A plan to lower the voting age to 16 has received the backing of Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins.
Fair.Vote is a campaign which aims to equal the voting age across the UK to 16. Launched by Association of College and the National Union of Students, it looks to bring together individuals and organisations from across the UK and politicians of all parties who believe that young adults should have a greater stake in democracy.
The Bill it’s due to have its second reading in the House of Commons later this year and has received cross-party support which shows that the political appetite for change is there. With Scotland already having a voting age of 16, and Wales potentially about to follow suit, it would be a profound shame for UK-wide elections and votes in England to be left lagging behind.
Toby said: “16 and 17-year-olds hold many responsibilities in our society, and extending the franchise would engage them in the political affairs, current events, and democratic processes that impact their lives. I would fully welcome young people in Chesterfield having the opportunity to vote at 16”
David Hughes, Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges, said: “Lowering the voting age to 16- and 17-year-olds is something that should be welcomed by politicians from across the political spectrum given the rise in young people’s participation in politics. With young people’s turnout astonishingly rising in the last General Election, it’s time to think boldly about enhancing Britain’s democracy and the future of our country. In this country you can marry at 16, you can pay taxes at 16, so what’s stopping you from having the right to vote?
Visit www.fair.vote to find out more, and download their toolkit to get involved.
Follow the conversation online @fairvote16 using the hashtags #fairvote16 and #votesat16.