CLA News / YCLA representative Maximilian Taylor reports on his attendance at the 10th Commonwealth Youth Ministers’ Meeting


Last month, I had the honour of representing the CLA at the 10th Commonwealth Youth Ministers’ Meeting (CYMM), which was hosted by the Government of Pakistan but held at Marlborough House, UK, due to the floods in 2022.

The CYMM is a quadrennial conference in which pan-Commonwealth youth policy can be discussed and agreed upon, with the opportunity for meaningful input from youth leaders representing various accredited organisations. These included the YMCA, Commonwealth Youth Council and, of course, the YCLA.

The first day was centred around several breakout rooms, such as educational and environmental policy, with the goal of revising the draft ministerial declaration. Wanting to prepare for the upcoming YCLA Virtual Conference panel on Climate Justice, as well as the Borneo Rainforest Law Conference, I attended the environment breakout room. The discussions were interesting and covered many aspects such as intergenerational equity and the use of statutory boards of professionals under 30, for advising government agencies. A highlight was learning of Vanuatu’s initiative to obtain an Advisory Opinion, from the International Court of Justice, as to States’ Responsibilities relevant to climate action. Governments in the Pacific Community were seeking engagement from young people and this is clearly pertinent to the work of the CLA, in general, and the YCLA, in particular. I am glad to say that plans for future collaboration are already underway.

The final day of 10th CYMM was the Commonwealth Expo, a fantastic opportunity to meet representatives of other accredited organisation. I attended with Helen Jones MBE and Elizabeth Speller of It’s a Penalty, an NGO working to prevent human trafficking and child abuse, with whom the CLA partnered for the CommonProtect project. The “speed dating” format of the Expo was frenetic and ideal for talking with many new people throughout the morning. I am happy to report that the CLA was much sought after, with suggestions of drafting Bills, for the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association’s Youth Parliament, to sitting down for Youth Academy masterclasses, on careers in law. I look forward to seeing where these connections lead.

Maximilian Taylor

Young Commonwealth Lawyers Association Committee members for England and Wales