Friends of Young Liberals: Launch

For many of us, the Lib Dems aren’t just a political party, but a political family too. We don’t just campaign together, but we socialise together, chat together, make friends, and in some cases, meet future partners, husbands, wives. Moreover, for many Lib Dems that I have spoken to, the Young Liberals (under any of its many former names) have played an integral part in that, providing a way for liberal-minded young people to get stuck in and meet others like them.

Moreover, the Young Liberals of today carry on as the legendary “golden generation” of the past did: we work up and down the country, flooding into campaigns in by-elections, distributing Focus leaflets to students, holding social events and conferences throughout the UK, and contributing to the party at all levels.

We try to shout about our work as much as possible, but I often hear people say that they wish they could keep in touch with Young Liberals and hear about our successes as well as our views and opinions more often.

That’s why, with the help of the current Young Liberals Executive, I am today launching a scheme called Friends of Young Liberals, which aims to help people do exactly that.

The Friends scheme will allow anybody to sign up to a monthly newsletter containing highlights from Young Liberals, as well as guest editorials about party strategy and policy, and reflections on polling and campaigning from a youth perspective. However, it’s not just another mailing list: later on, in the year, plans are underway to hold a Friends of Young Liberals dinner, and in future, we’re hoping to organise social events up and down the country, as well as conference gatherings.

Young Liberals have a lot to offer the party, but similarly, the Young Liberals of the past have experience and insight which would be beneficial to us. We can This scheme is to help facilitate greater connections between YL and the main party, and make sure that both are learning from each other, and that as a party, we’re harnessing our potential.

So, if you’re interested in signing up (and we hope you are!), head over to the Young Liberals website to sign up, by clicking this link [url: http://www.youngliberals.uk/friends] and filling in a few details. We want to get as many people involved as possible, of any age.

We look forward to seeing you all at Conference – if you want to see what we’re about, come and visit our stall in the exhibition space, and mainly, come to the Young Liberals motion on ending unpaid internships at 11:30 am on Sunday!

 

* Harry is Communications Officer for the Young Liberals. He lives in South London, where he is training to be a barrister.

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9 Comments

  • David Warren 6th Mar '19 - 2:01pm

    This is a really good idea. You guys are the future of Liberalism.

    As someone who is definitely an older member I have signed up and look forward to hearing about YL activities.

  • John Marriott 6th Mar '19 - 3:42pm

    I seem to remember that, back in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Young Liberals under Peter Hain (remember him?) were in the vanguard of protests against Apatheid, disrupting the Springboks’ 1969 rugby tour of the British Isles amongst other things. Back then very few of us ever thought that, within a generation or so, not only would Nelson Mandela walk free but that doctines such as Apatheid and Communism, for that matter, would be consigned to the dustbin of history.

  • Tony Greaves 6th Mar '19 - 11:08pm

    And a lot of us stayed around, David! The point is though that throughout the 1960s and well into the 1970s the Young Liberal Movement (NLYL and ULS) were part of the radical and progressive wing of the party (often the leaders of it) inspired originally by Jo Grimond’s call for the Liberals to be a progressive non-socialist party of the left. I wish the current Young Liberals well in their work for by-elections and the like but are they providing the new generation of radical and progressive leadership we now need? And I won’t be coming to any posh dinners, sorry – in my day (I was NLYL Chair immediately before Peter Hain) that was not what we did.

  • Tony Greaves 6th Mar '19 - 11:12pm

    I also wondered where the YL presence was on the day of the school strike and climate change demo in Parliament Square. The SWP were out in force, handing out literature, talking to people and no doubt recruiting. Or have we not got an Young Liberals in London any more? I cannot think we would have missed such an event in 1966, or 1968, or 1970…

  • John Marriott 7th Mar '19 - 7:07am

    @Tony Greaves
    And you could have added “Why did there appear to be so few males there on the Climate Change Demo as well?” Perhaps they decided to stay in school to try to catch up with the girls! Sisters really are “doing it for themselves” at the moment.

  • Tony Greaves 7th Mar '19 - 11:02pm

    I would say that in Parliament Square it was 50-50.

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