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Australian Youth Vote Surges to Greens

Friday, 12 October 2001

Youth Vote Surges to Greens as Brown and Nettle Launch Pace-Setting Youth Platform

There has been a seismic shift of the youth vote to the Greens since August. Recent Morgan opinion poll results show the percentage of 18-24 year olds intending to vote Greens has zoomed to 21.3% (see attached). This group now accounts for more than 1 in 3 of the Greens supporters.

"The poll indicated huge youth support for the Greens defiant opposition to the Howard Government's adopting One Nation tactics in the Tampa asylum seekers affair," said Kerry Nettle, NSW Greens Senate candidate, as she launched the Greens youth policy platform in Sydney today.

"The fundamental pro-Green bias of young Australians comes from young people's attraction to our humanitarian and environmental policies. The environment is no 1 priority for young voters in such issues as global warming, urban pollution, woodchipping of forests and genetic engineering of foods," Senator Brown said today.

"Our polices are strongly in favour of young Australians having a stronger voice: after all they will inherit the mess the old parties have made of the world.

Key Greens policies include:

* $4B increase for public education to bring Australia to average OECD levels

* Protecting young workers from 'McWages' exploitation

* Optional voting for 16 and 17 year olds

* A commissioner and ombudsman for children and youth

* Decriminalising the personal use of cannabis

* A ban on all alcohol and tobacco adds

* Support for lesbian and gay youth, especially in rural Australia

* An end to mandatory sentencing which ensnares young indigenous people in WA and NT

* Regional Youth Advisory Committees

* A national employment strategy for youth based on local employment committees promoting 'green' jobs

* Removal of GST off public transport as well as books

"We're stoked that both Rupert Murdoch and the Business Council of Australia have overnight got right behind our breakout policy to inject $4B into education," Senator Brown said.

Further information: Ben Oquist 0419704095

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