Youth Parliament speaks out in disappointment over today's House Of Commons vote concerning votes at 16.

08 December 2015

Scottish Youth Parliament Press Office

Youth Parliament speaks out in disappointment over todays House of Commons vote concerning Votes at 16.

The Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP) has campaigned extensively in favour of 16 and 17 year-olds being given a vote in all UK elections.  Today the House of Commons withdrew an amendment, to the EU Referendum Bill, that would have allowed 16 and 17 year olds to cast a vote in the, yet unscheduled, EU membership referendum.

The Scottish Youth Parliament views this as an extremely disappointing day for young people across the entire United Kingdom, and a missed opportunity for our Members of Parliament to uphold the rights of young people.  SYP will continue to campaign for Votes at 16 for all UK elections.

Chair of the Scottish Youth Parliament, Jordan Linden MSYP said:

“The right for young people to have their say on the issues that affect them is a core principle of the Scottish Youth Parliament. Today this right was not upheld, and 16 and 17 year-olds have been robbed of the opportunity to cast a vote on an issue that will affect their entire lives.

“At the Scottish Youth Parliament, we have campaigned tirelessly to win the right to vote for 16 and 17 year olds since our organisation began in 1999.  In the Scottish Referendum last year, we saw first-hand the passion of young people, as they participated at the ballot box, by casting their vote to have their say in the future of their country.  Today was a defeat, but we will not quit campaigning.

“We will continue to call for a change in the voting age for all UK elections, but we also are calling for a change of mentality.  We want to live in a world that recognises that our voices matter, not just here in Scotland, but across the United Kingdom – our voices must be heard.”