Say hello to the Isle of Wight’s new Member of Youth Parliament

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Did you know the Island has a Youth MP?

If you didn’t, then you’re not alone — but our latest Member of Youth Parliament is set to ensure young people on the Island are no longer ignored.

After posting a campaign video to YouTube, Joe Davies beat four other candidates in the online election.

Yet despite his ‘unhealthy obsession with politics’, the 17 year old admitted he’d never previously heard of the Youth Parliament.

“I think that the last MYP did some great things for the Island, but he wasn’t very visible. I want people to know who I am, so they know who to get in contact with when they have an issues they want addressing,” said the Island Innovation VI Form student.

Over the next two years, Joe will take part in monthly IW Youth Council meetings and in November he will travel to the House of Commons to participate in the Youth Parliament national sitting and debate.

However, he says ‘the majority of the role is taking up issues from young people on the Island and getting in contact with the decision makers to try and make a change.’

Speaking about his aims as MYP, he added: “I want to give young people on the Island a voice. Our MP has made it pretty clear that he doesn’t support votes at 16, and it obviously isn’t the priority of the government, either.

“16 and 17 year olds were denied the right to vote in the EU referendum, despite the success of including them in the 2014 Scottish Independence referendum. I want to do everything I can to ensure that our voices are heard by the IW Council, our MP, and the government. We cannot continue to be ignored.”

In his election manifesto, Joe says the main issues he will focus on will be ensuring young people have a voice on Europe, tackling discrimination and xenophobia, and political representation for young people.

In addition to Joe’s appointment, the latest IW youth councillors for 2017-2019 have been also been elected.

The new councillors are Tom Jackson, James Loosemore, Bailey Woodford, Alicia Allen, Charlie Button, Max Battista and Hannah Chilton — who will sit for the first time at the end of this month.

The IW Youth Council is an advisory body to the IW Council and all Youth Council and member of Youth Parliament activities are non-political.

You can follow Joe on Twitter @joedaviesMYP or send him an email at joedavies137@gmail.com.