Fifteen members of MP Mike Bossio’s Youth Council visited Parliament Hill on Wednesday, coming from all over the riding from Bancroft to Bath.
The Youth Council arrived on a chartered Deseronto Transit bus, and started their day with a personal tour of Parliament by Bossio, including the original Library of Parliament, which survived the 1916 fire, the Senate, and the House of Commons. A particular highlight among the members was the chance to sit in the Speaker’s chair.
After lunch in the Parliamentary Dining Room, where the students and Bossio engaged in a lively discussion of political issues, the Council attended Question Period. New under the current government, Wednesday’s Question Period is “Prime Minister’s Questions,” where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau answers all questions, not just from official party leaders.
After Question Period, the group met with Prime Minister Trudeau, who thanked them for getting engaged in their community, and pointed out that the advice that they give Bossio is an important part of how he represents his constituents.
The Youth Council, now finishing its second year, is made up of young people ages 15-19 from across the riding who meet with Bossio to advise him on issues that matter to youth. This year, the group identified the environment and climate change and foreign affairs as their key priorities that they wanted to focus their work on. At earlier meetings, they met with Ret’d Ambassador John Schram, and took part in a clean-up at Sandy Pine Wildlife Centre.
A new council will be formed in September 2018 for a third year.
“It was such a great experience, and a great opportunity for learning about and appreciating Canada.”
-Kate Brown, Napanee
“It was a lot of fun! It was a new experience that I think showed a lot about the political system in Canada.”
-Callum Levett, Bath, Loyalist Township
“It was an amazing experience that allowed us to glimpse what it’s like to be a part of the Canadian political system. I truly appreciate the opportunity.”
-Lauren Dowling, Moscow, Stone Mills Township
“It was interesting to see the side of Parliament not shown to all Canadians. I couldn’t have asked for a better day!”
-Moira Wilson, Madoc
“I’m very thankful for the amazing experience! It was so thrilling to be able to sit in the Speaker’s Chair, let alone get to see aspects of Parliament that not every Canadian gets to see.”
-Meghan Mosgrove, Napanee
“I am so very proud of this group. Their level of engagement, knowledge of important issues, intellect, and passion are all extraordinary. Our future is truly in good hands!”
-Mike Bossio, MP