Politicians told to stop discriminating against young people

Zee tanya thomas thomas jim sweeney aaronweb

Pictured (left to right) Zee, LGBT Youth Scotland, aged 17 from Galashiels; Tanya Thomson, Scottish Borders Council, aged 16 from Hawick; Thomas McEachan MSYP, Scottish Youth Parliament, aged 19 from Glasgow; Thomas Mair, Young Scot, aged 21 from Coatbridge; Jim Sweeney, chief executive, YouthLink Scotland; Aaron Irving, Boys’ Brigade Scotland, aged 15 from Livingston 

Young people want equal wages, the right to vote at 16 and access to wifi in their communities says the Youthlink Scotland manifesto 

Susan Smith's photo

31st May 2017 by Susan Smith 0 Comments

The UK government should stop discriminating against young people and create a minimum wage that is equal for everyone.

This is one of the main calls in the manifesto for Scotland’s national youth work agency YouthLink Scotland.

The body, which represents organisations working with over 300,000 young people, also called for the voting age to be lowered to 16 across the whole country.

YouthLink Scotland sought the views of its membership to inform the development of its manifestos from 2015-18.

It is also calling for politicians to support a right for all young people to be able to access high-quality youth work and to protect EU youth programme cash.

Between 2009 and 2016 Scotland received €2.2 million (£1.9m) in funding for youth organisations.

Chief executive of YouthLink Scotland, Jim Sweeney, told Westminster candidates: “As politicians you seek a society where all young people have equality of opportunity. Youth work is very often the catalyst which gives young people the learning and skills which helps level the playing field between those who have and those who have not.

“Since the last Westminster election in 2015, we would have expected to see at least some movement on some of our key asks. Instead money is being poured into quick fix programmes at the expense of building a sustainable youth work sector across the UK.”

Other demands include access to free wifi in communities so that young people are able to develop strong digital skills.

Sweeney added: “The digital offer must be improved for our young people, many of whom cannot access wifi for free. We still have inequality within the National Minimum Wage and 16 and 17 year olds continue to be denied the vote at UK level.”

The manifesto was specially designed by the award winning cartoonist Frank Boyle.

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