Members of Youth Parliament for Walsall Renée and Mariam at the House of Commons.
Recently, as a part of my serving role, I got given the opportunity to debate in the House of Commons. When first hearing about the debate, I was extremely excited and felt that this was a once in a life time opportunity. I had never done anything like this before and was really happy.
Youth of Walsall counting the votes at October's meeting.
The House of Commons debate took part after a survey called Make Your Mark which is when young people get the opportunity to vote for one out of ten issues that they believed were important to them. The top five voted issues were to be debated in the House of Commons. For Make Your Mark, I contacted my school and got them involved with us receiving a total of approximately 700 ballots. My co-member of Youth Parliament and I worked together to ensure we could get as many schools in Walsall to participate. The overall voting total was approximately 3,000 votes.
When the House of Commons debate arrived, I was very nervous but excited at the same time. There were two debating sessions; one in the morning then lunch and then one in the afternoon. In the first session, we debated about Protecting LGBTQ+, Work Experience Hubs and Votes at 16. In the second session, we debated about A Curriculum for Life and Transport.
Unfortunately, I did not secure the opportunity to speak but had planned to talk about A Curriculum for Life. This was because this was one of the top issues voted in Walsall and I felt that it was my responsibility to get the voice of the youth of Walsall out there. Overall, the House of Commons was an amazing experience which I would love to do again.
As an MYP, I next year hope to campaign for the two campaigns that got voted through. Those were A Curriculum for Life and Votes at 16. I plan to do what I can locally (including speaking to schools and the council) to ensure that the youth get what they deserve.
Find out about recent successes of Walsall MYP's by visiting the UK Youth Parliament section on our website. You can also visit the UK Youth Parliament website to learn more about the debate and past debates by clicking here.