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Highlight keywords  |Print this articlePrint this article
From: The Socialist issue 748, 16 January 2013: Mass action to save our NHS

Search site for keywords: Youth - Jobs - Youth Fight for Jobs - Apprenticeships

Tory minister lies about 'lategate'...

... and offers no solution to youth joblessness

Well-rested Tory Business Minister, Matthew Hancock, who overslept and missed a TV debate with Youth Fight for Jobs supporter, Ian Pattison, has lied about how late he actually was. Hancock's "30 second" gaffe is more like Hancock's half hour.

Ian said: "I arrived at the ITV's breakfast show Daybreak, at 6am, while the Minister was still asleep in bed.

"Matthew Hancock has tried to claim he was only 30 seconds late, but this is not the case. As Daybreak presenter, Matt Barbet, has said, the Tory MP was much later than that.

"If the minister was a jobseeker, he could lose his benefits for up to three months for such an offcnce.

"Hancock's Traineeship scheme is the latest gimmick coming out of the Tories to disguise the fact they have failed to tackle the staggering problems of unemployment affecting young people.

"Hancock and his government are trying to shift the blame for youth unemployment away from them and their failed system, and onto the unemployed.

"Young people are not lazy. In fact, it is the Tories' cuts agenda that is worsening the economic crisis, slashing jobs in the public and private sector.

Research has revealed that it is harder to get an apprenticeship than get into Oxbridge. Hancock claims his Traineeships are a stepping stone to apprenticeships, but the whole point of an apprenticeship is to provide people with the training they need for a job. Hancock's scheme doesn't create any new jobs, or even promise any apprenticeships.

"Youth Fight for Jobs would still like to put the campaign's views on his traineeship scheme to the minister.

We'd like to challenge him to a debate on the scheme and the rest of his government's policies on youth unemployment; any time, any place, one that Matthew Hancock can wake up for. Hopefully he will turn up on time!"

Youth Fight for Jobs calls for:

  • A massive government scheme to create socially useful jobs and apprenticeships which pay at least the minimum wage (with no youth exemptions) and offer guaranteed jobs at the end
  • Scrap all work-for-your dole schemes. Unemployed people should not be used as slave labour. If a job needs doing, someone should be employed for a proper wage to do it
  • An end to job losses. We need huge investment in public services and the nationalisation of companies threatening closure, under democratic control

See www.youthfightforjobs.com for the rest of the YFJ programme and how to get involved in the campaign


The cruel reality behind the unemployment figures

Today I was being taught the new 'conditionalities' of signing on. One of which was a commitment to remove 'scientific journalism' from one of my job goals if I remain unsuccessful two weeks from now.

I broke down in tears. I cried for ten minutes. My support worker was sympathetic. She asked why I was so upset and I told her that I started education late in life because I suffered domestic violence and it knocked the confidence out of me.

I then worked and studied for seven years to get GCSEs, A-levels and finally a BSc in neuroscience.

I explained that I did all of this and sacrificed so much time and even relationships so that I could earn more and have a job that was meaningful.

I would have liked to go on and read graduate medicine but 9,000 a year is too steep. I'm 30, black, living with my mother and unemployed in spite of six months of searching.

To be penalised any more for a lack of work for which I've spent seven years training fills me with despair. I feel powerless and aimless and muted.

I can't keep hoping someone else will speak or act on my behalf. My predicament has led me to the Socialist Party.

Mark, a jobseeker in London






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