Across the world, young people have stepped up to lead social movements and speak out on a range of causes, from the climate crisis to gun control in the US.

In Singapore, young people have also stepped up to take action, whether it’s pressuring their university to reform its sexual harassment policies, or take part in organising the country’s first ever climate rally. But there’s also been less-than-happy conversations about young people and social movements, given the recent cancellation of a “Dissent and Resistance” programme at Yale-NUS.

What is the the role of youth activism in society? What is the state of student activism in Singapore? Following a democracy classroom on the same topic, New Naratif’s Editor-in-Chief Kirsten Han sits down with Kristian-Marc James Paul (SG Climate Rally), Mandy Chng (Sayoni), and Rocky Howe (Cassia Resettlement Team).

Rocky Howe and Mandy Chng Credit: New Naratif
Kristian-Marc James Paul and Kirsten Han Credit: New Naratif

Kirsten Han

Kirsten Han is a Singaporean journalist whose work often revolves around the themes of social justice, human rights, politics and democracy. Her bylines have appeared in publications like The Guardian, Foreign Policy, Asia Times and Waging Nonviolence. As an activist, Kirsten has advocated for an end to the death penalty in Singapore, and is a founding member of abolitionist group We Believe in Second Chances.