Parliamentary and Electoral Affairs Minister Doug Shave will officially open the 1999 Western Australian YMCA Youth Parliament this morning.
Three dozen young people from Perth and around the State are taking part in this year’s youth parliament and will debate and vote on several important youth related issues.
The Youth Parliament is held in Parliament House and closely follows the proceedings and activities of the real Parliament.
“This is the fifth annual Youth Parliament to be held,” Mr Shave said.
“They are designed to give young people a good understanding of the way in which our system of Government works.
“Equally importantly, they are an opportunity for MPs to hear the views of young Western Australians."
Issues to be debated relate to drug use, nuclear free zones, health services in rural and remote areas, the homeless and motor driver training.
Mr Shave said the value of the Youth Parliaments was recognised by the Government’s annual grant of $20,000 to assist in holding them.
“I don’t think there has ever been a time when young people have been so aware, so knowledgeable, or so articulate in expressing their opinions on issues,” Mr Shave said.
“You are changing the old cry of ‘the Government should do something about it’ to ‘what can we do about it,’” Mr Shave told the young parliamentarians.
The Youth Parliament will sit for three days and a copy of the Hansard of its proceedings will be given to all MPs.
Media contact: John Clune 9213 6500