After a series of campaign stalls in the city centre, Leeds Youth Fight for Jobs (YFJ) organised a protest outside Eastgate Jobcentre on the day the latest unemployment figures were announced. These statistics showed that joblessness had soared by 220,000 in the three months to June to 2.435 million. The protest was broadcast on radio and TV.
Manny Dominguez, Danny Melia and Helen Pattison, Leeds YFJ members
With placards, a banner and a megaphone our protest and petitioning went down well with those visiting the Jobcentre. A PCS civil service trade union shop steward came out to show support for our actions.
One person said that the problem is that people want to work but many don’t get the chance.
Speaking to the media, one campaigner explained that youth unemployment is a rapidly growing problem. People see massive profits being taken and bankers getting bailed out, whilst at the same time feeling powerless with no voice when it comes to big business and politicians.
The protest organiser explained that there is enough money in society to create decent, well-paid jobs, providing full employment, quality training and free education; it’s just that the government has other priorities – its big business friends – and that we need a new mass party of the working class to represent our interests.