‘Politics is too important to be left to politicians’ stated Ed Miliband earlier this year when he came to visit Hallam for a Q&A
With just three days left until election day and with Russel Brand recently urging voters to support Labour in order to keep the conservative party out, here’s what Ed Milliband had to say when he visited Sheffield Hallam a few months ago.
What’s your opinion on David Cameron being too scared to speak on live TV?’ First question of the day was met with laughs and Ed’s response: ‘let’s have more like that please!’
There was a lot spoken or broken promises, something that most students can relate to after the last election. Milliband was very careful and cautious not to make any false promises saying ‘Unlike Nick Clegg we will keep the promises we make and we won’t make promised before the election and then break them afterwards’.
When asked on one thing that he does promise to change however he said ‘Careers for all young people’, his emphasis on young people and them being the future was paramount throughout the talk. He also stated that Labour ‘will rescue and renew our national health service’, again stating that Labour ‘are going to keep our promises’
It was clear that a better future for young people was at the top of his list he plans to improve this by; giving people age 16 and 17 the chance to vote and that Labour will now lead a national issue to allow young people a voice in this election. Again speaking about broken promises he said ‘this government has betrayed young people, I am determined to do it differently’. While admitting that he sometimes finds it hard not to get caught up in the fiery debates in parliament he also said that ‘youth parliament is much better behaved than the house of commons’. Careers and advice service for students has been the biggest disaster of this government, this is of course in relation to EMA stopping and many of the careers and advice jobs being cut meaning that there isn’t much guidance anymore for students on their future. Milliband also stated that if 16 and 17 years olds were allowed to vote that EMA might still be around. He also stated that ‘Labour will have incentives from organisations in order to help young people get into work’.
Speaking about education, work, university and vocational routes he said ‘I want to look at what we can do for post graduate funding, I don’t want to make any false promises’ and that we have got to find a way to get better help for young careers’. His focus was not only on a better education system but that we also have ‘Got to have proper information for vocational roots’. He also mentioned that with a system that we have that you have to ‘work with people to them back into work’. Hopefully he gained more insight into what undergraduates and post graduates need by the questions he asked the room. He also talked about improving education in a wide range of areas including ‘citizenship education’. He also discussed mental health issues and the impact they have on so many young people today stating ‘Mental health issues are not something to be embarrassed about’. While briefly touching on rent and taking notes on what students said about their current rent ‘People need to have predictable rent not worry if it will go up or down from month to month’.
Speaking about equality Miliband was very clear on his views concerning gender equality announcing that he ‘won’t stop until all Labour Party roles are 50% women’. He also spoke about finding a proper gender ‘when it comes to the house of commons’. ‘I want to pay tribute to the feminist movement and the issue on everyday sexism; it is about educating people by starting early and in schools’. On prejudice and immigration he simply said ‘we’ve got to stand up against prejudice and hate wherever we find it’, these statements were well received by the crowd. He also spoke about how we must be ‘treating people in the system as human beings’ and that more help and education has to be available in these areas.
Making sure he finished with a question from a student, as opposed to many of the press that was there was also well received as was his # Round of applause’ for Hallam!’.
For more information on any of the parties manifestos if you’re still unsure on who to vote then make sure to check them out online before May 7th.
Make sure that you know exactly where your polling station is and happy voting everyone, remember that young people are the future and your vote can make a different on Thursday!
Words by: Roseanne May Cross