January’s The League Presents features a discussion with Newton North High School junior Olivia Pozen and Newton North High School senior Coral Lin, co-chairs of Vote16 Newton, a non-partisan, student run campaign dedicated to lowering the voting age in Newton to 16 years.
Olivia and Coral, as one of their advocacy projects,* are working alongside several other students to pass Vote 16 through a home rule petition in Newton. Together with City Councilor Bill Humphrey, Olivia approached the LWVN about having a show on the Vote16 initiative. LWVN has not yet taken a position on the proposed home rule petition.
City Councilors Ryan, Bowman, Noel, Greenberg, Danberg, Downs, Kelley, Leary, and Norton have joined City Councilor Humphrey with a request for a home rule petition to provide legal voting rights in municipal elections for City of Newton residents 16 & 17 years old. Should the council pass this request for a home rule petition, Newton will join Brookline, Cambridge, Concord, Lowell, North Hampton, and Somerville as Massachusetts municipalities that permit 16 and 17 year olds to vote.
*Olivia and Coral are interns with the Newton North High School Center for Civic Engagement and Service (CCES). CCES creates opportunities for every student at Newton North to participate in community action, service, and civic life. They help students explore issues they are passionate about and provide opportunities for them to practice civic engagement and develop leadership skills.