HC Deb 03 August 1976 vol 916 c1418
9. Mr. Steen

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will make a statement as to any future policy initiatives he is considering with regard to young people within his remit, excluding the establishment of committees composed principally of officials.

Mr. Gerry Fowler

My right hon. Friend has no statement to make at the present time.

Mr. Steen

Does the Minister agree that the appalling track record of the youth department, coupled with his own lack of interest in and sympathy with the needs and plight of young people, surely deserves an entry in the Guinness Book of Records?

Mr. Fowler

I really do not understand the purpose of the hon. Gentleman's question, save possibly to be insulting. I am at least establishing a national youth forum. It was the hon. Gentleman's right hon. Friend, as a member of the Conservative Administration, who abolished the old National Consultative Council. I am ensuring that it will have at least one-third of its permanent membership composed of young people under the age of 26. That is great progress by the standards of the past.