Pupils from all eight Moray secondary schools are taking to the polls this month as they seek to elect their two representatives at the Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP).
Elections to the SYP are held every two years for the parliament which represents the views of Scotland’s young people, promoting the values of democracy, inclusion, political independence and passion.
Four candidates are standing for election in Moray – Forres Academy pupils Elinor Pearce and Jack Ewan Slinger, and Buckie High pupils Laura Smith and John Thain. Elections are held under the Single Transferable Vote process with pupils being asked to vote for their preferred candidates in order by placing a number 1 to 4 beside their names.
Ballots will be open today for Keith Grammar School and Lossiemouth High School students and on March 5 at Buckie, while those at Elgin High, Elgin Academy and Speyside High will be asked to vote on Tuesday, March 10.
Forres Academy students will take to the polls on Wednesday, March 11 while those at Milnes High School will complete the process on Friday, March 13.
Ballot boxes will then be gathered and members of the Moray Youth Council have been charged with the task of counting papers before announcing the result of the elections.
- In her election address Elinor Pearce said: “No matter who you are, what you have to say should be heard – and as a MSYP I would make sure that I am contactable. That is why I would not have an annual question time, I would make sure that I am available whenever you need me.”
- Jack Slinger believes he has seen both the ‘good’ and the ‘ugly’ side of growing up in modern-day Scotland. He said: “It is for these reasons I believe I should be elected to become an MSYP. The MSYP should have experience in good and bad, viewpoints fair and equal for different groups as well as first hand experience in many of the problems that face teenagers like me.”
- For Laura Smith the opinions of young people in Moray should be heard in the national forum. She said: “Having experience in leading and working with the young people of my local area, I’m committed to making a positive change for what I believe to be one of Scotland’s most valuable assets – the youth, we are the future.”
- John Thain is standing for a second term at a MSYP, pointing out in his manifesto that he had assisted in the creation of the Moray Youth Strategy and has been part of the Moray Youth Council for the last five years. He said: “I will raise awareness of child poverty in Moray, assist in the creation of a young carers bus pass and campaign for cheaper public transport for young people.”
Further information on the Scottish Youth Parliament
Manifesto’s of all four Moray candidates