This article details how the Body Shop and United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth launch ‘Be Seen Be Heard’ to amplify young voices in the halls of power.
The campaign seeks to create long-term structural changes to decision-making to be more inclusive of young people. It is launched today with the release of a joint report, ‘Be Seen Be Heard: Understanding young people’s political participation’. The report is a snapshot at a critical moment to understand preconceptions and structural barriers preventing young people from participating in public life, along with recommendations to address these challenges for the benefit of societies around the world. The report includes findings from the largest-ever survey carried out by The Body Shop in December 2021, covering 26 countries with 27,043 respondents in total, over half of which were under age 30.
The research found that 82% of people surveyed agree that political systems need drastic reform to be fit for the future. Across the board, 84% of people described politicians as ‘self-interested’ and 75% of people surveyed think politicians are corrupt. Three quarters of people under age 30 felt that politicians and business leaders have ‘messed things up’ for people and the planet.