Minimum voting age

The elections watchdog has said that the minimum voting age should remain at 18, while recommending lowering the minimum age for Westminster candidate from 21 to 18.

I know that it is popular to campaign for the reduction in the minimum voting age to 16, but I remain unconvinced. My recent experience from attending youth events here, and evidence presented by the Children’s Commissioner in Northern Ireland, says that this is NOT a burning issue for 16 and 17 year olds. Instead, they are more concerned about everyday issues that affect them particularly, e.g.:

  • Sexual Health
  • Crime
  • Sport
  • Racism
  • Drugs and Alcohol
  • Death Driving (Joy Driving)
  • Prejudice Awareness
  • Equality/Diversity
  • Political and Cultural Understanding

I would support the reduction of the minimum age to stand for parliament to 18. What reasons are there to have a different minimum age for standing? Is it not for the electorate to decide whether they want to elect a 18-20 year old?

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