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The Young and Informed: Debate’s Coverage of the 2023 General Election

By Nic George (he/him)

Chief Reporter

The 2023 general election is just around the corner!

With two and a half months until polls close, Debate is launching our campaign, The Young and Informed, aiming to provide student-focused election coverage.

For many of you, this will be the first election you are eligible to vote in, which can be very intimidating, but this is also your first opportunity to have a say in our future.

It is important to empower students by ensuring you are heard and your concerns are addressed, as your perspectives will shape the political landscape that lies ahead.

At the heart of every student magazine is the voice of its students, so it is vital that our coverage represents that voice.

Here is a peek at what we will be providing in The Young and Informed:

  • Profiling Auckland MPs to hear their plans to improve the lives of their constituents and create better opportunities.

  • Interviews with experts who can provide fact-based perspectives on the future in store for us once we have graduated and out in the world.

  • Hearing from advocates seeking to transform their activism into institutional change.

  • Most of all, we want to talk to students and get their perspectives on the political atmosphere they are about to inherit.

We are an Auckland-based student magazine so we will primarily focus on issues close to home, but much of our struggles are felt nationwide.

We need to know how the future government plans to address the big issues impacting our lives as students, so we will be looking for solutions to the following:

The Environment: Climate Change is here. Auckland experienced the worst flooding in the last 3 decades and models created by climate experts have shown that there is a direct link between our greenhouse gas emissions and these extreme weather events.

We need to know what our leaders are planning to do about it, we need to know from experts whether those plans are viable and effective or just pixie dust.

The cost-of-living crisis: Labour has touted that they have brought annual inflation back in line, but we have seen the cost of food items increase by 12% in the last year.

As the country heads into a recession, it could become more difficult to find work at a time and students will feel the squeeze from both ends.

Mental Health: In the last four years we have all gone through a generational traumatic event.

Studies have shown that the pandemic did a number on our mental health, and experts will examine the long-term impacts for decades.

While lockdowns were proven to be effective at saving lives from COVID-19, years of having ineffective mental health systems left the country vulnerable.

Elections can be turbulent, and new issues will likely arise as we close in on the final polling day, so we will keep our ear close to the ground for any plot twists ahead.

This is also an opportunity for us to collaborate with the student journalists here at AUT, who want to gain political journalism experience.

As a former editor for the Te Waha Nui student newsroom, I have worked with a very talented cohort of young journos, who are eager to bring the lessons they have learned in class to the real world.

If you want coverage of a political issue, get in touch! There is a lot we hope to do in this space, including polls and vox pops around campus.

Don’t be shy if you see us around campus, we want to hear from you!


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