Applications to join the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly are now open

Session: Session currently unavailable

Date: 26 September 2023

Reference: SO 02/23/24

The Northern Ireland Youth Assembly is seeking young people in Years 9-12 to apply to become members of the 2023 -2025 Youth Assembly.

The Youth Assembly, which was founded in 2021, is an opportunity for young people to share their views on issues of importance to them and to directly influence decisions taken by the Northern Ireland Assembly and other key policy makers.

The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey said, “I am delighted to announce today that applications to the Youth Assembly are now open. It has been an absolute privilege for me to work with the inaugural Youth Assembly, which ran from 2021 -2023.  During that time, I, and indeed many others, have been impressed by the enthusiasm with which the Youth Assembly Members grasped the platform they had, and the insights and fresh thinking they provided. 

“Our previous Youth Assembly Members worked tirelessly to explore, debate and make recommendations on a number of important societal issues such as climate change, education, mental health and the rights of children and young people. They provided the perspective of young people to a wide range of public bodies and decision makers and have certainly laid a positive path for the new intake of Members.  I have no doubt that this new intake of young people will make the second Youth Assembly a resounding success.”

During their two-year term, Youth Assembly Members will meet regularly in Parliament Buildings, in meetings chaired by the Assembly Speaker. They will also participate in focussed committee meetings to discuss their ideas, views and recommendations in greater detail.  

Young people who are selected to be part of the Youth Assembly will be offered a range of training and support. This will include learning about how the Assembly works, making presentations, conducting research and talking to experts about issues of concern.

Selection of Youth Assembly members will ensure that young people from all constituencies and Section 75 categories are represented. Those who are not selected to become members will still be able to take part in the Youth Assembly Consultation Forum. This group will support the work of the Youth Assembly as the first point of contact for Youth Assembly members as they research and collate the views of young people.

Speaker Maskey concluded, “I am genuinely looking forward to meeting the new members of the Youth Assembly and seeing the enthusiasm that I know they will bring to their roles. This is a vital opportunity for young people to not only use their voice to influence directly on policy-making and the legislative process, but also to give a voice to all of our children and young people here. 

“I would encourage all young people to consider this opportunity to make their voice heard in shaping a better, brighter future for all.”



Notes to Editors

  • Young people can apply online via
    Advice and assistance on other application formats can be sought by emailing
  • The application process will open on Monday 25 September and will close at 5pm on Monday 16 October 2023.
  • Interviews with the Assembly Speaker and Members of the inaugural (2021-2023) Youth Assembly Members will be available upon request.
  • The Youth Assembly will have 90 members, 54 of whom will be drawn from the Northern Ireland Assembly constituencies and 36 others to ensure inclusive and proportionate representation from Section 75 categories.
  • The Youth Assembly is open to young people in Years 9 -12.
  • It is envisaged that the Youth Assembly will have at least two plenary sittings a year and have up to four Committees, which will meet more regularly.
  • The plenary sittings will take place in Parliament Buildings and will be presided over by the Speaker in the Assembly Chamber.
  • The Committees of the Youth Assembly may also meet in Parliament Buildings, but it is expected that they will also meet in other locations, including virtually.
  • Comprehensive safeguarding measures and protections will be put in place, including training and support for the members of the Youth Assembly and all those working with them.
  • Find out more by following the Northern Ireland Youth Assembly on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. 

For media queries please contact:

Sinead Murphy
The Communications Office
Northern Ireland Assembly
Mobile: 0789 9864 368

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