Young people are to be given a meaningful role in determining the future direction of Greater Manchester through the new Greater Manchester Youth Combined Authority, after proposals were approved on Friday 29th September.
Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham launched the initiative at the STEM Centre on Talbot Rd. The Mayor, alongside Councillors Sean Anstee and Rishi Shori, held a roundtable discussion with around 20 young people including Trafford College students. He commented, “Young people are at the heart of my plans for Greater Manchester. We have already delivered half priced bus tickets, half price Metrolink travel for 16 to 18 year olds will start in January next year and we are underway with plans to ensure quality traineeships and apprenticeships through a UCAS-style application system.
“The new Youth Combined Authority will help us create a city-region that works for all young people. This group can make a real difference by developing new policies that can improve the lives of young people. I want the Youth Combined Authority to go out to Greater Manchester’s young people and tell me how we can improve our city-region, then we will make it happen together.
“Our new Youth Combined Authority sends a clear sign that we believe in the potential of Greater Manchester’s next generation to shape their own future.”
The new Youth Combined Authority will be a gender balanced group made up of 40 individuals aged between 11 and 18. It will include members of all 10 existing youth councils and representatives from youth groups across the city-region, with members serving a two year term.
The group will also undertake specific pieces of work, developing real policies for Greater Manchester that will improve the lives of young people. The Youth Combined Authority will be tasked with taking forward the Mayor’s plans for a free travel pass, developing it in to a ‘Greater Manchester Opportunity Pass’ that could open up access to leisure, sporting and cultural activities as well as work placements and apprenticeships. The group will also be asked to help develop the Mayor’s plans for a Curriculum for Life.
The body will advise the Mayor and GMCA on key issues affecting young people and scrutinise the work of Greater Manchester Leaders.
Councillor Rishi Shori, GMCA portfolio lead for Young People and Social Cohesion put forward proposals for the new Youth Combined Authority to Leaders at Friday’s GMCA meeting.
Cllr Shori said: “To make sure that Greater Manchester truly works for young people, their voices must be heard. The Greater Manchester Youth Combined Authority can help ensure young people have the opportunities they need to get on in life.
“I look forward to working with our young people as they use this new platform to make Greater Manchester the best place to grow up and get on in life.”