A Notwestminster 2018 workshop from Oldham Youth Council and Dr Andy Mycock
How will we know when (or if) the time is right for votes at 16?
2018 is the 100th anniversary of the Representation of the People Act, which first gave 8.5 million women (and all men aged over 21) the opportunity to vote. There is much debate today about when we should first be able to vote, and whether lowering the voting age would have any lasting impact on voter turnout and democratic engagement.
What can we learn from our democratic heritage, what does recent research from Scotland, Austria and Norway tell us, and how much do we really know about what our young citizens think about voting?
In this workshop you’ll hear different views about votes at 16 from youth councillors, and you’ll hear about work that is under way at the University of Huddersfield to develop new research on voting age reform. You’ll be asked for your ideas about how we can improve our shared understanding of the issues, and how we can make sure that young citizens’ voices are heard.
Oldham Youth Council are one of the many UK youth councils who are keen for the issue of the voting age to be debated. There are over 1.5 million 16 and 17 year olds in the UK today who are unable to vote. Our members have a range of different views, which we’re looking forward to sharing with you.
In their current research project, the University of Huddersfield’s Dr Andrew Mycock and Professor Jonathan Tonge from the University of Liverpool are evaluating whether 16 year olds should get the vote. This will include gathering evidence from 16, 17 and 18 year olds about their attitudes to voting. Please come and find out how you can get involved.
How to get involved
Share and comment on twitter using these tags:
or you can Leave a Reply on this page.
About the workshop hosts
Oldham Youth Council
Oldham Youth Council are a group of democratically elected young people who represent the young people of Oldham. We have up to 70 members who are aged 11 – 21 and live, go to school or work in Oldham. We are involved in loads of amazing and fun activities that enable us to make a positive difference for young people in Oldham. We work with loads of different services and organisations to make sure that young people are able to shape and influence decisions that are made that affect our lives.
Dr Andrew Mycock
Reader in Politics, University of Huddersfield
Andy is Reader in Politics at the University of Huddersfield. His research interests focus on issues of youth citizenship and democratic participation. He served on the UK government’s Youth Citizenship Commission from 2008 to 2009. He recently contributed to the UK Parliament Digital Democracy Commission project, ‘Hardcopy or #Hashtag: Young people’s vision for a digital parliament’. He was the independent chair of the Kirklees Democracy Commission.
We are Generation D
Strengthening our local democracy is something that we can only do together. Democracy needs to work better for everyone, all the time, win or lose. We think that the stronger local democracy we all want and deserve could be just around the corner. And we don’t need a tardis to get there. We just need each other.
The future of local democracy starts with us. So let’s talk about our democratic generation. Let’s talk about our regeneration.
But let’s not stop at the talking.