Saanich Coun. Ned Taylor supports efforts to lower the voting age to 16. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Saanich councillor supports dropping the voting age

Coun. Ned Taylor supports efforts by Mira Blakely, a Grade 9 student

If you are 16 years old and pay taxes, you should be able to vote, says Coun. Ned Taylor in supporting efforts to lower the voting age.

“These youth are forced to pay taxes without representation,” said Taylor. “If you pay taxes, if you contribute to the government and the programs that are being funded by government, you should have a say in where those tax dollars are going.”

Taylor made this and other points in support of Mira Blakely, a Grade 9 student at Taylor’s old high school, Reynolds. Blakely launched a petition last year that calls on British Columbia to lower the voting age to 16 from 18, a demand that Taylor has also made.

RELATED: Student Voice: B.C. should lower voting age to 16 years

Taylor, who himself is still a teenager at 19, said lowering the voting age is about legitimizing decisions that senior politicians make today on behalf of future generations.

“Politicians are making decisions that are going to have long-term impacts, and young people have to have a voice at the table,” he said. “If you look at economic issues, if you look at social issues, if you look at environmental issues and climate change, these are really all issues that are going to have a greater impact on young people in the long term than anybody else.”

Not unlike Blakely, Taylor pushed for a lower voting age, when he was still in school and while on the municipal campaign trail.

The issue does enjoy local support. Local MLA Andrew Weaver, who is also leader of the B.C. Greens, has pushed for a lower voting age. A number of other jurisdictions have also lowered the voting age to 16.

RELATED: MLA Report: Lowering the voting age to 16 in BC

Taylor acknowledges that it might be difficult to change the voting age, even on the municipal level, a creature of the provincial government.

This said, he might bring forward some action, while promising to keep in the public’s mind.

“What we can do is put pressure on senior levels of government as local politicians, and for me as a young person, who is in elected office, I want to be able to support my peers, young people, to show to the provincial government that this is an issue on people’s mind. Young people want to vote, and if they were given the opportunity, they would vote in high numbers.”


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Crews repair damage after Tuesday night water main break in Langford

Flooding resulted in property damage, forced evacuation from Langford homes

Two missing Victoria children found safe

VicPD responded to two separate missing children calls Tuesday

Vancouver measles outbreak prompts vaccine vigilance on Island

Island health authorities push measles vaccinations - and not just for kids

UPDATED: Langford homes evacuated after water main break

Break at the corner of Goldstream Avenue and Strathmore Road, several homes without water

Snow not melting fast enough for some Greater Victoria residents

Resident unhappy with lack of snow removal on Mount Doug trails

‘Riya was a dreamer’: Mother of slain 11-year-old Ontario girl heartbroken

Her father, Roopesh Rajkumar, 41, was arrested some 130 kilometres away

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Experts urge caution after 10 human-triggered avalanches across B.C.

One man is still stuck after avalanche on south coast

Police seize bottles of grapefruit vodka from wanted man’s snow-pants

The men were pushing two shopping carts with a woman inside

Tonight’s sporting event costs more than the Super Bowl, and Obama is going

Tickets are going for more than $4,000 to watch the Duke - North Carolina basketball game

CRTC report finds ‘misleading, aggressive’ sales tactics used by telecom industry

Report recommends measures to make a fairer situation for consumers

Police dog tracks suspect through wintry Vancouver Island backcountry

Assault suspect arrested after two-hour track by Nanaimo RCMP police dog Jager

Trudeau takes personal hit amid SNC-Lavalin controversy: poll

Overall, 41 per cent of respondents believed the prime minister had done something wrong in the affair

B.C. photographer captures otters on ice

A Langley photographer was at the right place at the right time on the Fraser River

Most Read