Young people should be more involved with decision-making, says councillor

Staff ~ The Truro Daily News
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TRURO - The younger generation needs to become more involved in the decision-making of their communities, says a town councillor.
Greg MacArthur said it is a problem across the country where the next generation does not come out in large numbers to public meetings.
"The problem in a lot of situations in politics, in general, is the younger generation has to get out and vote," he said. "If they don't show up ... they make it sound like they're not interested."
MacArthur said Tuesday's meeting regarding the TreeGo proposal for Victoria Park had a smaller turnout of the younger generation. The councillor said it is important everybody voice their thoughts on the issue.
Town council could make a decision on the proposed park at its March 1 meeting.

Organizations: Town council

Geographic location: Victoria Park

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Recent comments

  • Randy
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I remember a group of us in 90/91 or so going to the town council with the idea of building a skatepark in truro, At the time fall river and bedford had them.

    They basically laughed at us and told us that it was all a fad and to stay off the public streets.

    That day turned me off on thinking any politician was there to help you..

    20 years later, Truro finally got a skatepark.

    I wonder if they would take any of the younger generation seriously today or not..I highly doubt it

  • L
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I agree wholeheartedly with Scott from Nova Scotia. I am also a member of the younger generation, and having studied political science in school, I understand exactly where he is coming from. People need to understand that this younger generation is not generation X that was cynical about the whole political process for the reasons Randy from Truro cited. They were laughed at and told they didn't know anything when they voiced their opinions and tried to include their way of life in the status quo. My generation has started to recover from that cynicism and the general sentiment is hopeful. We want to do good things, we want to be heard, we want to reach out and get involved. But if you've ever been around politics (in this province or anywhere) you'll understand that it is very much so an insider's game. You have to already be in that political circle with the people who have been in elected office for the past 15+ years to have any idea what is going on.
    If those elected officials think we need to be more involved then they need to reach out to their community online, door to door, in mail outs, etc. We are here just waiting for our opportunity, but we are using different mechanisms as a way to be involved. I believe that if the protest Truro saw when Prime Minister Stephen Harper was in town had been organized by the younger generation using online social networking there would have been a more impressive showing. In fact this is would be true for any issue that may arise, please refrain from calling us naysayers. Take a look at Facebook groups organizing for change in all areas, there is an untapped resource there, we have the power to organize and act faster than ever. That being said, if those in power want us to bear the torch in the future, they will have to let us in on the process and gain experience.
    So how do we break in? By not giving up until our voices are heard. On a final note, I don't believe there has been enough consultation with the public on the TreeGo proposal, it is, afterall, everyone's park. It is a cherished part of this town, and province, I urge everyone to get involved and protect this oasis in town for future generations. We dont need to change an agreement made over a hundred years ago to make a quick buck. These types of sites will be lost forever if we continue to develop.

  • Greg
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    It was was great to see the amount of young people show up the other night for a meeting to get information on Tree-Go. Note by just sending in a petition that you support something and not showing up for the actual meeting, leaves your views to be missed by the people at the meeting and the press. An example is yesterday's Truro Daily News, the reporter who wrote the story failed to let the her readers know that there was a petition with over 150 names on it. Now as far as she was concerned, those names didn't count or she missed that part of the meeting. She stated that the consensus at the meeting was more against. You do the math, the 40 % that were there who were for it and you take the over 150 names on a petition if taken into account by her, would have changed the head line for her story. This is just one example of being at a meeting counting more then the petition you sent in. Note: It was expressed from the more aged (including myself)population, how great it was for the younger men and women there to step up and be heard, for or against, didn't matter you were heard. Young and old we will all work together, it's the Canadian Way.

  • honkaw
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    It is true that the young people need to be more involved in the decisions being made BUT will their concerns and wants be taken seriously by the
    powers that make the final decisions, or
    Will their opinions be simply ignored as we pay the taxes and we say no.
    No wonder more and more of our young people are leaving for other parts of the country and will not return until they are ready to retire.
    Truro council get your head out of the sand and look to what is in the best interest of the community as a hole and not to what is in your best interest in getting re-elected in the next election.
    Maybe, just maybe, the young people will get out and vote you.

  • dave
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    young people - do yourselves a favour and don't depend on the government (all levels) for anything. they will take away your individuality, freedom and money - and tell you it's for your own good.

  • Scott
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    As a member of the younger generation, I have heard this same thing over and over again and frankly I am tired of hearing it.

    I would have loved to attend the council meeting the other night but I hadn't heard anything about it until after the fact. Is this my fault or is it the case that our elected and paid representatives are not doing enough to get out and talk to the people who elected them? I would suggest the latter is true.

    When was the last time an elected member of the council went into a local school and spoke to students and invited them to attend a council meeting? When was the last time a council member went door to door to talk to people aside from during a campaign? Is this not what you are paid to do?

    I believe that the younger generation is far more active than any generation before. The problem, however, is that our old and archaic political institutions and their office holders have not caught up with the mediums used by the younger generation. They are speaking different languages.

    Until a real effort is made to bring more young people into the decision-making process, I think that articles like this are unfair.