This year, I'm taking part in the Raise Our Voice Australia campaign, giving young people the chance to speak up in Parliament. I asked young people across the Coast to write a short speech about what they want Australia to look like in 20 years and I received some fantastic responses.
Sarah Baric, 20
I would like to see equal rights being upheld for Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander Peoples in 20 years. The Indigenous Youth suicide rate is more then double the rate of non-Indigenous Youth, Indigenous Australians are more likely to be incarcerated and Our First Nations People’s are experiencing higher rates of mental health concerns. These are just a few things to help paint the picture of the inequality our Indigenous Population experience. I would like to see the government change this. While vital steps are being taken to change this picture, there is not enough focus. We need more Indigenous voices in parliament. In the picture of Australia in 20 years, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People’s will have equality.
Jayden Delbridge, 16
Mr Speaker in 20 years, we have new world leaders, new values, new beliefs, but one of the biggest changes is our shift in respect for those who we leave, who become the generation of tomorrow.
In 2040, we live in a world we have more information at our fingertips than ever before. We live in a world where technology has become one of the biggest components of our life. What does this mean?
It means, finally, we value the opinions of our future generations; the generations that will inhabit the earth when we move on. The generation that world leaders now respect and seek advice from. The generation of tomorrow are listened to, respected, appreciated. Their unique insights prove invaluable to shaping our tomorrow. Our future generation reminds us why we serve in this place.
Whilst in 20 years, many of us will say our last goodbyes, we leave our society, our nation, our world in a better place for those who say their first hellos.