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Tameside Youth Council Project Well Underway
Tuesday 19th April 2016 @ 10:07 by Tom Greggan

Tameside will soon have its very own Youth Council- one of last year’s 15 pledges for 2015.

Tameside Member for Youth Parliament, Charlotte Cooper is helping set up the body along with Deputy Youth MP Emily Sykes. Emily will chair the youth council when it is up and running.

Charlotte said: “At the moment we’re sorting out the roles and responsibilities we’re all going to have and by September we’ll officially have the Youth Council.

“We only started in September last year and it’ll take a full year to sort out. We meet every other week at Copley Youth Base.”

Emily added: “We’ve started out with our pledges and burning issues and decided we like things such as the Curriculum for life and help for mental health and things like that.”

Charlotte, a Year 11 pupil at Copley Academy and Emily, who is in Year 10 at Astley, hope that the council will be fully representative of all schools and areas in Tameside.

And Cllr Oliver Ryan, who has lead the project, says it’s not just a token gesture from the council.

He said: “It’s not just the council holding them at arm’s length and saying ‘Here’s what we’d like you to do’. They’ve really gone away and thought about this. We’ve had informal session with the leader and deputy leader. They’ve come to full council a couple of times and put questions to people.

“They’re a real, accountable body, representative of young people across Tameside. I think it’s exactly what we needed. It’s just a case now of getting some proper school elections underway later this year and making sure that it’s representative of the whole of Tameside.”

And Cllr Ryan says that in Charlotte and Emily, the Youth Council is in safe hands. “I think they’re fantastic, they’re great young people,” he said.

“I’ve been to a few meeting with them and it’s great to have some really enthusiastic young people- young women- on board representing Tameside for all our young people. In the council, when they’re in meetings, making decisions with the council, they’ll be a strong force.”