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From: The Socialist issue 721, 6 June 2012: NHS cuts... Pension cuts... RESIST CUTS!

Search site for keywords: EMA - Youth - Young people - Stoke

Campaigning for EMA and youth services

Recently complaints have been made to local police about young people hanging around outside shops on King Street, Kidsgrove, near Stoke. This can be intimidating for local residents and groups have been dispersed by the police.

However, while this may solve the immediate issue, it does not tackle the root causes of the problem. Take a look at local employment figures, youth facilities or an evening bus timetable and it's clear how little meaningful activity is on offer for the young.

Youth unemployment in the last year has increased across Newcastle-Under-Lyme by a staggering 13% and those with jobs are often forced to take fewer hours than they want or jobs for which they are hugely overqualified.

The government's solution to this? Unpaid or poorly paid 'apprenticeships' in shop work etc which offer no guarantees of a job afterwards and very little in the way of directed learning.

The government scrapping of EMA student payments has meant local youth struggle to find money for the travel, equipment and food they need to continue in education after 16 - 500 fewer young people enrolled at Stoke-on-Trent college this year.

So the Socialist Party has launched a petition calling on our local councillors to fight for Newcastle-Under-Lyme council to restore EMA to give our young people a better chance and to improve youth services in Kidsgrove to help give youth a meaningful role in our society.

If you live in the area and want petitions to use or to find out more about our campaign please call/text Becky on 07968598048

Becky Carter

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