Civic Centre, West Street, Oldham. OL1 1UT
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OYC Meeting Minutes – 18/10/2023

[1]: Welcome & Apologies (lead by Chair) [2]: Domestic Abuse Blog & The “Me, Myself & I” Event (lead by Catherine Lawler) [3*]: Break [4]: Vaping Pack (lead by Chair) [5]: Events and Trips (lead by Chris) [6]: AOB (lead by Chair)

OYC Meeting Minutes – 18/10/2023


Catherine introduced herself and what her job consists of. Her focus is on domestic abuse, training adults and making people aware. She outlined what she will go through in the session and how we can get involved in a possible event/events in Oldham.

She asked if anyone knew what the “White Ribbon” is about. A couple of members contributed with what they thought it was. Catherine agreed and added bits. It’s mainly about raising awareness and helping victims of domestic abuse. She added her personal background that she’s experienced and that we shouldn’t tell people to leave or get out of theses situations. Her aim is to get young people to understand how to recognise it and where they can go for help or where they can direct their friends for help.

She explained that the 25th of November is a campaign day and takes place every year. She said there’s a period of time where they run session for training and awareness. She added that young people can contribute well with points adults might miss.

She asked if there’s a need for it, and members replied that there is since it affects everyone. She explained that the law is about domestic abuse in a family. But she added there is a rise of abuse in the community, from strangers, not people that are in a family or that are known to the victims.

9/10 perpetrators of domestic abuse are men, very important to make sure its not a blanket statement about men as a whole, she added that White Ribbon is led by men and that its males calling out violence by men. Catherine also mentioned that men that don’t agree with domestic abuse are women’s ‘best friends’.

She referenced that she attends footballs game and that if it ever kicks off, it very rare that the perpatrators are women, the same with pub fights, street crime, knife crime. She said there’s men at a risk to women but also a risk to other men. She said that the statistics where men are victims of domestic abuse are often same sex relationships, so the abuse is from another man.

She said the campaign started in Canada when a man went around a college campus shooting women because he was misogynistic.

She asked what behaviours of street abuse there is. Members contributed, pervy staring, cat calling, wolf whistling, sexual assault, unwanted comments.

Catherine gave a scenario she was in recently. On the way to the hairdressers she was accosted by 2 men and although she considers herself feisty she was frightened.

She presented a PowerPoint slide which explained 4 types of DA, physical, emotional, sexual, digital and what they can contain, members contributed different examples. She also mentioned coercive control and that it builds up slowly over a period of time.

The “#ChangeTheStory” is a well-known hashtag used with this campaign.

Catherine explained that schools in the UK are the place people are most likely to be sexual assaulted or harassed. She asked if anyone experiences it, couple of members said they have witnessed it. 92% of girls at schools or college report to have had sexual comments made. 75% say they have been pressured to send nudes or sexual images. 1 in 3 said that they have been sexually assaulted in schools.

Catherine explained what allyship is, and she said although lads might not be subject to domestic abuse, she said you can call it out or challenge it if you see it but also said it needs to be done safely so there is no threat to them calling out.

She mentioned that men are ambassadors and women are champions. Men take lead on it, and she made 3 points:

  1. Wear a white ribbon
  2. Keep learning and engaging
  3. Call it out safe and able

Catherine explained what will happen at the conference at the end of November and the different activities/workshops taking place.

Catherine said OYC can take part and attend on the day.

2 things she wants us to do.

  1. A blog about violence against women and girls, and the outcome of the conference.
  2. Going to have a truth booth so young people could design it.

She said any other ideas are welcome.

Chris asked who wants to write the blog and names were collected. He then asked who wants to be an ambassador and names were collected. The same with champions.


Isaac explained these are the posters that went out to schools.

Groups tasked with criticising the posters and how they can be improved, what would we do differently and what would we create to go along with the resources.

After half an hour of group work. Everyone fed back with ideas of how the posters could be improved, and what they would like to see the posters include. Some very good points about including more statistics, changing the message slightly, cut down on words, keep brief throughout, think about colour scheme, talk about the cost and addiction, talk about ways to quit or not start.

Videos were then shown by Chris to members, and he asked for constructive criticism and feedback.  The video explained different areas of vaping. Members then gave their feedback and suggested improvements, needs young people to speak, needs to be more engaging, show real people. There was also some good feedback.

3 more videos were shown, and feedback was given, much better feedback for these. They also match up with PowerPoints, that have different topics and notes for teachers to help them engage with students such as asking questions.

Members gave ideas of how they would improve the resources. Such as include facts and figures for Oldham e.g. the students from Saddleworth school who were hospitalised, what impacts it can have on your future, how to deal with it differently to the main methods. Voted to remove the environmental info and add ways of dealing with stress and anxiety etc.


Chris mentioned the Tobacco Alliance meetings, and there are some ideas being put forward to government around vaping, e.g. not appealing flavours such as candyfloss, no bright colours, not attractive to young people, not free advertising.

He also mentioned that legislation looking to be brought in will prevent a 14 year old today ever being allowed to legally buy a cigarette. Disposable vapes will be banned, only able to buy rechargeable ones.

Youth council will look at consultation to get peoples views.


  • Wednesday the 25th of October 2023 – Priorities Meeting (a large attendance is required)
  • Friday the 27th of October 2023 – Bee Heard Network Development Day (includes Chill Factor and a meal)
  • Thursday the 16th of November 2023 – Overview and Scrutiny (need 2 people)
  • Saturday the 25th of November 2023 – Net Zero Conference at the University of Salford (lunch included, 10am to 4pm)
  • Wednesday the 29th of November 2023 – White Ribbon conference at the Oldham Civic Centre


Andrew – spoke about getting involved and to be respectful during meetings, not to be talking and having general conversations or be on Snapchat, Facebook etc. He also requested that people do not talk whilst others are.

Chris – Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council (OMBC) communications team want to do awareness around CSE. They need a group of young people to speak to the communications officer about how to do this. There will most likely be an online meeting on a Tuesday evening. The main points are how to advise friends to look out for it etc.

Chris – noticed that everything moved online during COVID, and when it comes to e-safety its out of date. Chris and Craig Harris from Oldham Theatre Workshop (OTW) have spoken and think it would be good to do things around e-safety. Such as gambling. They want young people to come together to discuss how apps work and how they can be used safely. How to advise others on how to be responsible and safe and how to properly use apps. Need young people to work with staff to create resources for schools. Chris collected names of people who are interested in helping.

Chris – over past few weeks, young people have been brandishing BB guns. OMBC communications team want help on how to raise awareness of the serious nature of this. They want to put material out warning about the implications of carrying or brandishing a BB gun. Names of those who want to help were taken.