Author Archives: Charlie Kingsbury

The party needs to live its values in the way it treats young members

Imagine being a member of a political party which prides itself on policy crafted by individuals which are valued in their own right, not for their morally arbitrary characteristics. It shouldn’t be too hard to imagine, because it is what our party sells itself as. Now imagine that upon joining that party you are told that actually what you are is just a good pair of legs to deliver leaflets, that you should instead accept that some people know better than you as a consequence of again arbitrary characteristics, and that regardless of your actual experiences that people are right to make assumptions about your knowledge, intelligence, and capacity for thinking into the future.

I would imagine that sounds fairly grim to you, and of course I would naturally agree. The sad thing is that this is a reality for young members of our party which they experience almost daily. It is no more obvious than at party conferences, where regardless of one’s education, training and vocation, that one is deemed “naïve” as a consequence of one’s youth.

I’d like to say I was heartened by the gasps and boos following one such example during the fracking debate, and I dare say the speaker responsible will have learnt her lesson. However, the problem persists within the party, and was evidenced the next day on the controversial debate concerning AWS and ADS. Young speakers from both sides of the debate recalled times where either themselves or their friends had experienced unwanted advances and sexual harassment, only to be told later either that they were plainly wrong, or that they knew nothing about true sexism.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 49 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • Lorenzo Cherin
    the best i have heard from a Lib Dem mp since Layla for leader went firmly in the other direction!...
  • John McHugo
    Until recently, I had thought it would take six months or so to know whether the problems at the European border are "teething problems" or a symptom of gross n...
  • Lorenzo Cherin
    The excellent comments from Davids Raw and Evans, with Michael's analysis here too, make strong thoughts needed. This party better connect with reality. I...
  • Michael 1
    The Observer is reporting that more than 2/3rds of "senior council officials" are backing elections back to the autumn https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2...
  • Michael 1
    Continued (sorry!) I would also make a point of providing sanitizer to deliverers and making sure they use it very, very regularly. It might be a good way...