Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Young NZers call for parties to act on children's rights

UNICEF NZ (UN Children’s Fund)

Media Release

14 July 2014

Young New Zealanders call for political parties to take action on children’s rights

Fifty young people (aged 15-18 years) who attended the UNICEF NZ Youth Congress in Christchurch at the weekend, have called on political parties to address six priority issues including youth unemployment, poverty and mental health.

The theme of this year’s congress was ‘Shape Your World’, with delegates learning about ways to participate in their communities and in politics to create the world they want. The Congress developed a short political communiqué (included below) for political parties and presented it to the MP for Christchurch Central, Hon Nicky Wagner and the MP for Wigram, Megan Woods. The recommendations identified by the young people are:

1. Create and support avenues for effective child and youth participation in decision-making (Article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child)

2. Implement child rights education as an integral strand in the school curriculum

3. Ensure adequate funding for schools and encourage the development of schools as focal points or community hubs

4. Take immediate action to build the mental health of young New Zealanders

5. Create a more equal society and improve the standard of living of children and families living in poverty

6. Youth unemployment as an issue requiring priority action

UNICEF NZ National Advocacy manager, Deborah Morris-Travers said, “When the young people started talking about the issues that matter to them there was a high level of consensus about priorities for action. They understand that all New Zealanders have a responsibility to take positive action for children but also identified the need for bold political leadership to ensure equitable investment in children and youth.”

The communiqué acknowledges current Government and community efforts to improve the lives of children and youth, but reminds the Government of its responsibility to implement the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and challenges all political parties to do more for children and youth.

The Congress identified youth unemployment as an urgent priority and expressed support for continuing education. Many of the delegates are in their final years of school, or at university, and they are concerned that young people are disproportionately affected by unemployment.

“It was also clear from the discussions that delegates are concerned about the large proportion of Kiwi kids who are living in poverty, going without the basic things needed for health and education. They called for more equality and a standard of living that enables every child to participate in our society and economy.

“Another big concern for delegates was youth mental health. The Congress called for immediate action to build and support the mental health of young New Zealanders by ensuring the best possible childhoods and acknowledging children and youth as valued members of our society. The delegates talked about the need for good quality mental health services and the need for professionals to be well trained to respond to trauma in children and youth,” Ms Morris-Travers added.

Other recommendations referred to the need for better child and youth participation in decision-making; child rights and citizenship education; and for schools to serve as community hubs in the provision of health and other social services.

“UNICEF NZ is sending the communiqué to all political parties today, requesting a formal response so that we can share the parties’ responses with the youth delegates. We hope all parties will hear what these young people have to say and incorporate those views into their policy,” concluded Ms Morris-Travers.

#ShapeYourWorld

-ends-

Notes to editors

17 year old Brad Olsen, a UNICEF NZ Youth Ambassador, is available to speak with media via Laura Gibbons at UNICEF NZ (contact details below).


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Budget

It may seem like Oliver to be so bold as to ask the Finance Minister for more gruel – but what the Dickens, Steven Joyce… is this Budget really as good as it gets?

Supposedly, the public was going to receive significant rewards – an election year lolly scramble no less – for the eight years of belt tightening that they’ve endured, and for the rundown of essential public services.

Well, what Budget 2017 delivered instead in Education and in Health were allocations barely sufficient to maintain the current levels of service delivery More>>

Scoop Full Coverage: of Budget Announcements & Reaction
Latest: Scoop Search

 
 

Auditor-General Stands Down For Investigation: Gordon Campbell On (Not) Taking Responsibility

So Martin Matthews, our current Auditor-General wishes he could have detected “earlier” the fraud that occurred on his watch at the Ministry of Transport. Hmmm. But he could have detected it earlier, surely? That’s the point. More>>

ALSO:

NGOs Pleased: Govt To Halt Collection Of Client Data

Brenda Pilott, the chair of ComVoices and national manager of Social Service Providers Aotearoa, congratulates the government on its decision to call a halt to the collection of individual client data until the concerns of not-for-profit service providers have been worked through. More>>

ALSO:

Gosh: Blasphemy Law Repeal Struck Down

Chris Hipkins, the MP who tabled a Supplementary Order Paper to add our Blasphemy Law to the Statutes Repeal Bill, said this was a "sad day for freedom of speech, tolerance, and leadership". More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Navy’s Dealings With Fat Leonard, And Twin Peaks

At an official level, our “she’ll be right” attitude routinely spills over into a keen resentment of anyone who suggests the outcomes may be less than satisfactory… The Navy has now gone one step beyond. It won’t even ask itself whether it did a good job. More>>

ALSO:

NZDF: Fifth Rotation Of Troops Heads To Iraq

The fifth rotation of New Zealand Defence Force troops left today for a six-month mission training Iraqi soldiers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Demonising Of Iran

Will New Zealand still be willing to pursue its recent trade overtures to Iran, now that US President Donald Trump has used his speech in Riyadh to single out Iran as the main source of terrorism and instability in the Middle East? More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 

Opening The Election Supporters

 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election