Lack of political engagement directed to youth issues cause frustration
Both Jon Liedtke, a local reporter, and Dan Brown, coordinator of YKNOT, are publicly expressing frustration regarding a lack of engagement from local politicians.
WireService.ca Media Release (01/29/2015) Windsor, ON –
Liedtke has been seeking to speak with Mayor Dilkens since Oct. 28, the day after the election. Similarly, Brown put in requests to meet with local MPs and MPPs on behalf of YKNOT, but was unable to schedule time to discuss issues affecting youth in Windsor.
On January 29, both Liedtke and Brown took to social media to express their frustration: in Liedtke’s case towards the mayor, and in Brown’s directed towards MPs and MPPs.
“In election campaigns candidates routinely pledge to engage and actively work to improve the lives of young professionals and the social media generation. Unfortunately after campaigns, sometimes priorities change,” says Liedtke. “While I understand politicians are busy, have extensive portfolios and in the case of Mayor Dilkens, have to run a city, they need to also understand youth are part of the political process.”
Earlier this month following up on the Windsor Star’s GONE series, Yvonne Pilon, CEO of WEtech Alliance, Dan Brown, coordinators of YKnot, Matt Marchand, president and CEO of the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce, and the presidents of St. Clair College and the University of Windsor took part in a panel discussion about youth retention.
Following up from that event, a Part 2 to the Windsor Gone forum will be held at the Windsor Star News Cafe on February 19, 2015. YKNOT is looking for local politicians and stakeholder to take part.
“We’re beginning to plan the second part of the Windsor Gone Forum webcast, and inviting our regional leaders and stakeholders to participate,” says Brown. “We’re looking for young adults too. Young people are invited to join and speak about their successes and difficulties becoming successful in our region.”
Additionally, local youth are invited to take part in the forum, and/or to participate through asking questions at the event or via social media.
The Social Media generation actively receives their news and information about their city from non-traditional sources. When politicians limit their media strategies to traditional media, they actively limit their audience, while at the same time, potentially increasing a level of voter apathy among youth.
On October 15, 2014, Brown and Liedtke coordinated #VOTENOWVOTETHEN, a mayoral debate for the social media generation. Over 200 attended the event, and hundreds more took part via social media.
“The number of participants who took part in the mayoral debate, and the engagement demonstrated at Councillors Bortolin and Holt’s CJAM town hall at Phog demonstrate the social media generation is both extremely interested in politics and willing to take part,” said Liedtke.
It should be noted that MP Brian Masse’s office immediately reached out to Brown upon seeing his Tweet.
For more information, please contact:
Dan Brown, YKNOT (for questions or to take part in the 2nd forum)