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Participation of young people in political and institutional life

Recommendation 1019 (1985)

Parliamentary Assembly
Assembly debate on 28 September 1985 (14th Sitting) (see Doc. 5462, report of the Committee on Culture and Education). Text adopted by the Assembly on 28 September 1985 (14th Sitting).

The Assembly,

1. Reasserting its belief in democracy and in the institutions and organisations that serve it ;
2. Convinced, if democracy is to survive and develop, of the importance of the active and effective awareness, understanding, participation and commitment of young people in political and institutional life at local, national and European levels ;
3. Recalling its Recommendation 902 (1980) on youth co-operation in Europe ;
4. Reaffirming its view that involvement in participation should begin in the home, and believing that this should extend from the fields of school and out-of-school education, work, social and leisure activity to wider questions of community and political interest ;
5. Stressing the importance of ensuring that young people are properly prepared for political and institutional life, properly informed, and properly provided with means of expressing and communicating their views ;
6. Convinced that in every pluriform society the political parties - without any aim of indoctrination or manipulation - are responsible for introducing young people into the possibilities of active interest and participation in political life ;
7. Believing that the channels that exist in many countries to enable public authorities to consult representatives of young people should be extended with the aim of associating young people more closely in decision-making at local, regional, national and international levels ;
8. Believing that this practice should also apply to European co-operation and be a more general feature of the working methods of the Council of Europe ;
9. Welcoming the fact that the next Strasbourg Conference (1987) is to be devoted to the theme of participation in and education for democracy, and hoping that by the time of that conference, significant progress will have been made ;
10. Welcoming the European Youth Week, at which young people clearly demonstrated their interest in participation, held in Strasbourg from 1 to 6 July 1985, as a major contribution to International Youth Year ;
11. Welcoming also the hearing on youth unemployment held in The Hague on 3 and 4 September 1985, and the central role played by young people and their organisations in that event ;
12. Calling on its committees to make a greater effort to involve youth representatives in the preparation of committee reports ;
13. Asking its Sub-committee on Youth and Sport to examine with the political groups, in co-operation with national parliamentary delegations and representatives of party-political youth organisations, ways of associating young people more closely with the Assembly,
14. Recommends that the Committee of Ministers :
a encourage an effort to involve youth representatives on the part of the steering committees conducting the intergovernmental work programme of the Council of Europe ;
b provide the resources necessary for the proper consultation of young people and for the participation, where applicable, of youth representatives in the course of activities conducted by the Council of Europe ;
c pay particular attention, in follow-up of the Council for Cultural Co-operation proposals on preparation for life, to the practical preparation of young people for political and institutional activity ;
d encourage wider consultation of youth representatives at national level and, through the Standing Conference of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe, at local and regional levels ;
e make greater progress towards the implementation of recommendations resulting from European co-operation, so as to reassure young people of the value of the ideals inspiring such cooperation ;
f associate member governments with this action ;
15. Counts on the continuing support and commitment of the European Youth Centre and European Youth Foundation in the realisation of these objectives.