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Monthly Archives: May 2012

I’ve written a survey on sex and relationships education. https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/L3CKG67. It takes maybe three or four minutes to fill out. If you’ve got the time, give it a try? Your voice gets heard, I get a more credible survey, we all win.

I’m running a campaign on sex and relationships education with the British Youth Council. The exact focus of the campaign will depend on what the people who fill in the survey say they want. What I want to work on is making more aspects of sex and relationships education statutory, so that schools have to teach them.

Right now, all the law says schools have to teach about is puberty (at primary school) and STIs and HIV/AIDs (at secondary school). I’ve suggested some things that schools might be required to teach

–          Different types of contraception and protection

–          Safe-sex for same-sex couples

–          Warning signs of an abusive or violent relationship and how to get help

–          What the law says about rape and sexual assault – how to report to the police or get other help

–          Building a relationship and communicating with your partner

–          The responsibilities of becoming a parent.

I don’t know which of these I’ll be campaigning for, but whichever it is, I’ll be wired. And if the people who fill in this survey all come up with some other idea, and it’s popular without me suggesting it? Then I’ll look at campaigning for that, too. I almost want that to happen, I like grass-roots campaigning, I like letting people have a real voice in what happens.

So, thank you for your time, if you’ve filled out the survey. If not, please give it a try?

I’ll be posting the results, and details of the campaign, up here as soon as I have them.

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When I decided to post this, a couple of people who asked me why I’d post a free-running video on a youth politics website.

It feels right to me. So. Reasons…

a)      Free running is active, it’s healthy, and it’s free. Of course youth organisations should be promoting it.

b)      This is about youth voice, and expression. Free-running isn’t just sport, it’s creative. Especially if you include the process of recording and editing it.

c)       This is about celebrating young people’s talents and achievements. I don’t know that that is a part of our mission, but it feels reasonable to me.

So, the election is the day after tomorrow, Thursday the 3rd of May. I was originally going to give you all some information on Jenny Jones and Siobhan Benita in this post. But, I’m out of time. Sorry. Jenny Jones’s website is here and Siobhan Benita’s is here.

Who to vote for…

If you’re still not sure who to vote for, I’d recommend http://www.votematch.org.uk/
You answer some questions about what you believe, and what is important to you (it takes about 5mins). Then it will tell you which candidates you agree with most.

How to vote…

You should have had a “polling card” by post already. This tells you where to go to vote. If you haven’t had one, you might not be registered. Or, you might have forgotten about it, or someone else might have opened and binned or moved it. You can contact your local electoral office here to find out if you’re registered. You do not need your polling card to vote.

Polling stations (the place where you go to vote) will be open from 7am – 10pm, so you can go before or after work, school, or college. You go in to the polling station. You go up to the desk, and give them your name and address. They’ll check you’re registered, then give you your ballot papers (the pieces of paper you vote with). All polling stations should be accessible, and have ballot papers available for blind and partially sighted voters. If you need any help on the day, you can ask at the polling station – it’s their job to help.

For the London Mayoral Elections, you will be voting for three different things

1)      You’ll be voting for the Mayor. You do this on the pink ballot paper. You can cast two votes. In the first column, you put an X next to your 1st choice. In the 2nd column you put an X next to your 2nd choice.
First they’ll count everyone’s first choices. If someone has more than half of the vote, they’ve won. If not, everyone except the two people with most votes (Probably Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone) will be taken out. If you voted for a candidate who’s now out of the election, your second choice is given your vote. Whichever candidate now has most votes wins.

2)      You’ll be voting for your local London Assembly Member. You do this on the yellow ballot paper. The London Assembly represents you to the mayor. Your Local London Assembly Member is a bit like your MP. You put an X next to candidate you want.

3)      You’ll be voting for the London-wide Members of the London Assembly. You do this with the orange ballot paper. You put an X next to the party you want to win. The parties who win more than 5% of the vote share the eleven places depending on how many votes they get. (So if the Conservatives get 40% of the London-wide assembly votes, they’ll get four out of the eleven London-wide places)