extended to the young?
During Local Democracy Week, the council is polling residents on its website
lowered to 16, and should younger people be eligible for election as a
councillor or MP? (the current minimum age is 21) Visit to cast your vote.
The council is also running a competition, through schools, for 13-19-year-
olds. Posing the question: 'What would you change in Westminster if you
were a councillor?' the council hopes to receive some interesting and
thought-provoking answers. Teachers will make time to explain to students
how local democracy works and what the council does.
One winner from each secondary school in Westminster will have an
opportunity to question the leader, Simon Milton, and leader of the
opposition, Simon Stockill, over lunch at City Hall, before an afternoon
tour of the state-of-the-art CCTV centre in the Trocadero. Each winner will
also receive two free tickets to the Odeon, Leicester Square, courtesy of the management.
Graham Ellis, director of policy and communications, said:'Local Democracy
Week has arrived at the right time. Debates are raging in the newspapers about council tax, schools, regional assemblies and central government intervention
in local government issues.
'Now is a good time to ask whether the voting age should be lowered to 16.
At that age, young people can work and pay their taxes - is this a good
argument for extending them the right to vote?
'Lowering the voting age to 16 for local elections would introduce people to
the democratic process two years before they became eligible to vote for the