Election shows influence and importance of young voters, says Jewish student leader

“Our political parties will no longer be able to ignore the needs and concerns of young people.”


The Union of Jewish Students has insisted political parties can no longer ignore young people after large numbers voted in the general election.

The Conservatives failed to make the widely predicted gains to form a majority government, which left the UK with a hung Parliament. The high turnout among young voters is credited with boosting Labour's vote share.

Josh Nagli, UJS campaigns director, said: "Over the last six weeks, it has been inspiring to see young people on all sides of the debate engaging in this general election, and the impressively high youth turn out is a sign of young people determined to ensure that their voice is heard in Westminster and across the country.

“Our political parties will no longer be able to ignore the needs and concerns of young people.”

He added: “As the composition of the government remains unclear at this time, it is difficult to say what this result means for Jewish students.

“They should be reassured, however, by the re-election of a number MPs who have regularly stood up for Jewish students in Parliament and in wider society which we expect to continue.”

Mr Nagli said UJS hoped the government would “continue to safeguard a thriving Jewish student life on all UK campuses, including but not limited to taking a strong stand against antisemitism."

Chief Rabbi Epharim Mirvis said last night’s results showed the deep divisions that existed in British society.

Rabbi Mirvis said: “The general election results make it quite clear that it is not only our political representatives who are sharply divided on what is in the best long term interests of our country, but also that the electorate is similarly divided.

“The coming years will, without doubt, be a defining period for the future of Great Britain and as a society we will need to face this period of uncertainty with compassion and fortitude. 

He added: “As Theresa May seeks to form a new government, my prayer is that she be blessed with the insight and the wisdom to lead the country with a spirit of understanding and a commitment to the common good.”

Jonathan Goldstein, chair of Jewish Leadership Council, said he was pleased to see so many MPs who were friends of the Jewish community re-elected.

“The Jewish Leadership Council looks forward to working with them, and all MPs, in the service of our community,” he said.

Board of Deputies president Jonathan Arkush said he would comment on the implications of the election when the outcome of the government was clearer.

He said: “In the meantime, however, we would like to congratulate the many friends of our community who have been re-elected and elected for the first time.”

He also paid tribute to the “good friends of our community who have lost their seats.

“We wish them well and look forward to remaining in touch with them and working with their successors in the interests of our community.”

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