Wefan Gymraeg

Christoph Fischer on why students should vote

Why should students bother to vote?


The referendum was decided by the older generation, depriving the younger people of the future they desired. The choices Theresa May is making now will affect your Brexit-riddled life even further: your job prospects, your freedoms, your privacy, your civil and human rights, your bank balance, the level of pollution of the environment you and your children will live in, quality and access to health services, education and how your parents will be looked after.

It's not too late to get a say over the deal Theresa May plans to negotiate with Europe. Student exchange programmes like Erasmus, International research projects and your ability to work abroad are at stake and it should be you who gets to decide whether such a deal is worth any possible gains from leaving the EU.

The Conservative manifesto includes some grave invasion into social media and privacy laws and endangers civil and human rights that the younger generation has taken for granted. How the gap between those willing to surrender control to an authoritarian Prime Minister and the more liberal youth plays out on polling day will decide how harsh you will be affected.

Another civil right that the younger generation probably is taking for granted is free medical care, i.e. the NHS. Your vote decides whether parts of this institution will be sold off or privatised, ignored and run into the grounds – or whether there will be a solid funding from a 1p Income Tax increase to save this valuable service from its current crisis.

Britain needs an economy that creates jobs and opportunities. Your vote will decide how much money the UK will invest to stimulate growth and how much money will be poured into education, research and innovation.

Conservative school cuts will limit your children's chances depending on class sizes and, more importantly, your income. You can stop the planned cuts as well as the pointless and bizarre re-introduction of grammar schools.

Your vote will also determine whether you and your children can enjoy a future free from pollution with much larger portions of our electricity coming from green sources or whether short term opportunism will lead to more premature deaths from the environmental damage.

Your vote will decide whether you live in a world of equality, with human rights and social justice or whether the UK will scrap the European Convention on Human rights and closes the door to unaccompanied refugee children.

Your vote will decide if we reach a house-building target of 300,000 homes a year by 2022, keep housing benefits for 18 – 21 year-olds, extend free childcare to all two-year-olds and reduce the cost of bus travel for the 16 – 21 year olds.

All of these issues will determine your future, your prosperity and your chances in life. Your vote will decide if you will be stuck in an isolated nationalistic world of the past or in an open, tolerant and progressive future with opportunities for you and future generations.

The Liberal Democrats will ensure a safe global world by suspending arms sales to countries with poor human rights records and making sure at home that no vote is wasted by introducing proportional representation and giving 16-17 year-olds the right to vote.

A vote for the Liberal Democrats can change Britains future – your future.

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