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From The Socialist newspaper, 19 March 2014

Fight for real jobs for young people

Join the day of action on 29 March

Sick of Your Boss? Youth Fight for Jobs campaigning, photo Nancy Taaffe

Sick of Your Boss? Youth Fight for Jobs campaigning, photo Nancy Taaffe   (Click to enlarge)

Helen Pattison, London Youth Fight for Jobs

As budget day approached, mainstream politicians and media were scrambling around to look good or mud sling on the issue of youth unemployment and the economy in general.

Headlines screamed about the "huge economic growth" of 3% we might see over the next year. The Telegraph is peddling the propaganda from the government that youth unemployment isn't as bad as figures suggest and that more people are in work than have been for a year.

The British Chambers of Commerce is publicly calling on Osborne to make sure that the budget focuses on youth joblessness, with tax breaks to encourage investment and money for big businesses that are nice enough to give a job to a young person.

Labour no alternative

Youth Fight for Jobs protests against zero-hour contracts outside Sports Direct, photo Paul Mattsson

Youth Fight for Jobs protests against zero-hour contracts outside Sports Direct, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Labour has re-pledged its 'youth guarantee' - promising a six month job for all 18-24 year olds out of work for a year - supposedly funded by a one-off levy of bankers' bonuses.

Labour's shadow housing minister was forced to admit this plan would mean the party would have to re-think using this money to fund house-building as had previously been promised.

The big businesses that take part would not have to pay a penny of wages. And of course it won't actually create any new jobs so the vast majority of participants would be out on their ear at the end of the placement.

All this talk is just a smoke screen to hide the continued misery young people face of a jobless or slave-wage future - nothing has changed on the ground.

The jobs that have been created have been measly zero-hour contracts or part-time work on minimum wage pay.

Fast Food Rights

But, offering inspiration to young workers and unemployed people here, the fight for a $15 an hour minimum wage in the US rages on (see report on right).

Now Youth Fight for Jobs, has teamed up with others, including the Bakers and Allied Food Workers Union, to begin building something similar here by setting up Fast Food Rights.

Bakers union workers (BFAWU) at the TUC demonstration in Manchester against Tory Party conference 29/09/13 demands Save our NHS, photo Paul Mattsson

Bakers union workers (BFAWU) at the TUC demonstration in Manchester against Tory Party conference 29/09/13 demands Save our NHS, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

The campaign has been targeting McDonalds, Burger King and Costa. The bakers' union wrote to them all asking for the chance to come in and discuss with their workers about joining a union.

McDonalds replied that their workers were perfectly happy, but when we leafleted their stores in Oxford Street, London, management ripped leaflets from the hands of staff and kicked us out.

The next Fast Food Rights day of action is on 29 March when up and down the country low-paid workers and their supporters will be protesting on high streets and in shopping centres for better pay, an end to zero-hour contracts and for trade union rights.

Check for details of events near you on the day of action

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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.
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In The Socialist 19 March 2014:

Socialist Party news and analysis

Smash the pay freeze

Tony Benn: steadfast in speaking out for socialism

After Bob Crow and Tony Benn: We fight on!

No to bosses' EU - For a socialist Europe

Unite to end racism and cuts

Osborne's more cuts budget

Oxfam report: A tale of capitalist inequality

Them & Us

International socialist news and analysis

Crimea referendum will not deliver peace and stability

South Africa: WASP registers for the 2014 elections

Activists in the US demand $15 Now!

Socialist Party workplace news

Defend education: Solidarity with teachers' strike

Doncaster care workers determined to win

Ealing hospital workers fight miserly Medirest

Workplace news in brief

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Fight for real jobs for young people

Election Appeal: Put your money where the struggle is!

Get your May Day Greetings in

Pensioner jailed for non-payment

TUSC campaigning in Derby

Obituary: Stan Pearce, a Militant miner

Readers' comments and reviews

Review: Call the Midwife

Genetic Modification: A contribution to the debate


Home   |   The Socialist 19 March 2014   |   Join the Socialist Party

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Related links:


triangleThailand: Youth rising against hated junta

triangleJobs, training, pay, we want a future!

triangleNo Covid penalty on our future

triangleBristol North Socialist Party: Real jobs and training for youth

triangleEngage for Change Hull - trade union youth festival goes online

Young people:

triangleJob Support Scheme - too little, too late

triangleCardiff West Socialist Party: What's the future for young people?

triangleNorth East lockdown: simmering anger at Tory incompetence

triangleCovid generation says 'fund our future'


triangleTory scheme won't halt mass unemployment: mobilise the unions!

triangleCaerphilly & RCT Socialist Party: The fight for jobs

triangleAfter Scottish government U-turn, Young Socialists fight for a future on A-Level results day


trianglePeterborough CWU have massively voted for strike action

triangleUsdaw elections: Defend members' right to participate


triangleSolidarity not charity


triangleNHS workers need 15% rise and full funding


triangleWandsworth Town McDonald's strike protest. Tuesday 12th November 2019. Photo Isai Priya

Youth Fight for Jobs:

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

Minimum wage:

triangleCallous Tories threaten not to uprate the minimum wage

Zero-hour contracts:

triangleLabour and the fight for a shorter working week


triangleMay Day McStrike: "A symbol for all workers"

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