Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/683/12681

From The Socialist newspaper, 31 August 2011

We won't be a lost generation - fight for jobs and education


March for jobs

www.youthfightforjobs.com
We won't be a lost generation

We won't be a lost generation   (Click to enlarge)

"Jobless figures show the real risk of creating a lost generation," read a headline in the Evening Standard on 17 August. The student protests, the explosion of anger in August, rising youth unemployment and the scramble for university places have meant that 2011 has already proved what Youth Fight for Jobs (YFJ) has been saying since it was established in 2009.

Here YFJ explains just some of the ways that young people are being made to pay for the bankers' crisis and puts forward some measures necessary to give all young people the chance of a decent future.

We don't accept the argument that there's no money available. Why should we pay with our jobs and services?

Bankers are still taking home huge bonuses. The banks are back to making billions in profits. And the parliament that defends them has been shown to be riddled with corruption through the MPs' expenses scandal and 'Murdochgate'.

Young people are angry. And many are starting to get organised. 50 young people will march from Jarrow to London from 1 October to 5 November and will be joined by thousands on protests and demonstrations in towns and cities along the route.

The Jarrow march is just the start. We need a national student demonstration this term to show the government that students haven't gone away or given up on reversing the fees increase.

And we need a one-day general strike of the whole public sector on the issue of attacks on workers' pensions (which, by forcing older people to work for longer, will increase youth unemployment) to really pile the pressure on the government to halt its austerity programme.

We want investment in young people's futures, starting with action on all the demands listed here. But we also want more. This government, like previous ones, has proved itself incapable of running society in the interests of the majority.

Workers, young people, students, the unemployed - we know what we need and we know how best to deliver it. Why can't we - the majority - be in control of the resources in society and democratically decide where they need to go? That's what we're fighting for - a society where ordinary people's futures aren't dependent on speculators and businessmen.

If you agree and want to join YFJ or take part in the Jarrow march in any way, get in touch:

www.youthfightforjobs.com

www.jarrowmarch11.com

youthfightforjobs@gmail.com

020 8558 7947


Jobs

The August unemployment figures showed a 'shock' jump in youth unemployment of 32,000 compared to the July figures. 20.2% of 16 to 24 year olds are looking for work. And of those who are in work, more than ever are only working part time because they can't find a full time job.

The figures were anything but a shock to YFJ. The government and local councils are cutting 750,000 jobs from the public sector.

They say the private sector will pick up the slack and yet it seems like a new shop drops off the high street every week and 60 billion is sitting in British banks ready to be invested in new machinery but not moving because of 'lack of confidence'.

The Con-Dem government's response is pathetic. They plan to increase the number of internships available to young people - and promise to 'ask' for wages or expenses. At the request of McDonalds and others, they are reducing the requirements of employers who provide apprenticeships.

So young people who can't find a job because of government policies are not only criticised for being 'lazy' but are expected to work for free without complaint!

YFJ demands:

Education

Millions of young people have just received exam results.

Those who have just finished their GCSEs don't have an easy path ahead. The small amount that was previously available to help with the costs of going to college or sixth form - EMA - was scrapped in the government's Comprehensive Spending Review.

People desperate to avoid 2012's fee increase have been scrambling to find a university place through clearing.

But more than 200,000 applicants will be left disappointed because of the government's cap on places. Many of them will have received good exam results but are stopped from learning purely because of a decision of successive governments that education is not a right to be enjoyed by all.

Future generations will surely see even more talented and keen young people kept away from universities.

The average graduate debt for students who start in 2012 and pay up to 9,000 a year is expected to be 53,400. That's an unimaginable cost for many working class young people.

And attacks at every level of education have seen teaching and support staff lose their jobs while quality of education is cut to the bone.

YFJ demands:

Youth services

In Haringey, where the August riots started, eight out of 13 youth clubs have been closed because of council cuts.

More than 40 local councils say that youth services have taken the biggest hit from the cuts.

Unite, the union that represents many youth workers, estimates that 3,000 will lose their jobs as a result of 100 million of cuts to youth services over the next three years.

These cuts will be devastating and are being made despite countless warnings that they will result in an increase in anti-social behaviour, gang crime and social breakdown.

Particularly when young people face long term unemployment, lack of education opportunities and all the other barriers put in their paths, youth services play an important part in giving working class young people a sense of self-worth and being part of a community.

YFJ demands:

Benefits

The benefits system is perhaps the clearest demonstration of the disproportionate difficulties young people face. Benefits are inadequate for a decent life but for young people they are particularly so.

The Con-Dems have increased the age someone can claim enough money for their own flat from 25 to 35, one of their biggest attacks.

Under 18 year olds can't claim Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA) or housing benefit and between 18 and 24 JSA is a measly 53.45 a week.

And these scraps don't come for free either! For example, those claiming JSA have to jump through endless hoops or risk losing their claim. Many are now forced to take part in the Work Programme (after just nine months unemployed for under 25s).

