Mick Antoniw is a Welsh Labour Party Member of the National Assembly for Wales (AM). He has been an AM since 2011 when he was elected as the Assembly Member for the Pontypridd constituency. As Mick is the Assembly Member for Pontypridd, his answers can only represent people living in Pontypridd.
Question 1: What difference have you made to Rhondda Cynon Taf since you’ve been elected?
I have focused on increasing the amount of funding coming into the area and grants in the form of community grants and 21st-century schools. In order to do this, it has been important to work with the council as a team. We have had success. Together we will now be having a 40 million pound investment in the Pontypridd Taff Vale precinct which will also house: “Transport for Wales” bringing hundreds of jobs into the area. Also other investments in schools. The Welsh Governments 21 st century schools programme will in 2020 have resulted in around half a billion pounds of investment in new education facilities across RCT. I have also worked to support community groups. It is important the people have access to their local representatives which is why myself and Owen Smith MP opened an office in the town and hold regular surgeries. We are also regularly out and about knocking doors.
Question 2: What will you do to improve the prospects of young people and what should be done to ensure that young people have their voices heard? I am very supportive of introducing legislation to reduce the voting age to 16. I am currently doing a tour of schools and colleges to speak to young people about this and to canvass their ideas.
Question 3: What’s the biggest challenge the world faces today, in your opinion? Inequality. A society which mainly operates to keep a small number of people very rich cannot survive. We need to properly value our teachers, nurses, social workers, [those] who do so much to look after us when we need help.
Question 4: What’s the number one thing you hope to change in Rhondda Cynon Taf? I want people to be positive. I want young people to aspire to achieve the best they can and have the opportunity to do so. I want people in RCT to feel they have power and control over their lives.
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