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  • Writer's picture2022 Global Voices Fellow

Engaging Australia’s youth in democracy, policy, and decision-making processes

By Narayan Khanal, Global Voices National Scholar, Y20, 2022

Narayan is a Global Voices National Scholar studying a Doctor of Medicine at the University of Wollongong. His policy paper focuses on Engaging Australia’s youth in democracy, policy, and decision-making processes.

Executive Summary

Despite Australia’s large youth population, young people’s ability to be part of decision-making processes and influence policy landscape remains low. It is important that young people are engaged in civic debates and part of the solution for emerging challenges through leadership and policy making experience, as well as civic engagement, to future proof Australia’s policies and leadership. This would not only help develop young people’s potential, but also enhance democracy and build trust amongst young people in democratic processes. This policy paper aims to provide recommendations to help broaden Australia’s engagement with young people in policy and decision-making processes. It recommends establishment of a federally funded national youth advisory body under the minister for youth and introduction of an electoral amendments bill to lower Australia’s voting age to 16 to enhance youth engagement in politics.

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