YOUNG people from across Tameside have highlighted the importance of youth services, as part of a national lobby of Parliament.
Ten young residents from Tameside met with Stalybridge and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds and with Ashton MP David Heyes to talk about the role of youth provision across Tameside.
They highlighted the support offered to young people through the council, whether it be enabling participation in schemes like the Duke of Edinburgh awards and or offering information and support to those who may feel uncertain or vulnerable.
In some parts of the country services for young people are already under threat or have closed, as a result of council budget cuts.
And the young people from Tameside travelled to London as part of the national Choose Youth lobby, to draw attention to the issue.
After meeting with the young people MP Jonathan Reynolds said: “In some cases young people can be the most vulnerable people in our society – and the support they receive at this age can make a difference to the rest of their lives.
“The group of young people who came to see me made a strong case for services for young people to continue – and I wouldn’t disagree.
“In Tameside there are teams of youth workers who work tirelessly with young people and who are determined to help young people make positive decisions. Without doubt, they do a valuable job
“However it would be wrong not acknowledge that the cuts being imposed by the Government are making it increasingly difficult for some councils to continue with the provision they have offered in the past.
“I hope youth services across Tameside will continue to be as broad and as well-delivered as they currently are – but inevitably that will depend to some degree on the levels of funding awarded to councils by the government.
“These young people made a strong case – and should the council face any tough decisions in this area I am sure they will be listened to.”
Choose Youth is an alliance of 30 national youth sector organisations and trade unions, committed to ensuring that central and local government protect young people’s services; preserve the right of young people to a universal open access youth service; and support young people’s services as a cost effective way to change young people’s lives.
More information about Choose Youth can be found at www.chooseyouth.org