Delegates: Ms. Orla Murphy (21 years), Mr. Eoin O’Liatháin (25 years)
35. Ms. Murphy (Ireland), speaking as a youth delegate, said that young people faced challenges everywhere. Even in a country such as hers, where 90per cent of young people completed secondary school and half progressed to higher education, youth suicide remained an issue, especially for young men. The Government had just launched a new national youth strategy to help all young people to realise their potential. As a society, Ireland looked forward to further embracing minority groups and refugees. The Sustainable Development Goals were a universal call for action, and she asked Member States to consider the role, rights, abilities and contributions of young people when discussing resolutions and policies. Young people were not just the future, but also the present.
36. Mr. O’Liatháin (Ireland), speaking as a youth delegate, said that the Irish youth delegates had been inspired by their experience and wanted to continue to carry out the work of the United Nations. He encouraged more countries to take part in the youth delegate programme. Young people were affected by the issues of the day and had great capacity to make positive change. In Ireland, where homosexual acts had been a criminal offence until the 1990s, youth compassion, determination and organization had been largely responsible for making it the first country in the [*8*] world to adopt marriage equality through a national referendum. Young people should continue to participate in decision-making, and they should be involved in monitoring and implementing the Sustainable Development Goals.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/70/SR.2