“It’s up to you, me – all of us!” Children in climate citizens’ assemblies
Involving children in climate citizens’ assemblies: reflections from Children’s Parliament’s participation in Scotland’s Climate Assembly.
This event will be held in Zoom and the link will be shared in advance. The event will be recorded. There will be live BSL interpretation.
- Members and organisers from the Children’s Parliament
- Members and organisers from Scotland’s Climate Assembly
- Co-hosted by Oliver Escobar (Edinburgh Futures Institute), and Katie Reid and Jessica Smith (Children’s Parliament)
About the event
Scotland’s Climate Assembly is the first citizens’ assembly to have directly involved children under the age of 16, through a partnership with Children’s Parliament. From October 2020 – March 2021, Children’s Parliament worked with over 100 Members of Children’s Parliament (MCPs) across Scotland aged 7-14 to ensure their views, ideas and calls to action informed Scotland’s Climate Assembly deliberations. 12 of the children became a team of ‘Investigators’, analysing and further exploring the views of their peers, and presenting back their findings to the adult Assembly members. In June 2021, Scotland’s Climate Assembly presented its 81 recommendations and children’s calls to action to the Scottish Parliament on how Scotland should change to tackle the climate emergency in an effective and fair way.
Children’s participation in the Climate Assembly is a clear example of commitment to realising children’s human rights in Scotland. In March 2021, after decades of campaigning from children, young people and adults, the Scottish Parliament unanimously passed the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) Incorporation Bill, which will be granted royal assent in the autumn. To celebrate, Children’s Parliament is hosting the Year of Childhood, exploring childhood through the lens of children’s human rights and creating opportunities to share rights-based practice in an atmosphere of optimism and confidence.
In November, Scotland is set to host COP26, bringing together decision-makers from across the globe to agree on actions for addressing the climate emergency. With six weeks until COP26 taking place, this event in our Year of Childhood "In Conversation With..." Series is a unique, timely opportunity to hear from some of the children involved in Scotland’s Climate Assembly – and to consider broader questions of how to meaningfully involve children in decision-making processes about the climate emergency such as citizens’ assemblies and other forms of deliberative democracy going forward.
In this conversation, we will bring together our 12 Investigators, in partnership with members of Scotland’s Climate Assembly to share their experiences of working together and what they learned from each other. There will be plenty of opportunity for questions from the audience, and we shall share a recording of the discussions following the event.
“I think kids should have some say on the future of climate change because we have good ideas which could be the kickstart that we need to defeat climate change.”
Ben, Member of Children’s Parliament, age 10, Highlands