Hi Jeremy and Akala,
Novelist has helped loads in my career to date so I am taking in #Grime4Corbyn!! Akala that Facebook Post was amazing, mad deep, thank you for that still (check it out by clicking here). But there is one problem, I am only 15 so I can’t vote? Jeremy will you still address my generations issues and concerns or do we have to wait till the next election?
The early part of the 2000s, around the time I was born, there was a media frenzy about gun crime in the UK. This reached a boiling point in 2005/6 when there were 59 firearm related homicides (BBC-UK gun crime figures). David Cameron at the time made an attempt to blame it on rap but the UK scene had nowhere near as much commercial reach as it does now and drill didn’t even exist (Cameron 2006)!! In relation to knife crime in 2008, more 70 yes SEVEN ZERO teenagers were killed by knives (BBC Dec 2008). Why am I saying all of this now? Because we know that tougher sentencing and increased stop an search is merely a plaster that surpasses stats in the short term but doesn’t address the underlying issues. As this issue affects me and my generation I really need you to address a few of the questions I have laid out below:
(1) Youth Services / Education / Youth Unemployment
The best way to teach my generation is not by preaching at us but it is by showing us!! 2011 during the riots when many youth services were closed like community centres and youth unemployment was rather high at 22% (source), meaning one in 5 young people couldn’t get a job so for young people from the hood (working class backgrounds) the roads (street hustling) made more sense. Even young people with university degrees, were going onto to receive criminal records as oppose to masters. Plus the record arrests that took place as a result of the riots led to even more young people being criminalized. Five years later we are starting to learn the social impact. How will you address these issues?
(2) Injustice and Mental Health
Last year my Uncle Kwabz did an article expressing his disappointment that the Brexit debate didn’t address why 40% of the under 18 prison population was made up of Black and Ethnic minorities? They also had an interesting piece on the 50% rise in long term youth unemployment amongst ethnic minorities since 2010. Hopefully you address both of these points?
To further compound matters, African Caribbean people detained in psychiatric settings. People from these communities currently make up over a third of patients in medium secure psychiatric hospitals despite being less than three percent of the national population (BMH UK)
But mental health is not only an issue in terms of race but seems to disproportionately impact those from the working class. Adults in the poorest fifth are much more likely to be at risk of developing a mental illness as those on average incomes: around 24% compared with 14%. Given the state of the NHS, how will this be addressed?
Weed but in America corporations and farmers are enjoying the spoils off a billion dollar industry and man in the ends are being arrested over a couple 10 bags? On a more serious note wouldn’t it better if people were smoking natural and spiritually righteous weed as opposed skunk or weed that has been laced with God knows what? As oppose to demonizing it don’t we need educate and discuss ways of ensuring young people clearly understand the difference and what impact it may have on their lives and wider society?
(4) Social housing and child poverty
Part of the reason why I think the media are now aggressively pushing point number 1 more than in previous years is because of gentrification at the expense of social housing. The reduction of social housing, increase in homelessness, decrease in home ownership from working class backgrounds? (check Shelter)
Since the year of the riots, the number of children living in poverty has jumped by 200,000 in 2013/14 according to Guardian. Children are missing out on hot meals and we are asking why the roads has become more appealing?
(5) More Parenting Classes
Last year it was reported that teen pregnancy had dropped significantly in the UK but childcare costs being so high and benefits forever being demonized, I think young people should receive education on the challenges of becoming a parent and coping mechanisms.
(6) Brexit and UK music
MM could do more to engage with the community such as more events like we did last year “Digital, Tech and Music” as well as sponsoring “Art Of Grime” last month. The UK music scene has enjoyed some good times as of late and the EU is our biggest consumer!! So as Uncle Kwabz said in his article; “From Brexit To Hardstop, keep doing your thing“, how will you ensure Brexit doesn’t have an adverse affect on UK music sales, tours etc?
Let me know when your free to link up and address these issues on camera so my generation know what your really saying!!
I am not a politician or a writer so sorry if the English isn’t grammatically on point!!