Young people often get bad press as a disengaged rabble, more concerned with boozing than the key political debates of the day. The truth is that all of us are invested in political issues, particularly when it comes to prospects for our futures.
In 2010, Labour left us with a note: “there’s no money left.” Even more serious was what had happened to the fabric of our society. They had presided over an elite paying less tax than their cleaners, those in the middle picking up the tab for Labour’s Great Recession, and those at the bottom trapped in a cycle of benefit dependency.
The Conservative Party taken the country from one in five households being workless, to an economy creating more jobs than then rest of Europe put together. Here in Exeter there has been a staggering 58% fall in unemployment over the past five years. Dom Morris, your candidate for Exeter, is striving to bring this down even further, as was shown in his Jobs Fair last Friday.
For students specifically, graduate prospects are now at their best in over a decade. 80% of new jobs are full-time, professional level jobs. Or if you want to stay at university, we have brought in loans of to £10,000 for those under 30 doing a postgraduate taught masters course in any subject. So what whatever you want to do with your degree, there are more appealing options than ever to choose from.
And let’s not ignore the elephant in the room: tuition fees. What we’ve done is made university funding fairer. We’ve made repayments back (not front) loaded and proportional to your income. Crucially, rather than putting students off, there are now more students from disadvantaged backgrounds than ever before. It protects the value of the degree we get, which comes from the funding for the world-class teaching and research at Exeter.
Or there’s the Labour option: re-mortgaging our futures through more government debt to pay for an un-costed proposals.
As we leave university over the coming five years, many of us will be dreaming of owning our own homes one day. Schemes like Starter Homes and Help to Buy mean that first-time buyers don’t need generous parents to get on the property ladder. Dom Morris has also prioritised finding a collaborative solution to the unacceptable and immoral levels of homelessness in our city.
A vote for the Conservatives is a vote to save ourselves from the chaos of the Red Ed’s, held to ransom by the self-interested Scottish nationalists at every turn. More importantly, Dom Morris is coming into politics because people are fed up with out-of-touch career politicians who make decisions on issues they don’t understand. Making politics accessible to people with experience beyond the M25 is critical to combat the disillusionment that puts young people off politics.
With nearly a quarter of the constituency made up of students in this marginal seat, the fate of Exeter – and ultimately the country – is in our hands.