Delegates: Ms. Koopman, Mr. Declercq
62. Ms. Koopman (Belgium), youth delegate, said that young people were often underrepresented in many places, but that the United Nations Youth Delegate Programme was a good example of how they could be included in discussions at the international level. Similarly, the Youth Climate Summit, held in September 2019, had provided young people with a platform to showcase their solutions to climate change and engage with decision makers on the defining issue of their time. Since many Member States had not used that opportunity to find common solutions, she urged them to incorporate more young people into their delegations and to pay more attention to their participation. The holding of the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth 2019 and Youth Forum Lisboa+21 in June 2019 was a clear sign that the importance of youth participation was growing and that policy makers were taking notice.
63. Mr. Declercq (Belgium), youth delegate, said that policymakers should do more to listen to the views of young people. To that end, schools must endeavour to provide students with a better understanding of democratic society and their place within it, youth assemblies should be established and young people should be given a voice in their local communities, including on budgetary matters. At the national level, youth councils and youth organizations could play a pivotal role to enhance the inclusion of young people in decision-making processes. Although the United Nations had in recent years shown more ambition in its youth policies, young people should be provided with more opportunities to have an impact on decision-making both in the United Nations system and at the national and local levels.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/74/SR.2
UN Doc.: A/C.3/74/SR.2, 1 October 2019, p. 9, Youth Delegate Search: https://youthdelegatesearch.org/belgium-2019/.