Results of the 2015 Scottish Youth Parliament elections in the Borders have been announced, with three representatives elected and more than 7,000 votes cast.
Young people from across the Scottish Borders had the opportunity to vote for their representative on 11 March. Polling stations were in place in all nine secondary schools as well at the multiple Borders College campuses. Eleven candidates stood for election for the three places to represent the Scottish Borders area with 7,396 votes cast by 4,675 voters.
Elected to represent the Scottish Borders were: Jack O’Hara (MSYP Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale), Coran McFarlane (MSYP Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire) and Cian Gullen (MSYP Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire).
The voting turnout for the two constituencies was 58.68% in Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale and 49.16% in Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire.
Youth Coordinator for these elections, Kris Chapman, a former MSYP himself from 2012 to 2014 said: “This is a really exciting time for young people in modern politics - enthusiasm and engagement is high as can be seen by 11 good candidates running for the three positions.
“They have all done a fantastic job promoting issues that matter to our young people across the Borders, something I know each and every one of them will continue after today’s announcement.”
Councillor Vicky Davidson, SBC’s executive member for culture, sport, youth and communities congratulated the three winners saying: “it’s never been more important for young people to really take hold of issues affecting their lives and I look forward to supporting our newly elected MYSPs and their campaigns. Being an elected MSYP gives them a position of influence and I urged them to realise and fully use that influence while they can.”
She also thanked the out-going MYSPs who will demit office in October, recognising Nicola Pringle (Oxton), Finlay Duff (Bonchester Bridge) and Scott Redmond (Hawick) for the positive contribution they have made to the Scottish Youth Parliament and the way in which they have represented the children and young people of the Borders at both a local and national level.
Councillor Iain Gillespie, SBC’s Children and Young People’s Champion added: “I’ve been extremely inspired by the hard fought campaigns run by each of the eleven candidates on a range of important issues and I wish our new MYSPs every success as they begin their term of office. I would also like to pay tribute to all the staff and teachers who helped to deliver a successful and smooth election.”