Issues: Young People
- Education for life, not just exams
- No university tuition fees
- Jobs you can build a life on
- Housing you can afford
- An environment you can thrive in
Young people have good reason to feel betrayed by their elders.
There's the schools turned into exam factories, the huge weight of tuition fee debt, the challenges in securing a job you can build a life on and the difficult of finding affordable, decent housing.
And there's the great worries about the state of the natural world on which we all rely - not just climate change, but the destruction of biodiversity (the number of wild animals halved in the last 40 years), the turning of our oceans into a plastic soup, the trashing of our soils.
High levels of mental ill health in the young - with the rate of depression having doubled in the past decade - are a symptom of the world we're living in.
Students particularly are suffering from the commercialisation of universities and colleges, the impact of zero-hours contracts on academics and the quality of education they provide, and the narrowing of subjects on offer. Beyond tuition fees, the loss of grants and bursaries is forcing out many, and leaving others having to spend so long in jobs that its tremendously difficult for them to focus on their studies.
We owe our young people futures in which they can have security and freedom from fear. There's enough resources on this planet for everyone to have a decent life. To achieve that we need to allocate them fairly and use them well.
Education is a public good, which should be paid for from general progressive taxation. Young people should not be starting life weighed down by a huge weight of unpayable debt.
Our schools can provide an education for life, not just exams. That means abolishing SATs and Ofsted, and valuing and supporting creative and practical subjects.
Everyone needs a secure, stable, genuinely affordable roof over their head. For people in private rental accommodation, the reality instead is often high costs, poor quality, and instability.
Jobs you can build a life on pay a real living wage, provide security and the possibility of advancement and development. That's not what's available to many young people today.