Director of Youth, Cleviston Hunte presenting Ashley Alkins with a pin during the installation ceremony of the 2016 Youth Parliamentarians in the House of Assembly today. (C.Pitt/BGIS)
The newly-installed members of the Barbados National Youth Parliament (BNYP) have been encouraged to be even more vocal when examining the current issues facing the society.
This charge came from Minister with responsibility for Youth, Stephen Lashley, as he delivered the feature address at the installation of the 2016 Youth Parliamentarians in the House of Assembly this morning.
Mr. Lashley pointed out that the young parliamentarians must speak out against more than just the “chocolate coated” issues. Referring to a recently-publicised threat on social media, he encouraged the group to make its voice heard on such matters.
“I’m yet to hear a youth leader [or] a youth champion coming out to denounce this latest threat. You cannot be silent! The task of leadership requires you to be vocal on the issues that may be bothersome. Speak out against the issues!” he insisted.
Mr. Lashley also underscored the need for the newly-installed members of the BNYP to find ways in which they could transform their vocal opinions and beliefs into more practical and focused strategies.
“Being a youth parliamentarian is not only about making noise, and very soon you will recognise it is also about creating the kind of synergies and the action that are necessary to be able to make change,” he noted.
Deeming the BNYP a “huge success”, Mr. Lashley shared his belief that the Youth Parliament would continue to empower and provide young people with a platform to discuss the issues that impact the youth.
The BNYP is one of the action plans outlined in the National Youth Policy of Barbados.