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Make Your Mark 2019 Results

This year, Make Your Mark was altered slightly. Instead of having one box with five issues, we saw three different boxes. The top box was for issues to be campaigned on in all four countries of the UK. The middle box was for devolved campaigns, only to be campaigned on in England. Finally, there was the Local Issue box, wherein young people could write whatever issue they felt was important.

This year, 6,213 young people in Blackpool voted in the ballot. The most important issue overall, as well as the most important UK-wide campaign, was Protect the Environment with 2,666 votes. Given the global protests that have taken place this year, we were not surprised to see that the environment was young people’s primary concern. Blackpool Youth Council, the youth political organisation in Blackpool, have already began planning our action in response to this. We intend to enter discussions with Blackpool Council about having more domestic bins placed around town to make it easier for people to dispose of their waste. This is also because the most important local issue for Blackpool was litter, according to our young electorate.

Top of the list in the devolved box was mental health with 1,891 votes. Mental health was voted as the most important issue for Blackpool in 2017 and then again in 2018. It is now extremely clear that Blackpool’s young people demand action on the mental health crisis. And rightly so, given that Blackpool receives the lowest funding for mental health services in the country and only having 2 specialists in borderline personality disorders when the town also has the highest rates of such disorders in young people. Blackpool Youth Council are preparing to start a campaign which will see posters placed on bus and tram stops featuring techniques to achieve mental ease that don’t all necessarily involve talking. We also aim to change the perception of mental health. People have negative connotations to mental health, but we envision a new image for it where it is seen alike physical fitness, that one can be fit and how it can be an enjoyable experience to become fit. In the same way, one can have good mental health and the journey to that state doesn’t have to be tedious and unpleasant. Blackpool’s Member of Youth Parliament Andrew Speight will prepare a speech on this issue to give in the House of Commons to highlight how strained Blackpool’s mental health services are and to make the desperate plea for additional funding from the Government.

However, it is also to be noted that knife crime came close with 1,764 votes. During the Make Your Mark campaign, Blackpool Youth Council visited two of the town’s police cadet groups and spoke to them about what they feel is important. We heard overwhelmingly that there should be more security cameras in Blackpool’s parks, especially Stanley Park. Police should also target their patrols around parks as it is where gangs tend to gather. The youth council have heard how worried young people are about gangs in Blackpool’s parks and we, as always, stand firmly with them.  We shall begin engagements with the police about realising the demand for more cameras in parks to hopefully make Blackpool’s parks safer places for young people to go outside and enjoy.

In addition to these issues, Blackpool’s young people also highlighted their concerns for the other issues on the ballot. It was shown that there is a desire to tackle hate crime (1,676 votes), to end child poverty (889 votes), to introduce a curriculum that teaches life skills (885 votes), to stop street harassment (749 votes), to make the United Nations Convention on the rights of the child statutory law (597 votes) and to welcome refugees (510 votes). There was also a great deal of young people who want to tackle homelessness in Blackpool, the second place issue in the local issues box, as well as addressing drug problems, stopping bullying and creating more youth clubs.

Blackpool Youth Council invite all 11-18 year olds to Blackpool Town Hall at 17:30 on Monday 4th November for our annual youth summit. This is an opportunity for young people across the town to tell us more about why these issues are important to them and raise more issues that haven’t been covered on the Make Your Mark ballot, as well as question a panel of professionals in these fields and Blackpool’s MYP on what they intend to do about these problems. Then, on Friday 8th November, MYPs from across the UK will meet in the House of Commons for the Annual Sitting, where they shall debate and vote upon the issues highlighted in Make Your Mark and vote for one to become the focus of the UK Youth Parliament’s campaigning activity for the next 12 months.

