Disinterested youth feel no party represents them

More than a million young Australians feel no political party best represents the needs of young people, according to research by The Australia Institute.

The new survey of more than 800 respondents aged 17-25 found 47 per cent believe no party best represents them.

“This should act as a warning to our politicians that it’s time to release some policy that’s directed at young people because there are clearly plenty of votes to be won,” Executive Director of The Australia Institute Dr Richard Denniss said.

“When you look at these figures it’s not surprising that we also found a high level of disinterest among younger Australians,” Dr Denniss said.

15 per cent of respondents said they were ‘disinterested’ in the upcoming election, while 30 per cent said they were ‘not really interested.’

The survey also found that 68 per cent of young Australians don’t know who their local Member of Parliament is and 59 per cent of those who are not enrolled to vote, don’t intend to.

“The confusion and disinterest among our future leaders is baffling, but I think for the most part it’s not their fault. It’s up to the politicians to engage them and win them over with policy,” Dr Denniss said.

The Australia Institute also asked what factors would change how young people intended to vote.

Just 18 per cent of respondents believe a positive meeting with their local member would influence their vote, while 34 per cent said media stories would have an impact. 22 per cent nominated political advertising as a factor which could sway their vote.

Note for editors:

The Australia Institute conducted an online survey in May 2013 with 806 respondents aged 17-25. Respondents were sourced from a reputable independent online panel provider and received a small incentive of reward points to participate. Survey results are available at www.tai.org.au.

For media inquiries please contact Caelin Worthington on 0421 552 664.

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