Hebburn teenager takes part in Houses of Parliament debate

Kate Palmer and Liam Cartwright, both A Level students at Newcastle Sixth Form College and members of UK Youth Parliament.
Kate Palmer and Liam Cartwright, both A Level students at Newcastle Sixth Form College and members of UK Youth Parliament.
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A teenager from South Tyneside has taken part in a debate in the Houses of Parliament after getting involved in a national project.

Kate Palmer, 16, from Hebburn, joined over 250 members of the UK Youth Parliament (UKYP) from across the country in London last week to debate a range of topical issues.

It’s important for young people across the North East to have the opportunity to get involved in initiatives like UK Youth Parliament

Kate Palmer

The student, who is studying for her A Levels at Newcastle Sixth Form College, took part in debating issues including the need for a ‘curriculum for life’ and tackling racial and religious discrimination.

A short debate was also held to reflect on current political affairs and their ideas for a ‘better, kinder democracy’.

Kate, a former pupil at Hebburn Comprehensive School, said: “It’s important for young people across the North East to have the opportunity to get involved in initiatives like UK Youth Parliament to ensure that their voices can be heard on issues that affect them.

“Becoming a member of UK Youth Parliament has given me working experience of how politics and democracy operates in the UK – and now that funding has been secured to fund UK Youth Parliament until 2020, even more young people have been given the chance to get involved.”

UKYP is an initiative run by the British Youth Council with the support of the government, but is not officially part of the parliament of the United Kingdom.

It has over 600 elected MYPs (Members) and DMYPs (Deputy Members) – and MYPs are usually elected in annual youth elections either directly or through local youth councils.

This event was one of two annual sittings of the full UK Youth Parliament.