Wyndham teen Tremane Baxter elected Kimberley youth parliament representative

Jane MurphyThe Kimberley Echo
Tremane Baxter with Mining and Pastoral MLC Kyle McGinn.
Camera IconTremane Baxter with Mining and Pastoral MLC Kyle McGinn. Credit: Supplied

Wyndham’s Tremane Baxter always hoped to be an advocate for his community and, now, as the 2022 Youth Parliament member for Kimberley, he can do just that.

The 15-year-old Ngarinyin Walmajarri man is one of about 50 youths across WA to be selected as representatives of their State electorate in the YMCA Youth Parliament Program.

For Tremane, politics is a family affair with not one, but two aunties in Parliament — Kimberley MLA Divina D’Anna and Mining and Pastoral MLC Rosetta Sahanna.

“I’ve always actually been interested in politics, but my aunties have cemented that even more. I ask questions and aunties help wherever they can.”

Throughout the program, Tremane has the opportunity to debate bills on behalf of the Kimberley before they are presented to the Governor, Premier and Leader of the Opposition in WA for consideration.

“You’re put into a committee and it’s made up of seven or eight people, and then you discuss a bill for six whole months,” he said.

“They go all the way up to the top desk. It’s a very lengthy process these bills, but in the end, they’re absolutely worth it.”

During his term, the teenager said one topic in particular is high on his agenda; youth crime.

“As we know up in Kimberley, the youth crime as been skyrocketing at the moment,” he said. “We discussed raising the criminal age from 10 to 14, and we also discussed early intervention programs the Government could fund.”

“I would like to see more Indigenous people coming to the table. We should have more people out in the regions, more programs because the regions are the backbone of the West Australian economy.”

With such a big leap from the far north, the young Wyndham teen isn’t afraid to look to the future, setting his sights on a career in community advocacy.

“I’ve always had this thing in the back of my head about being a cop, a police officer. But as a long term career goal, you know, I’d love to see myself in politics, even just advocating for the community in general — whether that’s local council or advocacy committee. Something like that, where I’m getting out there for the community.”

Youth Parliament is a six-month long program and involves training and a camp as well as the committee meetings.

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