Why the Liberal Youth plays an important part within the Liberal Democrats.

The Liberal youth. What does that mean to you? To me it shows that the Liberal Democrats care about giving young people a voice within politics.

I remember first hearing about the Liberal youth from my old MP and I thought “Hmmm, maybe I could sign up!”. Since then I have never looked back. With the Liberal Youth elections coming up with me running to become part of the policy committee within the Liberal youth, I felt it was important to highlight the massive part it plays within the Liberal Democrats.

In a nut shell the Liberal Youth are the youth and student wing within the Liberal Democrats. Giving young people and students the chance to express their views and make sure their voices are heard within the party. As other parties such as Labour and the Conservatives also have youth and students wings of the party such as Young Labour and Young Conservatives.

It also allows young people to take on responsibilities in running this side of the party. Which can give them great experience for a career within politics and showing that the younger generation really do care about the future of their country.

I’m looking forward to taking part in the Liberal Youth election and hopefully win enough votes to become a member of the policy committee as I would like to make a difference within the Liberal Youth and of course the Liberal  Democrats. Hopefully helping loads of other young and student members like myself along the way and inspire them to take an active role within politics, the party and the future of the Liberal Youth.

I spoke to Liberal Youth candidate for international officer Terry White and asked what the Liberal Youth means to him and how he sees it plays a massive part within the party. This is what Terry had to say:

“I believe Liberal Youth is a significant part of the Liberal Democrats. Liberal Youth can create significant noise at election time and contributes key ideas to our manifesto. I remember at the Norwich North by-election prior to the 2010 general election, key members of Liberal Youth such as Alex Royden were key to the energy at election HQ. Members like Martin Shapland were great representatives to our sister parties across the globe and former chairs such as Elaine Bagshaw are now energetic candidates and I hope Elaine does well in running for Mayor of Tower Hamlets. Of course, Liberal Youth have also created fantastic MPs such as Jo Swinson and I dearly hope she wins back her seat she represented ever so well. Liberal Youth doesn’t just make the future of the Liberal Democrats, it makes the noise.”

So as you can see the Liberal Youth has and always will continue to play a massive part within the Liberal Democrats. I know that the Liberal Youth will become stronger and stronger over the years. Let the nominates for the Liberal Youth election begin!

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Why 16 and 17 year olds should be given the right to vote!

If any of you have been following my blog since the very beginning. You will know that my first ever article was my view on if 16 and 17 year olds should be allowed to vote in the EU referendum. And of course I think they should be given the right to vote in the EU referendum. But what about voting as a whole? Well, my view is very much still the same. 16 and 17 year olds SHOULD be given the right to vote. And so think the Liberal Democrats.

Many a times I have heard from the older generation saying that 16 and 17 year olds shouldn’t be given the right to vote because in their eyes they haven’t ‘lived’ yet or they don’t really know what it is all about until they have actually lived under different governments. Nonsense!  Many 16 and 17 year olds I know have a great interest in politics as they care about their future and the future of Britain.

As we live in a democracy, everybody is entitled to their opinion and having their voice heard. What does it matter if your 16 or even 66? Your opinion is just as important. Many issues that are raised in government will effect the younger generation. Such as the rise in tuition fees and the EU referendum.

I also think that if 16 and 17 year olds were allowed to vote in the 2015 general election. The results would have been different. As I feel that the Liberal Democrats would have kept more of their seats as I know many 16 and 17 year olds who support the principles of liberalism and the Liberal Democrats as a party. As well as the Green Party and Labour.

16 and 17 year olds were allowed to vote in Scotland with the vote of whether they wanted to become a independent country. What makes any other election different? It’s still putting a cross into a box about your opinion on a countries decision.

Abby Tomlinson, the creator of Milifandom is living proof that the younger generation are interested in politics. Even though she is a Labour member. I admire her dedicated and courage to stand up for the younger generation and basically say to the Conservatives “Look, we do care why can’t you see that too!” I just wish more teenagers were like Abby, then maybe the Conservatives and David Cameron would finally listen to us and give us the vote that we want and deserve.

Such groups as the Liberal Youth as well is proof that we do have an interest. With many younger people taking active roles within that group, such as a good friend of mine Nathan Goldsmith who is the treasurer for the Liberal  Youth. There needs to be more groups like the Liberal Youth to give younger people a political voice.

Another movement that allows to give young people a voice within politics is the Youth parliament. Which again just like the Liberal Youth, is an absolute treasure in showing that younger people do care.

It’s our future! It’s not the strongest argument in the world. But in my opinion it’s the only argument we need. I just only wish David Cameron and his Conservative government saw it like that too.

The Green Deal: “Cutting carbon is not a luxury to be ditched when the going gets tough!”

Back in 2011, when I was a very young supporter of the Liberal Democrats. I knew back then that I certainly had a passion for one thing as well as mental health. Our environment. So you would not have believed how delighted I was when I watched former MP for Eastleigh and Secretary of Energy and Climate change Chris Huhne announce  the governments Green Deal plan, that the Conservatives have now cut.

