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The Journal Live

Watch our LIVE event: The EU and You - how young Irish people can prosper as citizens of Europe

Our youth audience heard from MEPs and European expert on how they work – and challenged them on how EU should tackle issues such as climate change. / YouTube

MENTAL HEALTH ACTION and tackling the climate crisis are two of the key topics that young Irish people want the EU to come out strongly on right now.

This was the message coming from audience and stage at our youth-focused live event in Galway this week for The Good Information Project.

Filmed and livestreamed from the Pálás Cinema in the heart of city, the wide-ranging discussion looked at how the European Parliament works, the role of our MEPs, and whether Europe is doing enough for the young people of Ireland.

Our panel, hosted by Emmy Coffey Nguyen, was joined by Midlands-North-West MEPs Maria Walsh (Fine Gael) and Chris MacManus (Sinn Féin), who shared first-hand experience of their working week, the challenges they face in pushing forward their agendas, and the importance of youth involvement in European democracy.

Ciarán O’Driscoll, research and policy officer from European Movement Ireland, provided key insights on what people want to see out of the European Union, such as an extension of popular exchange programmes such as Erasmus into other areas of life. 

An audience, including representatives from the European Youth Parliament, pushed our guests on whether the European Parliament is doing enough on climate action, and noted the value of forums such as these over communication through social media.

One audience member – Leo O’Connell – noted that young people are often treated as “citizens of tomorrow, rather than citizens that are existing in the current day,” calling for an action plan to get young people involved at the European level on issues of climate.

Another, Conor Dowd, pointed out that to many, talk of climate transition suggests that action is not being taken fast enough, leading to an enlightening exchange with European People’s Party member Maria Walsh. 

Watch the whole conversation in our video at the top of this article. 

This work is co-funded by Journal Media and a grant programme from the European Parliament. Any opinions or conclusions expressed in this work are the author’s own. The European Parliament has no involvement in nor responsibility for the editorial content published by the project. For more information, see here

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