Polls open for first ever Welsh Youth Parliament election
The polls open at 10:00 today (Monday 5 November) for the first ever Welsh Youth Parliament election and young people across Wales are being encouraged to cast their vote to choose their local representative. It will give Wales’ young people between 11 and 18 a completely new way to make themselves heard at a national level.
- 11-18 years olds across Wales to choose representatives in the Welsh Youth Parliament
- 480 young people apply to be candidates, over 13,000 registered to vote already
- Polls open for electronic voting until 25 November
480 candidates will contest 40 constituency seats across Wales. With multiple candidates vying for each seat, young people aged between 11-18 will have a real choice of who to send to the Senedd to represent them. All the candidates have posted their details on the Welsh Youth Parliament website and will begin campaigning today.
Anyone aged between 11-18 and living in Wales can register to vote and over 13,000 have already done so. Young people can still register to vote up until 16 November and polls close as 17.00 on Sunday, 25 November.
Voting is done electronically and any device can be used to cast a vote once the voter has received an email with their own unique code. It’s believed this the first time electronic voting has ever been used in an inaugural election in the UK.
To reflect the make-up of the National Assembly itself, which has 60 members, a further 20 seats will be selected from partner organisations in Wales. These 20 will be returned to ensure the representation of diverse groups of young people.
All Youth Parliament Members (MWYPs) will serve a two year term. It will empower young people to identify, raise awareness of and debate the important issues which matter to them.
“I am delighted that we can finally open the polls for the Welsh Youth Parliament,” said Elin Jones AM, Llywydd of the National Assembly for Wales.
“This is happened after years of planning and consultation with more than 5,000 young people across Wales and is a key part of how the National Assembly will involve the next generation in our work.
“I would urge anyone who is eligible and hasn’t registered to vote to visit the Welsh Youth Parliament website, to find out who is standing for election in their area and how they intend to represent you.”
Candidates are non-partisan and should not belong to any party. They will campaign on a number of issues but, when asked, the most frequently mentioned were (in order of popularity); Emotional and Mental Health Awareness and Support, The Environment (Littering and Plastic Waste) and Life Skills in the Curriculum.
Many schools across Wales are arranging their own polling days during the Welsh Youth Parliament election with some AMs taking part to help raise awareness of the democratic process. (Details below)
Results of the Election are expected to be announced in early December.
Check out the candidates and decide who gets your vote.
View candidates ›