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Council Applauds ‘Youth Action’

“The youth of a nation are the trustees of posterity,” and Auckland City Council’s Community Development Committee has endorsed the city’s young people by unanimously passing the new ‘Youth Action’ policy.

Described as an enlightened move, the Committee resolved that the policy be researched and drafted by youth for youth. Auckland City Council has commissioned three youth representatives for this purpose and the policy reflects their boundless energy and the culmination of a year’s hard work.

The purpose of developing a policy directly relating to youth and youth issues signals the Council’s ongoing commitment to “First Call for Children” action plan from the 1990 United Nations World Summit for Children. Councillor Penny Sefuiva, chairperson of the Community Development Committee says,” I agree with Disraeli when he said “that almost everything that is great has been done by youth,” because I just see so much potential in the youth of this City.”

‘Youth Action’ provides a mandate for addressing issues facing young people today while ensuring that youth have a voice within Council and the city. “We want to be able to meet the needs of the city’s young people,” says Penny Sefuiva. “We also see it as a way to encourage and involve other agencies and organisations to contribute and help develop the extensive resource that our youth offer us.”
The policy specifically targets the 12 to 25 years age range. Up to 75,000 young people reside in Auckland City, with many more coming in for work and study. To achieve the broadest coverage and input possible the researchers, supported by Community Planning and Recreation and Community Services Group, consulted extensively through forums, workshops, focus groups, school visits and the Auckland City Youth Council.

The main points identified by youth that affect them in the City are:

 Personal safety.
 Being able to move around the City safely.
 Access to public transport and being able to get where they want to go.
 Lack of things to do for young people.
 Freedom to express themselves culturally and artistically.
 That the Council respects, values and listens to them.
 That the City is committed to delivering services specific to youth.

Some exciting design ideas are already underway with Youth Action cartoon characters being developed, a poster competition using the characters to advertise the policy and a design for the document to make it appealing to young people. A launch of the youth policy is planned for Saturday September 23 at the end of Youth Awareness Week.

For further information
Please Contact:
Penny Sefuiva
Community Development Committee
Tel: 846 0861

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