MP Alan Campbell column: 'It's not kids who lack ambition, it's the government'

Tynemouth MP Alan Campbell.Tynemouth MP Alan Campbell.
Tynemouth MP Alan Campbell.
Congratulations to all students in their exam results, and to the parents and teachers who helped to get them through.

It’s been a tough few years after the Covid pandemic disrupted their lives and studies. Whether they move into work or progress in education, I wish them well.

But we owe them more than just best wishes.

The reality is that too many jobs are low paid and insecure. Too many graduates leave without secure employment suited to their qualifications and have high student debt.

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The problem is not a lack of ambition from young people, but from the government.

It’s often said that the aim was to give young people a better future than their parents’ generation. That covenant seems broken.

It doesn’t have to be like this, after all, some of our businesses and universities are amongst the best in the world.

But if we are to get high-paid jobs in local communities so young people don’t have to move away, we need a new economic approach.

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We need to harness new technology, invest more in research and development and encourage more start ups – as other successful economies do.

We need a modern industrial strategy which harnesses business, trade unions and local communities.

And we need an active government prepared to roll its sleeves up rather than one which too often is missing in action.

That’s how we will get growth which will reduce the country’s debts, restore our public services and deliver prosperity which all people in every community can share and have a stake in.