The Boston Globe’s Katheleen Conti writes today about the efforts of Lowell High School senior Susan Le and her cohorts to lower the voting age in the city’s local elections to 17. Le, a local youth organization UTEC (United Teen Equality Center) and a cadre of supporters persuaded councilors to petition the state Legislature to allow Lowell to lower its voting age for municipal elections – both City Council and School Committee races. This effort to enfranchise 17-year olds is also partnered another pending bill that would make a civics course a high school graduation requirement by the 2014-2015 school year.
Time is of the essence. The voters of Lowell have the final say on this question. In order to be placed on the November 2 Lowell municipal election ballot, the petition must be approved by the House and Senate and then signed by Governor Patrick by October 3rd.
Learn more about Susan Le, this enfranchisement campaign, the arguments, an historical perspective and also get the views of U Mass Lowell political science professor Frank Talty and others here at boston.com.
Whatever the outcome, these Lowell teens will certainly have gotten a lesson in civics and civic engagement. Stay tuned.