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On Monday 24 October, the independent Riots Communities and Victims Panel, set up by the government, heard from 20 young people from Young Advisors and Catch22 all aged between 14 and 20 during an open and frank discussion on the August riots.
At the event, Young Advisors from Southwark, Waltham Forest and the West Midlands told the Panel how the riots made them feel, why they thought some young people rioted and not others and what could be done to prevent people rioting on this scale again.
Some young people said the riots were long overdue and others said the original reason got lost with the majority of people looting to get free things.
Simon Marcus, Riots Panel member and founder of the Boxing Academy, an alternative education project for teenagers with sites in Tottenham and Hackney, facilitated the event.
“The Young Advisors were open and honest with us in this session and they expressed a lot of interesting and valid points about why they thought the riots happened.
“The Panel wants to give more young people the chance to have their say about why they think the riots might have happened and what steps could have been taken to prevent them.
“I would urge the Young Advisors to spread the word on this and encourage more young people to get in touch with us.
“Anyone can email, tweet or write to us. If young people want to work together and submit their thoughts in a group they are more then welcome to.
“Everyone should have the chance to have their say on this. If young people give us their views, they will be presented to the Prime Minister in our final report.”
The Panel is also holding open public meetings across the country and anyone is welcome to attend these and express their views and opinions. Details of these meetings can be found at http://riotspanel.independent.gov.uk/meetings-and-visits/
If young people want to submit their views to the Panel they can email firstname.lastname@example.org, follow the Panel on twitter - @riotspanel, or write to the Panel at: Riots Panel, Eland House, Bressenden Place, SW1E 5DU.
To read about another Young Advisor riot response panel click here