Hinckley and Bosworth Lib Dems back campaign calling for investment in youth services
Hinckley and Bosworth Liberal Democrats are backing a national campaign calling for investment in out-of-school youth services.
UK Youth-an organisation which works with young people and youth organisations-has launched its own manifesto.
The number one ask in that manifesto is a call for youth services to be made a priority public service.
UK Youth states: 'For many young people, their youth service is their only safe space. Every young person in every region, city, town and village of the United kingdom should have access to a minimum standard of youth services, enabling access to mental health services, citizenship education, social mixing and training.'
Youth services across the country, including here in Leicestershire, have faced significant cuts over recent years.
According to the Leicester-based National Youth Agency, 'Youth services in the UK have been subject to a large range of financial cuts and restrictions.
This impact has meant that many youth services across the country have been closed, reduced, or are facing closure.'
County Councillor Michael Mullaney, Lib Dems Parliamentary Spokesperson for Bosworth, says "Investment in youth services is vital for local young people.
"Leicestershire young people already get an unfair deal with our local schools being among the worst funded in the country.
"I hope Leicestershire's Tory MPs will start to fight to get our young people the fair funding they need for local schools and youth services."
Vice Chair of Bosworth Lib Dems, Mathew Hulbert, who as a Councillor was Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council's Children and Young People's Champion from 2011 to 2015, says "These services, including youth clubs, street-based youth work, outdoors education and so on, play a vital role in supporting young people, giving them confidence and helping them to be good citizens as they grow into adulthood.
"Often, vulnerable young people will confide in professional Council-funded youth workers when they feel they have nowhere else to turn.
"It is outrageous that these services continue to be axed.
"I fully support the call by UK Youth for youth services to get statutory funding, guaranteeing they are provided.
"Thanks to a motion I successfully took through Lib Dem national conference in 2015, our policy supports the need for statutory funding.
"I hope policy-makers and campaigners from all parties and none will get behind this vitally-important cause."