A stand-up comedian, a volunteer and politician-in-the-making, Jarrett Hagglund is a man of many trades, and Y57′s Youth of the Month for June. “People are so hurt by the system that they don’t have the capacity to speak for themselves and that’s where I want to step in,” says Jarrett. At age 24, Jarrett is a bright and confident young man who aims to stand up for the unfortunate.
It all started when Jarrett began performing as a stand-up comedian in Toronto. He found his love for political affairs when he first got a taste of politics as a youth Pride representative for the BC NDP. Volunteering with the Burnaby Douglas Riding Association, he managed to work with Bill Siksay, who is the first MP to be openly gay when elected in the House of Commons. During his time with Siksay, Jarrett learned many valuable principals including steps to be a well rounded MP and being genuine. One of the most important things that Siksay taught, was the principal of sticking to your beliefs. “There were times where he voted against the party because of what he believed and got flack for it,” says Jarrett.
Jarrett hopes to end injustice among the unfortunate. In the past, he volunteered for the A Loving Spoonsful, a non-profit organization that provides free meals to people living with HIV/AIDS. “As a political activist, I want to tackle the issues of LGBT bullying,” says Jarrett. I know what it was like to be different as a kid and what I went through is not what other youth should experience at all. I want to offer better social services and tax systems, especially regarding the environment. For years, the baby boomer generation has been talking about it but nothing as been done. Its up to us to take action and preserve the nature for our future generation.”
Aside from his political life, Jarrett is a frequent art lover. He attends many local open mics and events such as the In The House Festival, the Vancouver Comedy Festival and the Vancouver International Fringe Festival, to name a few. Jarrett is also a regular performing member of Tops & Bottoms, a weekly Monday night improv community show at the Oasis Ultra Lounge featuring LGBT performers.
Jarrett offers wise words for youth who are opening a door of political affairs. “Get involved with organizations, learn as much as you can,” says Jarrett. “Read a lot if you can. Attend political events, and see what its like! Socialize with as many people as you can and create a network. And most importantly, be part of your community.”
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