Young voices speak out
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.
Youth Premier Shelby Pannell and Youth Opposition Leader Hadi Rahimi.