Kebab-based gimmicks won't win this battle – Voice of the Sunday Mirror

Through the pandemic the government ave really has let a generation down and young people are going to want support, jobs and proper training – not a kebab

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Boris Johnson is asked if he will ditch the triple lock for pensions

The government has announced its latest wheeze to get young people to take the jab. Of course, anything that helps fight this disease is to be welcomed. And offering incentives is certainly a useful tool.

But is this really the right way to go about it?

A government that last time we looked was cracking down on junk food adverts and trying to encourage people to use public transport is offering pizza and taxis to youngsters.

It’s not the best of looks. But it kind of fits into the way this government treats young people.

Through the pandemic, it really has let a generation down. Schools have opened and closed almost at random. Advice around exams changes by the hour.

Youngsters at university have had their experience ruined with very little support.

Is this really going to get you to get a Covid vaccination?

And firms have laid off young people all over the place.

When we emerge from this pandemic, young people are going to want support. Jobs. Proper training. Sending them out into the world with a book of coupons is not going to cut it.

It’s not just young people who can see through these gimmicks.

NHS workers – who put their lives on the line for us – got claps, praise and a share in a medal.

But when it came to what they really needed – what they really deserved – the government vanished.

Same for the police and the other emergency services. And the delivery drivers, the transport workers, the supermarket staff and everyone else who kept this country moving.

This latest gimmick is exactly that. A gimmick.

What our young people need – what the country needs – is a government that will end the sideshow and concentrate on the main event.

That means a concrete, well-funded, serious plan for how we get the country moving again and how we make it up to those who have suffered so much.

Act fast & fairly

Some horrific things about migrants crossing the Channel were said this week – not worthy of repeating here.

Suffice it to say, it was the usual stuff, inhuman and cruel.

Today, in a dispatch from a camp outside Calais, we bring you the story of Samrand, a 28-year-old man who worked in a post office in Sardasht, Iran.

He lost his job for being a Christian, and faces death if he returns to his country.

The French want to deport him, so he is desperate to get to England where he feels he will get a fair hearing – but there is no official way for him to do so.

However tempting it is to fall into the traps the right-wing sets, it’s important to remember that the people trying to get here have lost everything.

And if we want to stop these crossings – which are deadly and expensive – we have to make it easier for people to get here through official channels, and give them a swift and fair hearing when they do.


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