Agenda and minutes

Youth Cabinet
Wednesday, 15th February, 2017 5.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Andrea Tomlinson  Democratic Services

No. Item



Councillor Members of the Youth Cabinet are asked whether they have an interest in any item on the agenda and, if so to formally declare that interest.


There were no declarations of interest made at the meeting.




It was agreed:


That the Minutes of the last meeting held on 13 October 2016 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.



Nadine Nolan from Bury CCG will report at the meeting.


Dave McCann, Bury Clinical Commissioning Group Governing Body Lay Member - Patient and Public Involvement and Chair of Bury’s Patients’ Cabinet attended the Youth Cabinet to explain his role within the Patient Cabinet and as a Lay member of the CCG Governing Body.


Dave explained that the Patient Cabinet is representative of the borough in relation to ethnicity, gender, disability and health needs and captures all geographical areas in Bury.

The Patient Cabinet receives information from various groups and organisations and passes this on to the Clinical Commissioning Group. This advises on what the needs of the borough are.


Dave explained that there was currently no communication with youth groups and this was a big information gap.


The Patients’ Cabinet would like to bring health related topics to the Youth Cabinet for input and for the Youth Cabinet to represent the youth of the Town.


It was suggested that the Youth Cabinet Members could discuss issues with their peers at school and then feedback at Youth Cabinet Meetings. If an issue was felt to be particularly relevant to young people the Youth Cabinet could ask for a consultation in schools to be carried out.


Those present were given the opportunity to ask questions and make comments and the following points were raised:-


·         The Youth Cabinet should be informed of what topics/consultations were due to be brought to the meetings so that they could consult with their schools beforehand.


·         It was asked whether the Patient Cabinet had undertaken any work involving CAMHS?


Dave explained that CAMHS was a service that the Patient Cabinet had worked on. Mental health was reviewed annually and it was definitely something that Youth Cabinet could look at.


·         Councillor Cathcart stated that it was a good time for the Youth Cabinet to be given the opportunity to be involved the consultation of health reforms to services. There were lots of services under review which young people should have a say in.


·         Councillor Cathcart asked that consultation documents for Youth Cabinet are young person friendly as the use of acronyms is very popular especially in health documents.


Heather explained that the Youth Cabinet had been asked to Youthproof documents and publications in the past and would be more than willing to undertake this again if needed.


Dave explained that the CCG had a communications team that worked on making sure that all documents were user friendly across age groups, language and disabilities.


·         It was asked whether sexual health issues could be discussed.


Dave reported that services available in relation to sexual health should be discussed as there are many services available that people may not know about. Signposting services was something that the CCG are keen to do.


It was agreed:-


1.    That the Youth Cabinet would welcome the opportunity to become the voice of young people across the borough in relation to health services and future provision.


2.    That Dave McCann be thanked for his attendance at the Youth Cabinet Meeting.




Heather will report at the meeting


Heather Walton reported that the UK Youth Parliament elections had taken place on Thursday 9 February. The elections had taken place in schools, colleges and at the Connexions office.


7500 young people had voted

Numair Khalid of Parrenthorn High School was elected as Bury’s MYP with 1,459 votes, and his two deputies will be Viktoria Ouomble from St Monica’s High School (932 votes) and Bethanie Mortenson from Prestwich Arts College (912 votes).


It was agreed:


That Numair, Victoria and Bethanie be congratulated on their election.




Heather will report at the meeting


Heather reported that there had been a Youth Takeover Day where young people had taken over the Council for a day. They had met with the Chief Executive and the Leader and discussed how the Council operates. They had also had a tour of the Council Chamber where the meetings of the Council take place.


The young people attending the takeover day had been asked to prioritise services that the Council provided and had come up with the following list with the top priorities first;


·         Children and Young People

·         Housing

·         Care Services for Young People

·         Care Services for Adults

·         Adult Education

·         Waste Management

·         Children’s Centres

·         Youth Services and Connexions

·         Road Maintenance

·         Planning

·         Democratic and Election Services

·         Sport and Leisure Services

·         Libraries

·         Art Galleries


Heather explained that one of the key findings from the Circles of Influence


The Cabinet were then asked to split into groups and come up with plans on how to:


·         Encourage people to be healthy;

·         Help with emotional health and wellbeing


Each group gave feedback


Those from Parrenthorn and Prestwich High schools explained that year 11 was such a stressful year that there should be support groups to be able to discuss general worries and their mental health . This would help young people to realise that everyone was going through a stressful time. The group had also discussed the use of a worry board where anonymous concerns could be posted on post it notes – this might help identify any trends. There was also a school nurse with appointments on a Monday but not many people were aware of this so it should be advertised more.


It was stated that mental health awareness was not promoted much in schools and it was seen as almost a taboo subject. To make the issue more normal there should be mental health discussions in citizenship classes from year 7 and regular assemblies. It was also suggested that the role of the school nurse should be advertised through a welcome assembly and then promoted regularly.


The St Monica’s High School group reported that they stop their citizenship classes after year 8 to allow pupils to concentrate on their GCSEs. It was suggested that health and wellbeing and mental health in particular should be discussed openly from when students start in the school in year 7. There could be workshops organised where concerns could be discussed and this would encourage people to talk about their feelings. It was suggested that the PHSE co-ordinator at the school should be made aware of the concerns and suggestions.


The St Gabriel’s and Bury Church group suggested that the issue of mental health should be incorporated into the curriculum so that it didn’t become a taboo subject and have re-caps every term to spread the word on what support was available.


Heather suggested that those present take some of the ideas and suggestion to their PSHE co-ordinator at school to see if some of the ideas could be implemented within all of the schools.



Should the Government introduce a Sugar Tax on soft drinks containing sugar?


Those present took part in a debate as to whether the Government should introduce a Sugar Tax on sugary drinks. The debate also questioned whether a sugar tax should be added to other products such as sweets, chocolate and fruit juice.


Opening speeches were made and arguments for and against were discussed.  After the debate those present were asked to vote and it was agreed that the Government should introduce a sugar tax.


Following the debate those present were asked to decide what the topic of the Big Debate should be at the next meeting of the Youth Cabinet.


The following subjects were suggested:-


1.    Should the school curriculum be reviewed and an alternative offered. Should schools be able to set their own curriculum?

2.    Is there too much homework? Should the amount of homework be regulated?

3.    Should mobile technology be allowed in schools for research purposes?

4.    Should President of the United States, Donald Trump be allowed into Great Britain on a state visit?


The Youth Cabinet held a vote and it was agreed that number 4 would be the next Big Debate topic.




A member of the Youth Cabinet referred to public transport across Bury and the issues that young people had when using it.


It was suggested that Councillor Bayley be invited to the next meeting of the Youth Cabinet as he is the Council’s representative on the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee.


Councillor Cathcart referred to the Emotional Health App that had been discussed at the last meeting of the Youth Cabinet and stated that he would bring the results to the next meeting of the Youth Cabinet.