Labor commits to a Youth Minister and pledges over $3m to support young Aussies


Labor will restore funding to the Australian Youth Affairs Coalition as part of its plan to support young people.

Above video: Climate change's generational gap.

Labor has promised it will “restore young people’s faith in politics” as part of a multi-million dollar youth affairs proposal.

The cornerstone of the proposal is Labor’s commitment to $600,000 worth of annual funding for the Australian Youth Affairs Coalition (AYAC), the peak body representing the interests of young people.

“This announcement demonstrates a willingness to work with young people and will help repair their trust and confidence in government and political systems,” said AYAC chairperson Katie Acheson.

In addition to the yearly funding, Labor has committed an additional $3 million for projects conducted in partnership with youth stakeholders.

In total, Labor is committing $5.4 million over a four year term to create a national voice for young Australians. 

The projects will focus on building a youth worker community of practice, providing opportunities for direct representation of young people and encouraging increased political participation.

Finally, young people have clear leadership from one of the major parties to bring their issues into focus. 

“The future should be fair for young Australians. Political inaction on critical issues means that young people haven’t had a fighting chance," Acheson said.

Last year, Labor committed to re-installing a Minister for Young People if they gain power and confirmed that the role would be filled by current Shadow Minister for Young People, Terri Butler.

While Labor did not reiterate their commitment to a Minister for Young People in this morning’s announcement, Ms Acheson confirmed to The Feed that it is a priority for the party.

The AYAC was defunded and the youth affairs portfolio was scrapped in 2013 when Tony Abbott came to power.

Labor’s other commitments to young people include abolishing the controversial Youth Jobs PaTH program, restoring penalty rates, and reviewing the adequacy of Newstart and Youth Allowance.

Click here to read Labor's full proposal for younger Australians.

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