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EACEA National Policies Platform


5. Participation

5.10 Current debates and reforms

Last update: 22 January 2021

LAST MODIFIED ON: 11/11/2020 - 00:34


Lowering the voting age 

Periodically, the subject of lowering the voting age has been discussed. Votes at 16 is an organisation that campaigns for the lowering of the voting age. The British Youth Council also campaigns for the voting age to be changed to 16. 

In June 2020, the House of Commons released a research briefing that gives details of the calls to change the law. You can read the report here

Civic Engagement and Social Action Survey

The results of the Civic Engagement and Social Action Community Life Survey 2019/20 were published in July 2020. The survey looks at civic participation, activism and consultation, as well as asking questions about how participants feel about levels of involvement in local decisions. The survey found the age groups 16-24 and 25-34 were less likely (15% and 17%) to have engaged in civic consultation than the age groups between 35 and 74 years old (23-25%). 

This survey is conducted as part of the Civil Society Strategy to research the ambitions of government to create opportunities for people to change their own lives and the world around them. This could be involving citizens in local decision-making using participatory democracy, or in the design of public service delivery. Responses as a result to the survey have not yet been released.