I became more and more politicized following the 2008 economic crash and the subsequent political movements that sprang up in response to the austerity agenda being enforced in its wake. I was appalled at the hate and prejudice that was rising up among many sections of society and the way those who were least responsible for the economic crash were being blamed, victimised and made to pay the price.
I wanted to be a voice for change and explore ways of creating platforms for other voices to be heard, the voices of the people I had given my life for, for over ten years, the voices that are never heard…. so I joined the Labour party (Not an obvious choice at the time)
It was a strange time to be entering party politics to be honest; it felt like everyone around me was disengaging; losing hope, losing trust, becoming disillusioned and feeling like all politicians and all parties are the same. I could understand, far too many politicians didn’t look or sound like me or any of the people around me, far too many seemed to men in grey suits trying to hold power, keepers of the status quo.
I knew though, that if you want to see change, you cant just chant from the sidelines, you need to get involved. “BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WOLRD.” If I wanted to see politics truly represent everyday people, to mean something and count for something again, then I needed to get involved. Thankfully things are changing and the old ways of doing politics are being shaken up, I’m excited by the direction of travel the Labour Party is taking under Jeremy Corbyn but there is still a lot to do.
Some of the things I have been getting up to
- Developing political initiatives like an activist network for people who want to fight different issues like austerity, environment, refugees rights
- Setting up a pub politics night where people from Teesside come together to discuss the issues that matter to them
- Developed a young people’s voter registration project and have put on and supported various other political events and discussions.
- Attending or supporting various activist and campaign groups in response to governments cuts, racism and poverty
- Starting a people’s tabloid, that give a voice to hidden voices into the issues that most affect them.
Policy & Research
- Contributing to all parliamentary groups such as The Prostituion and Global Sex Trade APP
- Working as a policy and campaigns officer for Northern TUC, developing policies and campaigns around young workers, school cuts, public sector pay and anti-racism
- Working as a researcher for a county Durham MP covering issues such as welfare reform, the charity sector, local government cuts, place regeneration and housing
- On the regional and national Unite Labour Party Liason board
- Former political officer and now recently elected womens officer for the Labour Party in Durham City.
If you want to read some of my thoughts and activities around politics, please check out https://jessiejacobs.co.uk/category/politics/