The kick off of the 8th cycle of the EU Youth Dialogue is a fact, after the EU Youth Conference that took place both in Berlin and online, between 2-5 October.
The 8th Cycle of the EU Youth Dialogue is currently running from the 1st of July 2020 to 31st December 2021 under the Trio Presidency of Germany – Portugal – Slovenia.
The topic of the 8th cycle is Youth Goal #9 “Space and Participation for All” under the title “Europe for YOUth – YOUth for Europe: Space for Democracy and
Participation”. Throughout this process, we will look for concrete recommendationson how to implement this Youth Goal at the European, national, regional and local levels.
The youth delegates who participated had the opportunity to engage in discussions with EU stakeholders and politicians and express their views and concerns regarding Youth Goal #9.
After four days of dialogue and the participation of the youth delegates in different workshops, they have set seven demands as the foundations of the rest of the 8th cycle of the EU Youth Dialogue:
-We demand critical thinking to become a part of the obligatory private and public school curriculum for at least 1 hour a week from the ages 10-16 in order to fight fake news and disinformation with media and information literacy and to foster youth participation/motivation to be a part of the debate.
-We demand co-decision-making processes on all levels with young people and youth organisations implemented through a rights-based approach.
-Ensure young people’s access to formal decision-making by lowering the age of voting and political candidacy to 16 in all elections, while ensuring all youth have the opportunity to gain sufficient skills and motivation to participate actively and passively in elections, as well as removing all barriers to voting.
-Decision makers should encourage and invest in dedicated processes which amplify young minority voices and ensures their direct engagement.
-We demand a new EU Fund to set up and sustain youth spaces.
-We request that the European Commission puts the creation of safe digital spaces for young people, along with the support and funding of developing digital literacy activities as one of the top priorities in all programs along prioritizing it horizontally at European level.
-We demand funds available for permanent structures of participation.
The results of the conference were handed to the Federal Minister for Youth of Germany, Dr. Franziska Giffey, while she promised to discuss the demands and proposals of young people with her colleagues in Europe.
The conference concluded with the handover of the presidency of the Council of the European Union to the Portuguese delegation.
Find more about the EU Youth Goals at https://sdcyprus.eu/eu-youth-goals.