The City of Helsinki will launch an experiment testing youth participation and right to speak at the meetings of the four divisional committees of the City. The groundwork for the experiment will be laid out during the autumn season on the basis of experiences gathered from other cities in similar operation and in cooperation with the Helsinki Youth Council. According to the Helsinki City Strategy, every Helsinki resident has the right to act for the benefit of their community.
“We build a better Helsinki together. This experiment seeks to produce new information on how to strengthen youth participation in decision-making,” says Helsinki Mayor Jan Vapaavuori.
The actual experiment will be launched at the beginning of 2019 and run through the first half of the year.
The Helsinki Youth Council seeks to make the voices of young people better heard in Helsinki. The Youth Council’s mission is also to support youth participation. Further, the Youth Council seeks to strengthen the impact of youth action in the city as well as in the planning, execution and monitoring of the operations of the City of Helsinki divisions.
The committee experiment was proposed to the City by the Youth Council Chair Jim Koskinen, Vice Chair Kaapo Haapanen and members Evi Koivunen and Kasper Rautalinko.
“The Youth Council should be present where decisions are made. We will now be able to exert a more tangible influence in Helsinki,” says Rautalinko on behalf of the Helsinki Youth Council working group.
Helsinki seeks to keep every young person aboard
The goal of the Helsinki City Strategy is to keep every young person aboard. Helsinki will also strengthen its international role as a pioneer in participation and transparency. The City promotes a dialogue between all parties and activates the more vulnerable citizens to participate.
The Helsinki Youth Council is a participation body for young people required by the Municipal Act. The 30 members of the Youth Council are elected in annual elections. Every 13- to -17-year-old Helsinki resident is entitled to vote.
Candidates for the 2019 Youth Council should register their candidacy by 7 October at ruutivaalit.munstadi.fi (note that the page is in Finnish and Swedish only). The elections are held on 12–30 November.
Youth Council (formerly known as Ruuti Core Group)
Youth Council elections (in Finnish and Swedish)