So… what is Policy?
When people talk about ‘Policy’, they’re really talking about a series of steps, or a process.
This process usually includes:
- identifying a problem
- coming up with options for solving that problem
- consulting with the people of Aotearoa
(including young people!)
- providing advice to decision-makers on the best way forward.
After the policy-making process has finished, the outcome could include:
- a law being passed
- a change in the way things are done
- an action plan or strategy to help solve a problem.
Policy makers work for government agencies, like the Ministry of Education, and are often experts in a particular field. Policy is politically neutral and involves providing advice based on evidence.
Why is youth voice important to policy?
The voices of young people can improve policy by:
- Ensuring the challenges facing young people are heard and understood
- Suggesting different ways of solving these challenges
- Helping policy makers understand which solutions are likely to help, or cause harm