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Opinion: We can’t allow government to fail the young

PUBLISHED: 08:00 12 August 2018

Jon Cruddas

Jon Cruddas

Archant

Last week the Labour Party unveiled bold new plans to rebuild youth services across the country, after nearly a decade of Tory cuts have left services on their knees.

Direct government funding to local authorities has fallen by half since 2010, and youth services have seen significant cutbacks as councils seek to make savings.

In the period 2011-2017 Havering Council cut youth services by 75.4per cent. A whole generation in our local area are £2.9million worse off because of Tory austerity.

The cuts in youth services have risen dramatically over the past five years and we can no longer sit back and allow the government to fail our young people.

Labour are proposing to introduce new legislation which requires every local authority across England to provide a minimum level of support for young people.

To make this happen a Labour government will establish a national body with dedicated ring-fenced funding to oversee youth service provision.

Youth services are a valuable investment.

They are an investment in the future, providing young people with the opportunity to succeed.

Not only this but they have a vital role to play in combating crime – a 2016 survey of young people in the workplace showed that 83per cent believed cuts to youth services were leading to a rise in crime and anti-social behaviour.

The Tories are failing young people in Havering. They are failing our communities.

And they are creating conditions where crime can thrive, leaving young people vulnerable to violence and denied the opportunity to build a positive future.

Our young people deserve change. Havering deserves better.

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