On November 29, 2014, 200 members of the Seoul Youth Hope Assembly 2014 gathered at Seoul City Hall.
The said assembly is an annual occasion for young people in Seoul to propose and discuss policies to the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG), with Mayor Park Won Soon and other relevant officials in attendance. This year marked the second year.
The young people were members of the Youth Participation Committee operated by Seoul City and 12 autonomous districts under the Framework Act on Juveniles and Seoul City’s municipal ordinance on young people to help young people take part in the policy formulation process or express their opinions.
The following items, which were proposed by the committee, were adopted by the SMG: designation of an honorary vice mayor representing young people (proposed in July 2014); making the assembly a routine session; a youth-led festival (in October 2014).
This year, the agenda of the annual session was as follows: ▴policy-related suggestions, ▴ a talk with the mayor, ▴ performances by clubs of young people and the like under the theme of “May We Cross the Road? Give Them the Green Light.” A total of 900-plus youths had been preparing, through meetings, workshops, and questionnaire-based surveys, since July.
The presentation made on the day included suggestions on a total of six matters, such as the development of ways for young people to take part in municipal policy formulation, welfare for young people, future careers of young people, and allowing students to take part in kiosk operation in public facilities.
Programs run by children, such as radio-based counseling, news updates, onsite interviews, and talk shows, attracted attention due to their novelty.
The SMG will review the suggestions made by the children and have them reflected in municipal policies as much as possible, while setting up an interactive system for the formulation of youth-related policies by disclosing the policy formulation process to young people.
After the session, Mayor Park Won Soon said, “The Seoul Youth Hope Assembly is a session for direct communication between the SMG and young people. We will develop it as a session that encourages young people to take part in the formulation of municipal policies concerning them, and we will continue to strive to formulate relevant policies that can obtain young people’s sympathies.”