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David Collier and Terry White
United Nations...in Bexley?
Matt Cooke, BBC London
You may never have heard of Article 12, but for 70 young people in Bexley, it's meant the difference between being ignored - and taking their place in important decision making for the borough.
The United Nations Headquarters in Manhattan may not have much in common with the Council Chambers of Bexley - but, a piece of legislation has brought them much closer than before.
Youth Council Members
Seventy young people from the borough's Youth Council and the local UK Youth Parliament representatives have taken part in a special Article 12 conference.
Article 12 is part of the UN convention which states children have the right to participate in decision making that is relevant to their own lives.
The event held for secondary school students was timed to coincide with the launch of a new website - Bexley Youth Voice.
The new website was designed by young people from Bexley and includes blogs, news and links to associated websites.
The Fretts played at the event
Cllr Simon Windle said: "I am always delighted to hear about the success of another Article 12 conference in Bexley."
He continued: "we are privileged enough to have a strong, thriving youth council and hard working Youth Parliament representatives that are keen to get involved and speak out for the rights of young people in the borough."
"They have worked hard to produce an easily accessible website and together with our youth services and partners, played an active role in the conference. It is a joy to see our young people taking responsibility and getting involved."
Rebecca Hunt, aged 15 said: "The conference was a really informative experience where we got to learn more about the Bexley Youth Council and also the consequences of knife crime."
The conference heard from schools and members of youth groups.
A number of workshops were put on to mark the event including an interactive knife crime discussion, the role of policing and self defence classes.
Borough Commander meets members
Youth Council member, Michael Alderton aged 16 from St Columba's Catholic Boys School, said: "I found the article 12 conference to be an enjoyable event. I learnt a lot about what the youth service does for the youth in our area."
last updated: 04/10/2008 at 21:28