youth Parliament. The Speaker gave an impassioned speech about the importance of young people having a voice. To close the sitting, Margaret Aspinall CBE, Chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group told her story and gave an inspirational speech about the importance of the perseverance and fighting for injustices.
During the weekend issues such as support for young carers, improving healthcare services, supporting EU national’s post-Brexit and protecting the LGBT+ community all gained momentum following debates on new policy for the manifesto.
Connor Hill, Procedures Group representative for West Midlands, who helped to coordinate the event, said “The Annual Sitting is a key part of the calendar year for Members of Youth Parliament and it’s been fantastic to see the raw passion of the members during the debates. Following this weekend’s event, MYPs will be armed with plenty of knowledge and skills to carry on pursuing their roles back in their local authority to continue making sure that young people are represented on an effective scale both locally and nationally. It is programmes like this that enable young people to have an effective voice towards government regarding matters that concern young people.”
Luke Thornton, Trustee of the British Youth Council said “It was an absolute pleasure to visit the UK Youth Parliament’s Annual Sitting. It really was great to see Members of Youth Parliament from different parts of the UK talking passionately about the issues they care about and the ways in which they want to address those issues. This is just one example of yet more young people giving up time to take part in social action”
Members of Youth Parliament were busy preparing for UK Youth Parliament annual Make Your Mark campaign which commences on Saturday 2nd July 2017. Make Your Mark gives young people aged 11 to 18 the chance to tell UK Youth Parliament which issues they believe should be a priority.