Well, that might be some people’s idea of a holiday but it’s certainly not how things have been for SYP since the Sitting. We’ve had MSYPs out across Scotland at events, the campaigns team have been working with the Conveners Group to put together our new campaign –which is all going to be incredibly exciting. We’ve got We-CTV starting again in September, and at the end of the month the SYP Elections Commission will be releasing their report. So it’s all go.
However, I’m sure most MSYPs will agree with me the most important developments have been over Votes at 16. As you will know, Votes at 16 is a core belief of the Scottish Youth Parliament. As an organisation who believe young people deserve to be heard, it is central to all our campaigning for 16 and 17-year-olds, who can work, marry, and join the army, to also be allowed to choose the politicians in charge of these areas. We don’t really think the opposing arguments are credible.
To help make this happen, SYP have been working with NUS Scotland to try and encourage both the Scottish and UK Governments to work together to make votes at 16 happen for the referendum on Scotland’s constitutional future.
The key activity has been Robin Parker, NUS Scotland President, and myself sending a letter to Michael Moore MP, Secretary of State for Scotland, and Bruce Crawford, Cabinet Secretary for Parliamentary Business and Government Strategy, asking them to work together to make this a reality. With this in mind we are very encouraged to hear the UK Government may be prepared to consider allowing this measure (insert link). Furthermore we have heard from the Scottish Government they are keen to meet with us to have our input into the next stage. So it seems Scotland’s leaders are at least listening to us on this issue.
But it’s crucial we keep involved. Sadly Ross Greer MSYPs epetition has now expired; so what we have done is set up a brand new petition calling for votes at 16, both for the referendum but also for all future elections as well – you can sign the petition at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/votesat16-17/ . As for the rest of the campaign – I’ll keep you posted on all the developments – you can read all our news releases on the blog!
Believe it or not we are only seven weeks away from our next sitting. North Lanarkshire Council are kindly hosting us on the 27th and 28th October – it should be epic. As always though, what makes the sitting is not the organisation or the location, but what we as MSYPs put into it. Therefore if anyone has a Member’s Motion they would like to have debated at the Sitting could they get in touch with Kate (firstname.lastname@example.org) by Friday 7th September by 5pm. If you would like more information then please click here: http://tinyurl.com/cn6n3pd
Children and Young People’s Bill
The Scottish Government are considering whether they should combine all the rights, duties and guidance affecting young people in Scotland into one law – the Children and Young People Bill. It’s vital that young people’s views are listened to when shaping this so please give us 10 minutes of your time to take part in this quick survey and we’ll make sure the Government listen!. You’ll be entered into a prize draw for a £50 Amazon voucher – what are you waiting for?!?