Teen leads fight for votes at 16

Carmarthenshire teenager Gwen Griffiths is taking the fight for votes at 16 to the Council Chamber in County Hall.

Seventeen-year-old Gwen from Pembrey recently met Carmarthenshire County Council Executive Board member for Education and Children Cllr Glynog Davies to work with him to create a motion to put before Full Council on October 18.

Cllr Davies has agreed to put the motion to debate and vote on whether councillors support 16 and 17 year olds having the right to vote in local and national elections.

It is the culmination of a campaign launched last January involving Gwen, who is a member of Carmarthenshire Youth Council and elected Communications Officer, and almost 300 other UK Youth Parliament (UKYP) members to raise awareness about Votes@16, which is the UKYP’s priority issue for the year.

Gwen, leading a group of Carmarthenshire Youth Council members, arranged meetings with local MPs Nia Griffiths, Simon Hart and Jonathan Edwards to discuss the campaign and to discover their views on giving 16 and 17 year old’s the right to vote in elections.

In response to such positive feedback received from MPs the UKYP team decided to promote the campaign further by meeting up with local celebrities; including members of the Scarlets rugby team.

The UKYP team have also been working hard promoting the campaign on Social Media using #votes@16 and have been taking photographs of people who have declared their support holding a bespoke photo frame, developed specifically to promote the campaign. They include Cllr Glynog Davies and director of education and children’s services Gareth Morgans.

Gwen said “It is great meeting with local decision makers and seeing how much support the campaign is gaining.”

Gwen is intending to extend the social media presence further by taking the photo frame into Carmarthen town centre and surrounding areas, so that members of the public also have the opportunity to get involved and pledge their support for Votes@16.

The next step of the campaign is for the UKYP team to work closely with newly elected school reps who have been asked to organize debates on votes@16 within their school by the end of October, to persuade all young people across Carmarthenshire to get involved.

Cllr Glynog Davies said: “I support the campaign because 16 year olds can work, marry, have children and join the Army so why shouldn’t they vote?

“Lowering the voting age would give 16 and 17 year olds the chance to have their say on the issues of the day.”

Carmarthenshire teenager Gwen Griffiths is taking the fight for votes at 16 to the Council Chamber in County Hall.

Seventeen-year-old Gwen from Pembrey recently met Carmarthenshire County Council Executive Board member for Education and Children Cllr Glynog Davies to work with him to create a motion to put before Full Council on October 18.

Cllr Davies has agreed to put the motion to debate and vote on whether councillors support 16 and 17 year olds having the right to vote in local and national elections.

It is the culmination of a campaign launched last January involving Gwen, who is a member of Carmarthenshire Youth Council and elected Communications Officer, and almost 300 other UK Youth Parliament (UKYP) members to raise awareness about Votes@16, which is the UKYP’s priority issue for the year.

Gwen, leading a group of Carmarthenshire Youth Council members, arranged meetings with local MPs Nia Griffiths, Simon Hart and Jonathan Edwards to discuss the campaign and to discover their views on giving 16 and 17 year old’s the right to vote in elections.

In response to such positive feedback received from MPs the UKYP team decided to promote the campaign further by meeting up with local celebrities; including members of the Scarlets rugby team.

The UKYP team have also been working hard promoting the campaign on Social Media using #votes@16 and have been taking photographs of people who have declared their support holding a bespoke photo frame, developed specifically to promote the campaign. They include Cllr Glynog Davies and director of education and children’s services Gareth Morgans.

Gwen said “It is great meeting with local decision makers and seeing how much support the campaign is gaining.”

Gwen is intending to extend the social media presence further by taking the photo frame into Carmarthen town centre and surrounding areas, so that members of the public also have the opportunity to get involved and pledge their support for Votes@16.

The next step of the campaign is for the UKYP team to work closely with newly elected school reps who have been asked to organize debates on votes@16 within their school by the end of October, to persuade all young people across Carmarthenshire to get involved.

Cllr Glynog Davies said: “I support the campaign because 16 year olds can work, marry, have children and join the Army so why shouldn’t they vote?

“Lowering the voting age would give 16 and 17 year olds the chance to have their say on the issues of the day.”

Gwen Griffiths and fellow members of Carmarthenshire Youth Council campaigning for Votes@16.
Carmarthenshire Youth Council Executive Board member for Education and Children Cllr Glynog Davies supporting the Votes@16 campaign

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