Page last updated at 16:08 GMT, Friday, 30 October 2009

The old go free, what about me?

By Tia, 12, Hannah, 12, and Shabana, 17, School Reporters
The Piggott School, Berkshire

Passengers on a bus in their seats
On the buses: Have you paid?

The hustle and bustle of eager young political minds filled the House of Commons today.

The grand lights hanging from the ceiling gave the oak wood desks a shiny effect. The legendary green seats act as a welcoming platform, almost inviting you to express your views and opinions.

Amongst the many issues discussed today by the Youth Parliament, one topic that was raised was why should there be free transport for the over 60's but not for the young people.

The old go free

Emma Nelson, a representative from the West Midlands, said: "Young people do not deserve free transport. The elderly do deserve it." She added: "We already have money off our travel."

In agreement with this view, Justin Kempley, representing Epping Forest, expressed concern towards the economical climate.

Emotion explosion

Tom Turrell, 18, a representative, from Northamptonshire agreed. He contributed to this debate by saying: "Older people have earned their free transport, and to be fair, what have we done?"

This created uproar amongst the members of the Youth Parliament, who, having heard this comment, started to hiss and boo. His response to this was: "We have to be brutally honest, and this is the truth!"

What about me?

However, the counter argument was presented by Liam Beattie, a representative from Scotland. He opened the debate and said: "Young people rely on transport." He added: "Age should not be a barrier."

Becci Crocker, representing Devon, claimed that in her opinion "pensioners are happy to give up concession cards so that young people can travel for free."

This particular side of the argument was also accepted by Siobhan Brasier, a representative from the South West. She made the point that "free transport will help the economy, and public transport is the only way to get around."

She concluded this debate by suggesting that the young and the old have similar reasons for wanting free transport."


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