OYC Meeting Minutes – 12/07/2023
IDEAL YOUTH COUNCIL (DAYNA)
This section of the meeting was for diversity indicators, including what checks could be done to see if the youth council is representative to the population of young residents in Oldham.
In the first part of this section, Dayna introduced to us Oldham’s data from the 2021 Census, which showed ethnicities, disability status, religions and whether or not a resident is a young carer amongst all young people, with youth councillors drawing ideas on how many young people should fall in each demographic for the youth council to be considered perfectly representative.
However, it was made aware that these are rough indicators, and additionally that some religious groups for instance, such as Sikhs, Hindus, Buddhists and Jews don’t represent much of Oldham’s population, but that their views also matter.
Additionally, youth councillors later discussed about other diversity indicators which we could have, such as economic background, sexual orientation, whether someone has English as an Additional Language (EAL) and refugee status for instance.
Note that these diversity indicators don’t necessarily mean thats how people will be recruited, as we will still elect people on, however young people may always be co-opted onto the youth council. It was additionally noted that one seat on the youth council is reserved for a Children in Care Council (CICC) member, and another for a Barrier Breakers member.
CURRENT CAMPAIGNS (CHRIS)
Currently, our primary campaign is on Vaping and Smoking, with there being an overview and scrutiny panel with Councillor Eddie Moores, where we can bring up disposable vapes, and that Isaac and Joey made a motion to Oldham Council on Wednesday the 12th of July 2023 asking for the council to write to the national government about banning disposable vapes. The motion can be viewed on YouTube here.
It was also mentioned that Rochdale Youth Council want to collaborate with Oldham Youth Council on the campaign, especially since they have been doing campaigns on vapes, and for instance have gathered 4 bin bags worth of disposable vapes on the street, which they can’t even recycle at the recycling centre due to fear of the vapes catching on fire.
A ten forward survey was sent out to young people, with over 500 responses, with around 9% of young people saying that they vape, and the most common reason for those already vaping, previously vaped or has considered vaping being due to curiosity. Using this information, youth councillors came up with ideas on what we could do about this. Ideas included:
- To raise awareness on the health concerns.
- Videos or workshops on lived experiences.
- Posters, ideally placed on the back of toilet stalls in schools.
- Workshops on alternate provisions (e.g. to stress)
- Pamphlets / information provision on how to stop, including perhaps mobile units going round to schools giving this information.
It was noted that the government are trying to get vapes behind rolled shutters, like cigarettes are currently.
EVENTS AND TRIPS (CHRIS)
- Earlier this week, Youth Councillors were emailed about the Oldham Youth Service summer programme. Anyone who wants to participate must note that they must attend the workshops if they would like to go on the reward trip associated. Alongside this, some sessions may be oversubscribed so names may be drawn out of a hat to decide who goes. Chris emailed details, however please email Dayna or Areeta if you would like to go.
- Sat 22 July 2023, there is a Pride Parade in Oldham Town Centre, with an event at the Queen Elizabeth Hall afterwards (with free entry). Youth workers can acompany you in the parade. Organisations around Oldham such as the Proud Trust will also be present, and the event at Queen Elizabeth Hall will have all sorts of activities such as music, flag making, badge making, alongside robotics / coding (done by the Proud Trust) and a drag artist doing story time.
- Mon 31 July 2023, Beeheard, a group of young people from Greater Manchester who meet on last Monday of the month about mental health. It is about directing what happens in Greater Manchester.
- Overview and Scrutiny; Councillor Eddie Moores wants youth councillors to represent young people at the overview and scrutiny panels (as stated on the meeting on the 14th of June). It was requested that there could be 4 youth councillors available; 2 for the Children and Young People panel and 2 for the Adult and Health panel (where vaping can be raised). It is noted that the representatives can question those on the panel, but does not have a vote. Young people must be available for all meetings, and dates for the meetings can be emailed.
- Mayors Committee; This happens monthly on the 2nd Monday (with the next one happening on Mon 14 August). This is a meeting form 7pm on these days which discuss about the mayors fund and raising money for it. The mayors fund offers up to £500 grants for community projects, or even as a smaller scale “Make a Wish” thing to reward some families who do a lot for the local community.
AOB (The Youth Councillor who runs the meeting, heads up the organisation and has the casting vote. Or something to sit on but probably the first one on our site :-) More)
Penelope mentioned that a student from her school who was part of an organisation called “Yuvanis” approached her and asked if they could come to an Oldham Youth Council meeting and seek assistance. They are set in the Chadderton library, serve the Oldham and Shaw BAME community and includes young people, and are currently doing youth research, which is currently involving planning research on the Bangladeshi community, their heritage, their neighbourhoods and their culture. Most youth councillors agreed to allow them to come along to a meeting, with Penelope speaking to them and arranging possible dates from September that they can come to a meeting.
Dayna mentioned that during the summer activities, there is a swap shop for clothes, and that anyone can come to the swap shop. The idea is for young people to give any of their unused outerwear clothes and take any that they want, with any excess clothes being given to charities or refugees. It is requested that the clothes are fully clean, and that young people make their parents, guardians or carers aware that they are doing this before they chose to donate any clothes. This is open to anyone part of the Oldham Youth Family.
Chris noted that the charity 42nd Street who are based in Manchester are looking for young people, aged 16-25, in Greater Manchester, to consult about mental health and wellbeing issues. This Consultation is when members of an organisation gather information/feedback from members of the public or group on a project or scheme. More is open to anyone who falls in the aged category, regardless of if they have any diagnosis. Although the consultations are held in private in Manchester, they agreed that they will come to Oldham and do a group Consultation is when members of an organisation gather information/feedback from members of the public or group on a project or scheme. More for youth councillors if they chose to attend. Young people can answer any question they are comfortable to answer, and there is a £25 gift voucher available for participants.
Chris also noted that Oldham’s Participation Boards need more representation. Currently it is formed of 3 boards; a health and wellbeing board, a community board and an economy board, with some of these boards, especially the health and wellbeing board, linking to our current campaigns. We currently have 2 young people on the economy board, but the other participation boards are more than happy to have youth councillors onboard. Youth councillors agreed that this was a good idea, and that the wellbeings officer should be allowed on the health and wellbeing board, and the inclusivity officer on the community board, however additional representatives are also required, with it being optimal to have 2 people on each board.
The meeting frequencies depend on the board, with it being known that the health and wellbeing board meet every month and the economy board meeting every 6 weeks, and it being held face to face. However, the meetings usually occur during school time.
It was also noted that the youth council may have a large influence on the community board.