Ballymoney’s Lauren takes policies to UK Youth Parliament

A Ballymoney teenager has taken part in a sitting of the UK Youth Parliament and had one of her policies passed with an impressive 93% support.

15-year-old Lauren Bond is the Youth MP for the North Antrim constituency and travelled to Hull recently to attend the parliament conference to vote on the policies that form the Youth Parliament’s national campaign.

Hundreds of Youth MPs from Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland came together to vote for change and to ensure that the voices of the young people they represent were heard.

Dalriada pupil Lauren said: “The weekend consisted of voting on policies related to a variety of topics, from mental health to current issues such as cost of living. It was an honour to present my policy on Mandatory Autism Training and Teaching across the UK, which I’m pleased to announce passed by an amazing 93%.

Lauren addressing the UK Youth Parliament

“Policy motions were discussed and debated and so it was an amazing opportunity to voice my opinion and the opinions of those who I represent. I was also incredibly fortunate to present my policy on making the teaching of Northern Ireland History mandatory across the UK, which also passed with 73% of Youth MPs agreeing. I now have two active campaigns that I can’t wait to get to work on.”

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“The highlight of the weekend was representing Northern Ireland and serving as a voice for North Antrim at a national event,” added Lauren.

“It was incredible to discuss and compare issues facing young people with other Youth MPs from across the UK. I have one more policy on disability first aid that I hope to find the results of in the coming days. I can’t wait to start campaigning over the next two years to deliver meaningful change for young people.

Lauren addressing the UK Youth Parliament

“I’ve enjoyed meeting with various organisations this year and continue to meet with MLAs to discuss my campaigns. I’ve been honoured to be invited to many events, hustings and meetings this year and am excited for the opportunities to come.”

Lauren is also a member of the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly and is currently International Officer for Secondary Students’ Union, Northern Ireland.

Lauren Bond (front, second from right) with other members of the Youth Parliament