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Crowe calls on young people to exercise their right to vote

13 May, 2007

Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South West Sean Crowe said that 'In government Sinn Féin would guarantee that all elections would be held on a weekend to maximise the turnout of young people and the party will lower the voting age to 16.'

Speaking at the launch Mr. Crowe said, "More than one third of our candidates in this election are under 35 and we are confident that we will return a number of young TDs to Leinster House. Today we are launching our youth platform. This was produced by young people for young people and it sets out very clear priorities around difficult issues such as the number of young people who die on our roads every day and as a result of suicide. It deals with everyday issues such as health, education, car insurance and anti-social behaviour and with national and global issues such as Irish re-unification and the war in Iraq.

"It is very easy for young people to be cynical about politics, it is easy for a young person to think 'this election has nothing to do with me'. And this situation is not helped by the fact that the outgoing government has decided to hold the election on a Thursday making is very difficult for many young people to get home and vote. In government Sinn Féin will guarantee the holding of all elections at the weekend and we will reduce the voting age to 16. We will make it easier for people to vote and remove impediments to people exercising their franchise. I would encourage young people to get out an vote on May 24th.

"I would also like to make a particular appeal to young people this morning in relation to the deaths on our roads. Over the last few days seven people have been killed in five separate accidents. Hundreds more have died over the last twelve months, many of them young people. Many people have a responsibility to address this appalling and totally needless situation - including the state and local authorities but individual drivers also have a responsibility. Today we are setting out a series of proposals in relation to road safety but as part of this I would also ask young people to consider your own actions and those of your friends. It is possible to dramatically reduce fatalities on our roads but it means that we all have to change our own behaviour."ENDS

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