Should 16/17 year olds be able to vote?

It’s a topic that’s been well discussed over the past 10 years or so but now sixteen and seventeen year olds in Scotland have the power to vote for their independence in the referendum which has led to talks this week in the house of commons as to whether the voting age in the UK should be lower to sixteen.

The UK youth parliament has held an assembly in the house of commons and said “it’s about time sixteen and seventeen year olds got the vote” They argue that at sixteen you can be taxed on income, work full time, chose to leave school and get married so they already contribute to society so they should be able to help chose how it is run.

It has been reported that many 14-24 year olds feel that MPs are “out of touch” and that young people are uninterested in politics but it is argued that lowering the voting age would get more young people to engage with politics.

Coventry Labour MP, Geoffrey Robinson, is in favour of sixteen and seventeen year olds to vote in England saying, “If they can fight in the army, they should vote. They’re just as capable of making their minds up.” He also added “Labour would be more in favour than the Tories”

A mother with a sixteen-year-old child has said, “I think they should be able to vote as the government have policies which effect young people like jobs and education”

The general public seems to have mixed views over whether they should get the vote or not “I’ve never voted in my life but no, I think they’re too young, nobody knows about politics, only politicians”

“They’re old enough to play the lottery and to have sex so must be old enough to vote”

Although the government may be ready for a change, it looks like some of the sixteen year old just don’t want the vote “I don’t care, It doesn’t bother me, they never seem to do anything to make a change to people my age anyways”

Opinions seem mixed about the vote but most people who are already old enough to vote seem to think that as the policies affect them they should be able to vote on them too.


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