On the evening of Nov. 9, I was incredibly pleased to be a part of the very first Winnipeg South Youth Council meeting.
Eighteen of Winnipeg South’s best and brightest gathered at the constituency office to meet one another and discuss what issues the council would most like to tackle throughout the year ahead.
The cross section of our local youth ranged from ages 15 to 24. There were representatives from the University of Manitoba, Fort Richmond Collegiate, Collège Jeanne-Sauvé, University of Winnipeg Collegiate and the Université de Saint-Boniface.
When asked to name what issues they felt deserved attention, participants gave answers on a broad range of topics. The environment, climate change and education were mentioned repeatedly, along with women’s and minority rights. Other concerns included electoral reform, healthcare policy, poverty reduction and mental health.
The response to the introductory meeting from the new council was positive. Kaitlyn Crocker, 21, applied to the Winnipeg South Youth Council hoping to meet like-minded individuals and have a voice in the decisions the government will be making.
When asked to comment on the initial meeting, Kaitlyn spoke enthusiastically about the diversity of the group.
"It’s a pretty broad range of ages and experiences. Everyone has a different story of how they got here — we’re all different, but we’re all here, and on the same page," she said.
The Winnipeg South Youth Council will continue to meet periodically throughout the year in order to discuss and make recommendations on the issues that matter to our younger generation.
I look forward to hearing their ideas and concerns in the months ahead.
Lest We Forget
I felt privileged to spend this past Remembrance Day with the many veterans and community members who attended the moving ceremony held at the St. Norbert Cenotaph. Erected in recognition of 13 soldiers who fought and died in the First World War, the cenotaph reminds us of the importance of acknowledging and honouring the sacrifice of all those who have fought, and continue to serve so that Canada may remain a nation of peace and prosperity.