Young voices speak out

Eastern Reporter Bayswater & Bassendean - - NEWS - Kristie Lim

AS­PIR­ING young politi­cians have been ad­vo­cat­ing their views on state is­sues in Par­lia­ment this week.

Some 59 peo­ple aged be­tween 15 and 25 years are tak­ing part in YMCA WA’s an­nual Youth Par­lia­ment Camp from July 15 to to­day.

They have put to­gether Bills re­lated to is­sues in­clud­ing sup­port for ru­ral and Indige­nous women, removing lux­ury car tax on elec­tric ve­hi­cles and re­quir­ing one in three GPs to spe­cialise in youth men­tal health.

The high school and uni­ver­sity stu­dents also vis­ited Point Wal­ter Recre­ation Cen­tre dur­ing the week.

YMCA WA chief ex­ec­u­tive Ross Kyr­wood said the lead­er­ship pro­gram en­cour­aged peo­ple to be con­fi­dent about be­ing heard by the com­mu­nity.

Youth Pre­mier and Kings­ley res­i­dent Shelby Pan­nell (18), who is study­ing po­lit­i­cal sci­ence at UWA, said the camp ex­pe­ri­ence was “sur­real”.

“It is an ab­so­lute priv­i­lege to work with these amaz­ing young peo­ple and ed­u­cate them about our po­lit­i­cal sys­tem,” she said.

“You feel the weight of the world on your shoul­ders.”

Youth Op­po­si­tion Leader Hadi Rahimi (22), who is study­ing so­cial work at Curtin Uni­ver­sity, said he wanted to serve the com­mu­nity in the fu­ture.

“I am ab­so­lutely de­lighted to be part of this process and get­ting into a lead­er­ship po­si­tion and ad­vo­cat­ing, di­rect­ing and em­pow­er­ing young peo­ple,” he said. “The take­away for me is the ca­pac­ity build­ing, net­work­ing with other young peo­ple and shar­ing our ex­pe­ri­ences.”

The Bills will be pre­sented to the State Gov­ern­ment, State Op­po­si­tion, the Depart­ment of Com­mu­ni­ties and WA Gover­nor Kim Bea­z­ley.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d494572

Youth Pre­mier Shelby Pan­nell and Youth Op­po­si­tion Leader Hadi Rahimi.

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