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March 30, 2023

Youth Parliament: Students and high school students learn debating laws in the Chamber of Deputies

About 120 students and high school students from across the country will simulate the legislative process to learn initiating, debating and voting laws at the Chamber of Deputies, from Friday to Sunday.

The educative project “Youth Parliament” is at the VIII-th edition and is organized by the Association Pro Democratia, in partnership with the Chamber of Deputies and Hanns Seidel Romania Foundation.

The Program’s coordinator, Iuliana Iliescu, mentioned at the project’s opening on Friday that this event aims for a better understanding of Parliament by young people.

“The organization of this event is meant for a better understanding of the Parliament, the procedure of debating the laws in the Parliament in commissions and plenary. The legislative decision making is one of the most important forms you can make yourself heard. I ask you to get involved, to participate in all the discussions upon the laws from parliamentary groups, commissions and then present them plenary”, says Iliescu to the participants.

The director of the online publication “Intervio.ro”, Andrei Stoian, advised the participants to be involved in society, arguing that is not the enough to vote once in four years.

“It is extremely important to be involved day by day in your community. The digital era offers us so much power that you cannot even imagine. You can bring the change in society, all you need is to want it. But in order to want it you must be also informed”, Stoian addressed to the young people.

The manager of the NGO Group of the European Youth for Change (GEYC), Gabriel Brezoiu, says that the perception towards MPs is a negative one and invited the young people to participate in the democratic system and change the perception.

The participants were divided in parliamentary groups, in accordance with the current Parliament’s structure: Social Democratic Party (PSD), National Liberal Party (PNL), National Union for Romania’s Progress (UNPR), Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE). During three days they will debate the proposed laws within the four special commissions: public administration and territory planning; defence, public order and national security; environment and ecology; health and family, while later they will debate laws in the plenum.

Among the proposed laws were: redistribution of income tax, changing the status of locally elected representatives, organizing and functioning of military summer camps, management of the industrial waste or the first electric car programme.

Participants have also organized a press team informing on debates in the “Young MPs’ voice” publication.

Youths have shown that it is an opportunity for them to see the way the decisions are taken in the Parliament, whereas others expressed the will to become members of Parliament.

“In the long-term, I am thinking of a career as a member of the Parliament. This year I have applied for the health commission because health is an important aspect. I have come up with a proposal for increasing the number of blood donors from Romania since it is a really low rate – 1 pct” commented a young high school student.

“It is an opportunity for the young to develop their skills, to be active in society, to experience the MP’s role in the Romanian Parliament. I have a project on afforestation”, mentioned a participant from the Republic of Moldova.

A student has qualified the Parliament’s activity as interesting, but “not necessarily demanding”. “It is demanding as much as you want to get involved. I believe it is beneficial for each of us to analyze the way a legislative process is evolving” says the previous participant.

Another participant from Galati has expressed the hope to be a MP. “My role model is Vlad Tepes. I want to be the new role model of politician. In general, in our society everything is destroyed. (…) I do not know if anybody has taken a real stand in certain problems, even on Basarabia issue. With astonishment I have concluded that Nicolae Ceausescu has tried to do much more, as he was discussing with the Soviets the Basarabia issue”, the student mentioned, according to Agerpres.

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