Over 300 young representatives from the UK Youth Parliament sat in the chamber to debate what should be their national campaign for 2012.
65,000 young people from across the UK had previously voted in a record breaking ballot to pick the five topics to be debated.
The five campaigns debated by Members of the UK Youth Parliament were…
– Make Public Transport Cheaper, Better and Accessible for All
– No to Tuition Fees, Yes to Graduate Tax
– Zero Tolerance towards Bullying in Schools
– End Child Poverty
– A Greener Future for Britain
Following the debate, Members of the UK Youth Parliament voted for the top campaign and the winner was ‘Make Public Transport Cheaper, Better and Accessible for All‘.
The debate was chaired by the Speaker, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, following opening remarks from the Leader of the House, Rt Hon Sir George Young MP, and Shadow Leader Maria Eagle MP. Members of the UK Youth Parliament also meet the Childrens Minister Tim Loughton MP and the Leader of the Opposition, Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP.
Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Opposition visited the event and commented on votes at 16: “I think it’s incredibly important that the voice of young people is heard in our politics and the Youth Parliament sitting in the House of Commons is on symbolic way of that happening at least once a year and I’m a great supporter of this happening and I have been ever since I was elected to Parliament. I think we’ve got to find other ways as well of hearing young people in our politics; I’m in favour of votes at 16 for example because I think it will bring young people – you can get married, join the army – you deserve having a voice and a vote in our politics“.
The event marked the finale of Parliament Week – a new annual national awareness week which aims to build greater awareness, understanding and engagement with parliamentary democracy in the UK.