Weir urges youth to make their mark

Mike Weir MP with fellow MPs Tasmina Ahmed Sheikh and Ian Blackford at the launch

Mike Weir MP with fellow MPs Tasmina Ahmed Sheikh and Ian Blackford at the launch

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Have your say

A campaign by the Youth Parliament encouraging young people to take part in its annual ballot has been backed by Angus MP Mike Weir.

‘Make Your Mark’ appeals to 11 to 18 year olds in the UK to have their say in the annual ballot.

The campaign will see members and volunteer campaigners across the country, inviting young people in schools and youth clubs to take this opportunity to have their say to government and society.

The ballot will contain 10 policies voted for by Members of Youth Parliament including poverty, mental health, curriculum, climate change and votes at 16 and have reflected their election pledges in local elections across the UK.

The aim of the exercise is to bring these issues to the attention of Government Ministers, including the Minister for Civil Society / and Youth Policy who will attend and reply on behalf of the Government.

The Commons debate will be chaired by The Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons, who recently opened the UK Youth Parliament in Exeter at its Annual Sitting (which meets alternately outside London).

Young members will then walk through the division lobbies to vote on what should be become their priority campaigns for 2015/16.

Mr Weir said: “This allows young people to give a clear voice to the issues which concern them.

“Many of these issues, such as the Living Wage and votes for 16 and 17 year olds are already being pioneered in Scotland.

James Cathcart, Chief Executive of the British Youth Council, which manages the UK Youth Parliament and the campaign added: “This is the biggest youth ballot in the UK and Europe – when over a million are expected to ask the Government to listen to their concerns.

“Young people do care, are active, want change – and have something to say. Lets listen.

“It’s great that nearly 100 MPs are supporting this launch from across parties. We ask that they will also take the results seriously and debate the issues in Parliament.”

Young people can take part in the consultation at www.ukyouthparliament.org.uk/makeyourmark.