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06 November 2014

Thursday 6 November 2014

As 1,000 youth professionals come together at Creative Collisions to discuss the challenges facing young people, a coalition of youth sector leaders publish an open letter setting out our case for change…

Today the new Minister for Civil Society and Young People, Rob Wilson MP, and his shadow Lisa Nandy MP have an opportunity to change the conversation with and about young people.  The two MPs will meet 1,000 youth professionals and young people at the Creative Collisions conference, in the Olympic Park, to talk about the challenges facing young people in their journey to independent adulthood.   But will anybody else be listening?  Why is it that 20% of our population in whom 100% of the future rests are so frequently overlooked or misrepresented when it comes to discussion, policy and resources? Could it be that society doesn’t care or there aren’t as many votes in youth issues?

Those of us involved in ‘Creative Collisions’ believe that investing in young people is not only necessary and pays, but is essential for this country’s future prosperity.  As youth sector leaders, we are coming together today to set a new agenda.  We want to ensure that young people get the priority attention they deserve.  We are calling on politicians, business leaders, academics, and all who do care, to rise to the challenge and join us.   Each of us will hold our own organisations to account and resist the discourse about young people as the challenge and instead focus on their talents, potential and futures.   Just imagine what the UK would be like if EVERY young person was able to meet their full potential.

For that to happen we need coordinated and determined leadership, better partnerships and respect for the youth agenda.  Today marks the start of a campaign to show the country that young people are a force to be reckoned with. 

Yours

Mita Desai, Chair, British Youth Council,

Jane Slowey, Chief Executive, The Foyer Federation

Thomas Lawson, Chief Executive, Leap Confronting Conflict,

Rosie Ferguson, Chief Executive, London Youth,

Michael Lynas, Chief Executive, NCS Trust,

Toni Pearce, President, National Union of Students,

Fiona Black, Chief Executive, National Youth Agency,

Susanne Rauprich, Chief Executive, The National Council for Voluntary Youth Services,

Anna Smee, Chief Executive, UK Youth

Moira Swinbank, Chief Executive, vInspired