As you can seen the Conservatives are already unravelling the good that the Liberal Democrats did during our time in government alongside the Conservatives. This deal in my opinion, helped us to become the greenest government ever between 2010 and 2015. Even though this deal was put in action not until 2013 as part of the 2011 Energy Act. This deal was a good deal!

In a nutshell, the green deal was put in place to help households within Britain make energy-saving improvements to their home and find the best way to pay for them. The Green Deal could help determine if your house could save energy by having such things as

  • insulation, eg solid wall, cavity wall or loft insulation
  • heating
  • draught-proofing
  • double glazing
  • renewable energy generation, eg solar panels

During his speech, there was one line from Chris that drew me to this deal straight away. “Cutting carbon is not a luxury to be ditched when the going gets tough, it is essential to the survival of man kind as a species.” So Mr Cameron. Why would you cut such an amazing plan, that is meant to benefit so many people who may not be able to afford sustainable sources of energy to help people keep a warm maintained house? Whilst also helping to improve the environment.

The green deal also created new jobs in renewable energy, as there are now million of jobs available within low carbon services within Britain and new jobs within heating.Thanks to the Green Deal, thanks to Chris and most importantly, thanks to the Liberal Democrats.

With Chris at the 2011 conference mentioning in his speech that  three hundred thousand people every month leaving the unemployment register with thousands of those people finding jobs within the low carbon economy. Now that is progress! With not forgetting that “Green business, is good business!” 

This plan was set out to improve the people of Britains energy bills, health but also helping to keep our environment safe and renewable. In my opinion the Conservatives have been absolute idiots in ditching this plan that would, help the working people of Britain save money on energy, find safe ways of creating energy without posing a risk to our environment. But most importantly save the government money on energy resources that could been spent as Chris mentioned on British jobs.

Focusing away from The Green Deal for a second and focusing on something Chris said during his speech. The Conservatives still need to get tougher with the big six energy companies by making tariffs more simpler and making it mandatory for energy companies to let you know if you would be better off on another tariff, as many households rarely have the time to search for themselves for cheaper energy tariffs. With OfGem regulators saying that many household could be up to £200 better off a year if they switched to a lowest costing tariff. This would save many households within Britain hard earned money which could be spent on other essentials.

In my opinion, having affordable energy would benefit the older generation the most, as having heat will keep them warm and at a lesser risk of health problems during the winter months.

So come on Mr Cameron. Get your new Secretary for Energy and Climate change to start doing some work to help British households. And maybe think about what you are doing by unravelling the good the Liberal  Democrats did whilst you are at it.

Mental Health: Time The Tories realised!

As Liberal Democrats, we all have one thing in common. We care about the mental health of others. During the coalition government, between 2010 and 2015. Two million people were treated for mental health problems as a result of access to talking therapies being improved. That in my opinion is a coalition positive!

As the ran up to polling day in the 2015 general election began. The Liberal  Democrats made one thing clear in their manifesto. Mental health will never be ignored.By making such motions as increasing the mental health budget for the NHS by £500 million, increase access to talking therapies to hundreds of thousands more people, with a long-term goal of everyone who can benefit being treated and specific proposals to improve mental health services for children, pregnant women and new mothers. This I feel the Liberal Democrats if in government, would have carried these promises out with great success.

During this current government we all need to work together to do a very important thing. Make the Tories realise mental health is just as important as physical health.

As of today, one in four people will suffer for a mental health problem in the course of one year. It shocks me to know that up to a quarter of the words population within one year will suffer from a mental health problem. With the most common who suffer from a mental health problem live in Britain.

Many people fear that they may not be taken seriously by a medical professional if they feel that they have a mental health problem so just decide to keep it hidden. This is something that must stop! The government should be investing more money into charities such as mind and rethink so that they are able to continue the amazing work that they already do.

Charities are so important within the mental health system. As without them I have a feeling that many people would be unable to have access to support that can help them come to terms with their mental health problem and continue with day to day life. As I know how much a mental health problem can effect you from even doing the basic things in life. Such as leaving the house or interacting within social groups.

In the Conservatives 2015 general election manifesto. They made such promises to improve mental services within the NHS by

  • Ensuring that women have access to mental health support during and after pregnancy.
  • Ensuring that psychological therapists are available in every part of the country.
  • Increase funding for mental health care

So Mr Cameron, when are these promises actually going to be carried out? How much are you going to improve the funding by? And would you like to thank the Liberal Democrats at all for being the once to actually improve mental health services whilst you were in government with them? Because without the Liberal Democrats, I have a feeling that mental health would have been ignored and improvements would not have been made.

I would also like to see Heath Secretary Mr Jeremy Hunt address mental health within the NHS, as I feel that he ignores it. Remember Jeremy it’s your job to find ways to improve the system that is meant to help people get back to normal health. Wether that’s physical health or mental health. That would be a great way to score some brownie points with the great British public since you are already doing your job so badly.

As long as I am a Liberal Democrat. I will always continue to help fight the Conservatives and hopefully finally make them realise that mental health, is just as important as physical health.

I have a feeling that if we scream loud enough, our voices will be heard!