Young People on the receiving end yet again of political and economic dogma

Following the budget a number of articles have appeared lamenting the government’s attitude to young people.

Ta to
Ta to

What have young people done to Osborne to deserve such contempt? by Polly Toynbee

She begins:

Why are the young caught in the cross-hairs of this government? That will mystify future social historians. Most societies talk of them as “our future”, to be nurtured and encouraged, but in yesterday’s budget, yet again they were pursued in a special vendetta of dislike, bordering on disgust.

She ends:

In his time, Osborne has stripped the young of education maintenance allowances, shrunk tax credits, child benefits, upped tuition fees, cut further education colleges and careers advice while stripping away youth services. But above all, he and his party have monstered the young. Nice young people now stay home until their 30s, unable to find housing. Nice families stay together forever. The children of the rest are blamed and punished.

Budget 2015: A shameless, unmitigated attack on the poor, the young and families by Siobhan Fenton

She notes:

The Budget not only attacks young, poor families but attempts to sanction young people too. If you’re from a poor family and you want to go to university, your maintenance grant no longer exists. They grant system has been swept away and replaced by loans. But if you now can’t afford to go to university and have to stay at home and try to work, the new minimum wage doesn’t apply to you because it only affects over 25s. Over 25s will be paid more than under 25s for the exact same job. And when not having fair wages means you struggle to pay your rent, the government will now deny you housing benefit until you’re 21. This triad of policies will hit young people from every angle and make it next to impossible to have a fair start in life.

And in  this video

Kelly, aged 19, who lives in a YMCA, gives her take on the Chancellor’s decision to end automatic entitlement for 18-21 year olds.

 “If they cut housing benefit, we’re going to be out on the streets and in danger.”

Channel 4 News.


  1. Siobhan points out the obvious contradictions in govenment policy in respect of young people and shows the gaping hole in the meritocratic pretensions of the ruling classes whose children will be shielded from these measures. This is simple class warfare.

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