11 Jul 2013

Australian election leaves Gen Y cold

8:08 am on 11 July 2013

A chunk of Australians aged 17-25 are disinterested in politics and feel there isn't a party that best represents them.

A national survey by The Australia Institute conducted in May and released on Wednesday reveals 30% of people aged 17-25 are `not really interested' in the forthcoming federal election.

AAP reports about 15% are 'disinterested' and 68% don't know who's representing them in parliament.

Institute executive director Richard Denniss said the confusion and disinterest among the future leaders of Australia is "baffling".

"But I think for the most part it's not their fault. It's up to the politicians to engage them and win them over with policy," Dr Denniss said.

The survey of 806 people also found 47% believe no party best represents the needs of young people.

Associate professor Ariadne Vromen of Sydney University said the onus is on politicians to engage with young people in the right spaces.

"So using social media to talk to them: 95% of under-25s are on Facebook so it's the kind of thing you'd think about'," she told AAP.

"I'm a bit disillusioned with this concept of `let's blame the young people'. A lot of older people are disengaged with politics."

Professor Vromen described a flawed tendency to "homogenise people".

"Young people are talked about as being the same, when they have different social backgrounds, different ethnic backgrounds," she said.