Sydney: In one of the largest and most comprehensive consultations ever conducted in Australia – four thousand children and young people across NSW have talked about their life experiences and what is important to them.
The consultations found the biggest issue for children and young people, aged four to 24, regardless of location, age, ethnicity or gender is education. While the majority of young people think education in NSW is working well, 67 per cent of those surveyed said it should be a top priority of the NSW Government.
The findings of these extensive consultations are being formally released today by the NSW Advocate for Children and Young People (ACYP), Andrew Johnson.
“I have personally been involved in two thousand consultations and I can tell you that young people across the state are keen to have a voice and to have the Government take their concerns into consideration,” said the NSW Advocate for Children and Young People.
The findings from these extensive consultations will form the basis of the first legislated Strategic Plan for Children and Young People in NSW which is due to be launched later this year.
Young people also counted transport (23 per cent), employment (23 per cent), health care (18 per cent) and mental health support and awareness (17 per cent) as priority areas for the NSW Government.
Areas that are working well according to young people are education (72 per cent), access to sports and social activities (49 per cent), transport (32 per cent), access to sport fields, facilities and parks (27 per cent) and health care (23 per cent).
“While young people in NSW are positive about key areas of society such as education, health and transport, they still see room for improvement,” said Mr Johnson.
“This focus on access to public services aligns with the fact that children and young people consider respect and equality to be the qualities of a good society.”
51 per cent of young people rated respect as the most important quality of a good society, followed by equality (39 per cent), safety (38 per cent), supportive environments (31 per cent), and inclusion (23 per cent).
“Today’s young people aren’t that concerned with themselves – they want to see everyone in society getting a fair go.”