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Christchurch City Council Media Release Tuesday 9 March 1999

Youth Issues To Go To The United Nations

Issues and comments from the ‘Global Voice Youth Summit’, to be held in Christchurch later this month, are to be compiled for a report to the United Nations.

In 1993 New Zealand ratified the United Nations Convention on the rights of the Child. As a result the New Zealand government is required to report back to the United Nations on specific issues concerning children and youth in this country. Along with the official report the United Nations is also very keen to hear the views of young New Zealanders. The Christchurch ‘Global Voice Youth Summit’ will be part of the United Nations Global Youth consultation and will seek the views of Christchurch’s young people. Information from Global Voice will be presented to the United Nations in Geneva in year 2000.

"As far as we know, Christchurch is the only city in New Zealand to be providing any report in response to the convention. We are actively seeking the views of Christchurch’s young people and we’re really excited to be involved in providing feedback to the United Nations", says Robyn Moore, Youth Advocate, Christchurch City Council.

The Global Voice Youth Summit, a full day workshop to discuss various youth issues, is to be held on 26 March at the Riccarton Park Function Centre, with approximately 300 young people from Christchurch participating.

"Our purpose is to raise awareness of the convention - that young people in New Zealand, and all over the world, have rights under that convention, and to discuss what those rights mean", says Robyn Moore.

The subjects to be covered in the workshops, all taken from the convention, include:

Media censorship/sexual exploitation of young people

Issues for Pacific Islanders living in New Zealand

Different legal age limits for different activities

Discrimination against disabled young people

Poverty issues

Schools in New Zealand

Health issues for young people

‘New’ New Zealanders – refugees, migrants and overseas students

(For a full list of the 16 workshops, see brochure)

All media are invited to attend ‘Global Voice’ – if you would like to please RSVP to Carol Soundy, phone 371-1949.

Dr Alison Blakelock from Children in Action in Aotearoa will present the report to the United Nations on behalf of the city. The Council is also hoping to send a young person from the ‘Global Voice Youth Summit’ to participate in the Geneva feedback.

Robyn Moore and two ‘Global Voice’ participants will also present the details from the summit workshops at the ‘Children’s Rights – National and International Perspectives’ conference in Dunedin in July this year.

The summit has been funded by the Christchurch City Council Advocacy Team, with support from the Anglican Diocese, Canterbury Youth Workers Collective, 4YP, YMCA, Crown Public Health, Community Law Centre, Manuka Cottage, Christchurch Youth Council, and Children in Action in Aotearoa.

For further information:

Robyn Moore, Youth Advocate, Christchurch City Council

Phone 372-2406

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