Make Your Mark 2018 Results

Make Your Mark, the annual national ballot of all young people aged 11-18 took place from August to October this year. 7147 young people from Blackpool made their voices heard by voting on the issue that they felt most passionate about. The 10 possible issues were: Mental Health; End Period Poverty; Votes at 16; End Knife Crime; Curriculum for Life; Support Youth Services; Equal Pay, Equal Work; Homelessness; Transport; Welcome Refugees. The issue that Blackpool’s young people voted as their top priority was ‘Mental Health’ which recieved 14.9% (1066 votes) of total ballots. ‘End Knife Crime’ was second with 13.3% (954 votes) and in third was ‘Curriculum for Life’ with 13.1% (934 votes).

‘Mental Health’ has now been the top issue in Blackpool for 2 years in a row, being the top issue in 2017 as well.

Blackpool Youth Council will work with schools, colleges, youth groups, Blackpool Council and other local organisations in order to help raise awareness on these issues, allowing Blackpool to become a better town for young people to live, learn and work.

The starting point for developing our strategy for these issues is holding our annual Youth Summit which for this Make Your Mark cycle will be held at The Oracle, St. Anne’s Rd. on Wednesday 14th November 2018 at 5.30pm. Our Youth Summit is open to the public whereby young people can question a panel of professionals and decision makers on the top issues raised in Make Your Mark.

Each vote cast is one young person making their voice heard to change their lives and their town for the better. We would like to thank every organisation and young person that took part in this important vote to change the lives of the young people in our town.

If you would like to find out more about Blackpool Youth Council, find out more about our Youth Summit and engage with our campaigns to represent and empower Blackpool’s young people, contact myself (Connor Danson, Chair of Blackpool Youth Council) at: dmyp@blackpoolyc.org

Make Your Mark 2017 Results

Make Your Mark, the annual national ballot of all young people aged 11-18 took place from August to October this year. 4773 young people from Blackpool made their voices heard by voting on the issue that they felt most passionate about. The 10 possible issues were: A Curriculum to prepare us for life; Votes at 16; Protect LGBT+ People; Support for Young Carers; Transport; First Aid Education for All Young People; Mental Health; Make Invisible Disabilities Visible; Protecting School Budgets from Damaging Cuts; Work Experience Hubs for 11-18 year olds.

The issue that young people across Blackpool voted as their top priority was ‘Mental Health’ which received 15.3% of total ballots. ‘A Curriculum to prepare us for life’ was second with 14.7% and in third was ‘Work Experience hubs for 11-18 year olds’ with 11.4%.

Blackpool Youth Council will be working with local organisations including schools, colleges and youth groups in order to make a difference for young people based upon the result of this ballot. We aim to meet with many of these organisations during our annual Youth Summit to discuss these key issues.

Each vote cast is one young person making their voice heard to change their lives and their town for the better. We would like to thank every organisation, school, college, youth group and young person that took part in this important vote to change the lives of the young people in our town.

If you would like to find out more about Blackpool Youth Council and engage with our campaigns to represent and empower Blackpool’s young people. contact us at: april@urpotential.co.uk. Social Media links: @blackpoolyc (Twitter) @blackpoolyc (Facebook Page)


Make Your Mark gives a unique opportunity to reach out to young people who go on to be opinion formers and leaders of the future. This year, through school, online and through our grassroots we’ll be reaching out to young people once again. Last year a total of 978,216 young people from every corner of the country took part in the annual Make Your Mark ballot.  The ballot will decide what Members of the UK Youth Parliament should debate and vote on to be their campaign for in 2018. The debate will take place in November 2017 within the House of Commons.

Follow all the action on twitter via #MakeYourMark

More info on Make Your Mark… Watch the video below

 WE NEED THE SUPPORT OF SCHOOLS, COLLEGES & YOUTH ORGANISATIONS

Each year, we’ve had the support of schools, colleges and youth organisations in our quest to get young people across the UK to take part in the Make Your Mark ballot. This year we’d like the support of even more so we can reach more young people.

What happens with the results?

All the results get added up in October 2017. This selects the topics that Members of the UK Youth Parliament debate and vote on to be their campaign for the year ahead, during their sitting in the House of Commons, which is due to take place in November 2017.

How do we help?

There’s a dedicated website for online voting and loads of resources for use in groups, assemblies etc. Which will go live in mid-July.


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