On 18 November 2020, IPANZ hosted Young Leaders in Local Government event at Russell McVeagh. Our panel, comprised of Mayor Campbell Barry, Councillor Sophie Hanford and Councillor Josh Trlin, discussed a range of topical issues, as well as provided insights into their own experiences and motivations for campaigning for office.
Each speaker began by discussing how they ended up in the positions they currently hold, with shared key drivers including increasing representation of younger demographics, giving a voice to the issues affecting young people, as well as the need to address climate change and inequality.
The speakers then discussed some important questions including the role of local government in relation to the role of central government, the impacts of COVID-19 on the work and means of Local Government and the challenges young people face in ensuring their voices are listened to and acted on. The speakers encouraged all attendees to see the experience of people in leadership positions as a consideration of 'quality not quantity', and the importance of making your thoughts and concerns known to your local representatives. We also heard some important questions from the attendees, including how local Councils are working to increase diversity within their Councils and how Central Government can better support Local Government.
We would like to thank our three panellists for their insightful and inspiring comments, as well as everyone who attended.