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December 12 is our chance to take back control of our lives

This election isn’t just about what happened in 2016 – this is about what’s been happening to us under 40 years of neoliberalism, says MICHELLE DORRELL

“TAKE back control.” That’s the mantra that did the rounds in 2016 — waking non-voting elements of this country from their sleepy disdain for politics. 

What also happened is it created a shift in political dynamics, which even the greatest chess players might not have seen coming. It gave the poorest and most downtrodden the opportunity of a lifetime. The chance to punch upwards. 

And we can do that again on December 12 — we just need to vote Labour. In order to give those who’ve had their boots pressed to our necks for so long the bloody nose we’ve all been waiting for. 

This isn’t just about what happened in 2016, this is about what’s been happening to us for over 40 years. 

Gone are the days of long-term job prospects — now what faces the majority is permanent shifting sands. 

For too many people the boss has the means to make lives a living hell if you haven’t reached an arbitrary target — the one you know isn’t actually good for customers or clients, but the one which makes the best returns for those sucking profit dry. 

Zero-hours contracts have left many unsure of how much work they actually have, let alone knowing if they can make ends meet. 

Gone are the days of making a living which actually sustains a family, giving you and your kids the opportunity to not only live an existence but go forwards to do better than the generation before. 

We have become nothing more than a product for consumption and data to be bandied between the different elements of power — the revolving door between big business and their outriders in the halls of Westminster. 

We are told that we have “choice,” that we live in a free society. But how can it be free and with choice if the only option is more of the same — free markets driving everything, corporate welfare taking precedence over public welfare. 

This is why we must do everything possible to take control of our lives again by changing the system at its absolute root and core. 

The Labour leadership of Jeremy Corbyn has kick-started this movement of change — the Labour manifesto is a testament to this. It’s come a long way. 

So it’s vital that we don’t miss this opportunity to start shifting the power back towards where it should ultimately lie — in our hands. 

Take back control on December 12. And vote Labour. 

Michelle Dorrell is co-chair of Folkestone and Hythe Labour Party and a member of Unite the Union.

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