What are our values?

Elections are decided by those that turn up and youth engagement is key to ensuring that governments are working in the best interests of future generations. Studies suggest that people who vote when they are young create a habit, continuing to vote throughout their adult life. Examples like the Scottish Independence Referendum in 2014 showed that younger voters were more engaged (75% turnout 16-18 year olds).

While there is no silver bullet to voter engagement, UnitedFuture wants to educate and empower our younger generations to be more involved in the decisions that will impact their lives.

What will we do?
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - NOVEMBER 20:  A voter places a ballot paper into the ballot box during the Mana By-Election at Cannons Creek School polling booth on November 20, 2010 in Wellington, New Zealand. The Mana seat was vacated by former Labour Pacific Island Affairs Minister Winnie Laban, who announced her resignation from the New Zealand Parliament in August. Eight candidates will contest the by-election.  (Photo by Marty Melville/Getty Images)

Empower our youth:

Empower youth to be more involved in decisions that will affect their futures.

  • Conduct formal inquiry into youth engagement in elections with a view to reduce the voting age to 16. Scope to include potential issues and mitigations;
  • Ensure that every effort is made to ensure that all young people are enrolled to vote (when able to do so), by coordinating with schools;
  • Review role of student representatives on school board of trustees and youth councils to ensure meaningful participation.

Educate our youth;

Ensure that young New Zealanders understand their civic rights and responsibilities;

  • Introduce compulsory and comprehensive civics education from years 1-13, including information about elections, our electoral system, parliament, central and local government, courts, the Head of State and other institutions;
  • Create a fund (available to schools with disadvantaged students) to bring their students to Wellington to visit institutions such as Parliament, the Treaty of Waitangi, National Library, Te Papa, and to meet MPs, Ministers, the Governor-General, and Judges.

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