Young people should be empowered to create a better Aotearoa New Zealand and overcome the challenges created by previous generations.

Democracy must include young people

  • Young people should have representation or a voice on local and community boards.
  • The Local Government Act should require councils to resource Youth Councils and employ child and youth advocates.
  • Civics, human rights, and environmental education should be taught in schools.

The health system should meet the needs of young people

  • Improving youth mental health services should be an urgent government priority.
  • Government should work towards providing free healthcare for all young people, including dental and mental health care, no matter where they live.
  • Schools should teach comprehensive and evidence-based health, sex, and drug education.
  • Young people, in particular young women, should have access to family planning services.
  • Programmes for teen parents should be accessible, widespread, and well-funded.

Young people have a right to live free from violence

  • Schools and early childhood centres should be inclusive and support the elimination of prejudice, racism, bullying intimidation, and violence.
  • Schools and educational institutions should teach conflict resolution and reconciliation.
  • Schools should partner with rainbow youth organisations to reduce violence and suicide in youth LGBTQI communities.

We should take an evidence-based, harm reduction approach to drug use

  • Young people with addiction issues should have access to appropriate rehabilitation programmes designed specifically for young people.
  • The legal age for purchasing alcohol should be 18.
  • Personal cannabis use should be legal for people aged 18 and over.

Youth justice should be rehabilitative

  • The age of criminal responsibility should be 14.
  • No one under 18 should be held in a Police cell, or in a prison cell with adults.
  • Small scale youth rehabilitation centres should be established.
  • Family Group Conferences should be better resourced.
  • Tikanga Māori and marae-based justice and rehabilitation approaches should be developed, funded, and used widely in sentencing, prisons, and other parts of the justice system.


Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
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