Image of Hammer and Sickle

New Communist Party of Britain

adopted December 2015

Youth in Britain

Young people in Britain today are bearing the brunt of the capitalist crisis, the crisis of overproduction. The current generation face the worst prospects in life than any since 1945. While some will be fortunate, others face a life of uncertainty and debt, with the chances weighted heavily in favour of children from wealthier families.

Since 1979 with the decline in manufacturing, rise of service industries and growing casualization of the workforce, the young face far lower real wages and worse working conditions previous generations and little prospect of accumulating savings or wealth.

The end of near full employment has seen the re‑emergence of a marginalised class with poor access to housing, diet, education and health facilities, for whom unemployment, underemployment, functional illiteracy, high levels of mental illness, a thriving black economy, dependence on benefits and moneylenders, drugs, alcohol, crime and violence are commonplace.

These communities are subjected to intensive and aggressive policing and the attentions of multiple government agencies, and “normal” bourgeois family life is all but impossible.

It is capitalism, increasingly unable to provide adequate work, education and housing for all, which has created these communities, and which maintains a regime of policing, social services and prisons to control them. This can be seen to a greater or lesser degree in almost every advanced capitalist state today but is particularly the case in Britain and the United States.

These factors help to explain the nature of the riots in Britain in August 2011. While policing (including widespread police racism), unemployment, underemployment, sky‑high university tuition fees, cuts to the Education Maintenance Allowance, and anger at widening inequality were triggers for the riots, much of the opportunist looting stemmed from the marginalised class, which British capitalism has created, and which sees little future and nothing positive to hope for.

For young people in general prospects for employment are the worst since 1945, while good quality higher education is becoming a preserve of the wealthy.

While we have watched a decline in young people being involved in structured political parties and other organisations we have seen a welcome increase in the numbers attending peace, anti‑fascist and anti‑cuts demonstrations. We have seen new ways of organising arise through on‑line social media with young people being creative and imaginative in new forms of protest.

Our role is to educate ourselves in respect of these new means of communication and organisations and to introduce Marxist‑Leninist perspectives and spread awareness of the need for structure, for democratic centralism as a safeguard against infiltration, opportunism and being dominated by those with most confidence and the loudest voices. That can lead to a form of fascism.

Since the onset of the 2007‑8 slump exploitation of young people has become endemic with the unfortunate many facing endless “volunteering”, internships (usually unpaid or even paid for by parents), and those on benefits, including disabled people, forced to “work” with no real wage or lose their benefits. In reality these options produce little in the way of real experience.

The New Communist Party calls for:

Increased Government spending on housing, health, education at all levels, infrastructure and industry and high quality training to prepare young people for work and to provide them with real jobs;

Effective systems to alleviate crime and drug dependence in marginalised communities, in place of intensive policing.

Renewed investment in youth centres to provide recreational and sports facilities plus opportunities for young people to develop skills in music, art, drama, photography and so on and teachers to encourage them to excel.