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A Labour initiative to engage with Britain’s students and improve life for university employees is to be spearheaded by David Miliband.
The former Foreign Secretary has laid down plans with Ed Miliband, the leader of the Labour Party, to visit over 20 university campuses in the next year.
David Miliband will take part in a series of discussions and Q & A sessions on behalf of the party. This will mean taking Labour’s message to students and working with Labour Students to campaign for a Living Wage at universities and colleges, while also listening to young people about what they want from Labour.
These events will be organised by the party, taking place in politics and international relations departments across Britain over the next year.
They will be open to all students, irrespective of party allegiance, and will cover the big international and domestic challenges facing the country - from the economic rise of China to engagement with the Muslim world. They will also discuss domestic challenges from the cost of living crisis for the squeezed middle, the threat to the next generation and the future of higher education, as well as the erosion of values like responsibility which bind our communities together.
The role will see him promote Labour Students’ national campaign for a Living Wage for employees at higher and further education institutions across the country. The campaign will also have the active support of The Movement for Change, created by David Miliband to train future leaders and now the home of community organising within the Labour movement.
Labour Students will also be asked to report back to Labour’s Policy Review so that the opinions of Britain’s students can be heard as the party builds a new agenda for the next election that addresses the biggest challenges facing Britain.
David Miliband said:
“Young people face a government that is dismantling opportunity and undermining ambition. I am looking forward to helping Ed build the foundations for success at the next general election by listening to students and encouraging them to see Labour as the voice for Britain's future in these tough times. By getting involved in Labour Students’ Living Wage campaign I know we can make a real difference on the campuses of Britain, and prove that only the Labour Party represents the ideals of aspirational young people who want to see a better quality of life for themselves and their community. I am very excited that Movement for Change will be expanding to support the campaign.”
Ed Miliband said:
“I am delighted David is taking on this role. He is a big asset to the Labour Party and I am confident he can bring our message to campuses up and down Britain. This builds on work which he was already doing with universities and I know that in this role David will help our party as we look outwards to engage people - particularly the next generation - so that we can face the future with hope.”
Olivia Bailey, National Chair of Labour Students, said:
“At such a crucial time for students it is vital that the Labour Party listens to us. I'm delighted to be working with David and Ed to help support and encourage the next generation of our party. I'm also delighted to have support for our important Living Wage campaign which we hope will secure an end to poverty pay for all workers in HE and FE institutions across the country.”
Blair McDougall, National Director of Movement for Change, said:
“Labour Students’ Living Wage campaign is an exciting first national campaign for Movement for Change. It is part of returning Labour to its roots as a movement in society which is able to build coalitions and campaign for change.”