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There's only one thing left to do: Vote Labour

The day of reckoning lies ahead. The day we decide to vote on the most important election of our lives. We have the choices and the power to influence the greatest decision of a generation.


Many people are still undecided about which way they will vote. It's quite simple: Vote Labour or pay the piper for what the future holds.


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Change is afoot


After tomorrow, whatever happens, all our lives will change. We will either be moving towards a progressive and collective society where we work together to eradicate homelessness; where children don’t grow up in poverty, and can flourish, thrive and achieve.


Where debt doesn’t stifle us into a depression so entrenched we consider taking our own lives. Where food banks aren’t the equivalent of the monthly shop. Where public transport is fit for purpose and we don’t risk losing our jobs.


Where we have access to immediate support for poor mental health; where we’re supported in our attachment and bonding with our children; where we receive the health and social care that we need, in an emergency, to the standards we have grown to expect.


Where our opportunities to earn don’t come at the expense of people going hungry. Where we have choices and self-respect and aspirations.


Or, we’ll be moving towards an even more divisive, toxic, hostile, insular, oppressive, uncaring, unequal, unjust society. Where those who want for nothing get more and those who need everything get nothing.


We will enter unknown territory and no longer recognise ourselves. Where we believe our aspirations should be restricted to reflect our low self-worth. Where we raise our children to think that this is normal; that humans treat each other in this way and that survival of the fittest is the only way to live.


Where we expose ourselves to dangerous international influences.


Where we become cold, apathetic and unresponsive. Where we are unmoved by children homeless on Christmas Eve, and where people dying in doorways is really no big deal.


Each and every single one of us has the power to decide which one it’s going to be.



Choices


If you’re thinking about voting Tory, please spend this evening asking yourself why. What is it that they have promised that will benefit you and your loved ones? Why do you want Brexit? How will Brexit benefit you more than a Government who eradicates homelessness benefit a woman sleeping on the streets?


How will the sacrifices you make be worse than someone dying alone in a freezing flat from hunger, or worse than your parent or grandparent being denied their dignity in the hospital corridor for fourteen hours because there are no beds?


How does voting Tory benefit your daughter nurse; your son teacher; your friend librarian; your husband firefighter; your wife social worker; your partner student; your nephew who can no longer work due to an injury; your niece who’s become a full time carer for her husband with a terminal illness; or your grandchild being taught in a class of 30+ whilst the teacher stocks up food for the kids whose parents can’t afford to feed them?



Get real


I’m a self-proclaimed socialist, but I don’t believe in the socialist utopia and I don’t think Labour are perfect. Yet there is no contest between the party who doesn’t care if you live or die; who would see you with nothing and no one and would silence you without remorse, or the party who’ll improve your lot and everyone else’s too.


The party who’ll redirect us into a future we want our children to see or the one who’ll obliterate any chance of a decent future for generations to come.



Consequences


You can vote Tory and you can do it conscience free. But please refrain from posting pictures on social media of your poorly Grandma in that hospital corridor, or heart felt statuses about your kids not having access to mental health services in an emergency.


Don't post videos of yourself at work on the ward in crises, or be incredulous at the homeless veteran begging outside Lidl and asking how we can possibly treat the people who've served our country in this way.


Don’t say it’s an outrage that your Grandchild's been robbed of an education because the teachers can’t cope, or complain that you can’t get an appointment with your GP and have to join a queue a mile-long at 7am with a poorly child.


Don't criticise the system and blame immigrants or the disabled, for zero hours contracts being the only work you can get, and as a result you’ve been forced onto Universal Credit.


Don’t protest about losing your job because of the train delays, or moan about not getting the pay rise Labour promised because you’d rather cut off your nose to spite your face than vote for Jeremy Corbyn.


Don't complain about not being able to retire and reap the rewards from the system you paid into, because the pension age keeps rising.



Accountability


You will be held to account. You will be asked who you voted for. There is no time left for being indecisive or saying you’ve been lied to, or when you bear the brunt of more of what you voted for, expect others to empathise with your concerns after the election.


People are exhausted with being reasonable; with being sympathetic to ignorance; with giving people excuses for not understanding politics. The truth is out there. You just have to want to seek it.


You can choose to pay the piper, or you can choose to say you held your nose, put others first, and voted for change.


Vote Labour tomorrow, and reap the rewards of the best decision you ever made.

Kate Anstee is a Freelance Social Justice Trainer and Anti-Poverty Campaigner. Contact here for more information.

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