The Work Programme involves a 'work placement' where the claimant may have to work up to 30 hours a week in order to receive their usual dole - meaning working for about a third of the minimum wage. Why would companies hire someone when the government sends them free slave labour?

YFJ demands:

Housing

The private renting sector has grown by 40% in five years, mainly as young people find they have no chance of affording a mortgage. Rents are at a record high averaging 705 a month and are expected to rise by another 10% in the next year.

This has led, for example, to an 81% increase in the number of couples looking to share with others because they can't afford a place of their own.

Noses in the trough alongside big landlords are the banks who profit through mortgage repayments. But the government has a huge say in what the banks do and should move to cut down on profiteering out of the basic human right to a home.

A Shelter survey investigating the impact of the cost of housing on 18-34 year olds shows that 22% of them have been forced to move back in with, or continue living with, their parents because they can't afford to rent or buy their own home. 20% of this age group are delaying having children until they can afford to buy or rent their own home.

In the past, the cost of housing could be partially overcome for many by applying for a council house. But successive Labour and Tory governments have sold millions of council houses to residents and housing associations.

House building is at its lowest peace time level since just after World War One and the government plans a 63% cut in funding for social house building with future homes to be at near-market rents.

Nearly five million people in England alone are on council house waiting lists while 200,000 construction workers' skills are wasted in the dole queue.

YFJ demands:

Donate to the Socialist Party

Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 31 August 2011:


Fighting public sector cuts

Mass action can stop the cuts

Con-Dems out to destroy NHS

Housing crisis wrecks people's lives

A warning from the FE sector - hands off our education!


Socialist Party editorial

The riots and the aftermath


Socialist Party news and analysis

Gaddafi regime crumbles

'Murdochgate' places Cameron under spotlight

'Broken Britain'...

Fast News


Socialist Party youth and students

We won't be a lost generation - fight for jobs and education


Socialist Party workplace news

Plymouth Unison - Battle to reverse de-recognition - Solidarity needed!

31st August - further day of protest by construction workers

Tyne and Wear: Churchill Metro workers begin fightback

South Yorkshire Newspapers strike now in seventh week

Youth workers strike across Oxfordshire

Part time workers and the great job con


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Keep EDL out!

6,500 Swansea children in poverty

Socialist Party summer camp

Newcastle-under-Lyme Socialist Party is now up and running!


Socialist Party review

Why Marx was right


 

Home   |   The Socialist 31 August 2011   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

Jobs:

triangleEssential workers deserve more

triangleNationalise to save jobs threatened by Covid-19 and downturn

triangle500 BBC journalists' jobs under threat

triangle6.5 million working poor: Fight to end low pay

triangleThem & Us

Education:

triangleSchools: union oversight needed to end chaos in provision under coronavirus

triangleSolidarity with striking university staff

triangleStudents and workers out together on Budget Day, 11 March

triangleRoyal Mail workers in the Communication Workers' Union (CWU) supporting a 'yes' vote in a reballot for strike action, Leicester Meridian, 25.2.20, photo by Steve Score

Benefits:

triangleFight for safety, staffing and services - Covid chaos for benefits claimants

trianglePCS union demands better deal for benefits claimants

triangleCoronavirus - a workers charter 2020

Housing:

triangle'Worst crisis in housing since World War Two' - Barking Riverside inquiry into fire

triangleSelf-isolation class divide: decent homes for all!

Youth:

triangle'Roses are red, violets are blue, BP and Shell - we're coming for you'

Young people:

triangleYoung people who voted for Corbyn's manifesto will now ask... How can we win those ideas?

YFJ:

triangleYFJ to join 'free education' demo

Apprenticeships:

triangleThem & Us

Youth Fight for Jobs:

triangleJarrow March: an inspiring show of solidarity between workers and youth

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

8/4/20

Labour Party

End of the Corbyn era - Organise to fight for socialist policies

8/4/20

Government

Workers take action while union leaders call truce with government and bosses

8/4/20

Coronavirus

Under the microscope: Pandemic news in brief

8/4/20

Coronavirus

Tory lies cost lives

8/4/20

NHS

Dispatches from the front: shortages of NHS staff, equipment - and union leadership

8/4/20

Public ownership

Capitalism causes crisis profiteering: fight for workers' oversight and public ownership

8/4/20

Workers

EE puts workers' health and safety at risk

6/4/20

Labour

End of the Corbyn era

1/4/20

Coronavirus

As coronavirus crisis intensifies, class antagonisms deepen

1/4/20

Coronavirus

NHS supply chain worker: privatisation has cut equipment quantity and quality

1/4/20

Coronavirus

NHS workers speak out: austerity has left us unprepared

1/4/20

Coronavirus

PPE, Tests, Full pay - for all now

1/4/20

Coronavirus

New laws: Unions must be on guard against attacks on workers' interests

1/4/20

Coronavirus

Labour must resist 'Covid coalition'

31/3/20

Coronavirus

Coronavirus news in brief

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 07748 534 891

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999