The next generation of political leaders is getting ready to take over Parliament.
The week-long Youth Parliament program, which kicked off on Sunday, brings together young people from across Tasmania to debate the key issues facing the state.
Fifty young people, in years 10, 11, and 12, have been working together to draft legislation and prepare policies, outlining the issues and problems in society that matter to them and proposing their own solutions.
The students will then bring their bills to Hobart’s Parliament House, and their passed legislation will be presented to Tasmanian politicians.
Launceston student Talleyn Burch, who also did the program last year, encouraged other young people to take part in the event in the future.
“Our bill this year is on energy security and its ultimate aim, through a range of subsidies and things like that, is to make Tasmania energy independent,” Talleyn said.
We bring together young people who are going to make an impact.Tasmanian Youth Government Association logistics officer Amber Scott
“There’s mostly a focus on renewable things, so we’ve got a lot of solar power involved and also some expansions to hydro.
“On our team we have some diverse opinions on how the world should be run so getting a compromise between those different views and actually seeing those work together in different ways was really nice.”
Tasmanian Youth Government Association logistics officer Amber Scott said the program was not just about educating students on legislation, but also about building a community of young people.
“It’s not just about the educational side, it’s about bringing together young people to learn and engage with each other,” Ms Scott said.
“Coming into a program like this, it’s very eye-opening that there are a lot of opportunities out there.
“We bring together young people who are going to make an impact and their voices are heard through this avenue – we bring the students together to make some noise.”
The student debates will be held in Parliament House in Hobart throughout the week.