I have had the great opportunity to be able to interview a member of the current government, Mr Edward Timpson. After the General Election in May, Mr Timpson was appointed as the Minister of State for Children and Families. I was intrigued to hear what Mr Timpson wanted to achieve in this role, and also how the current Conservative government will be tackling the issue of poverty over the next five years.
- How important is it that young people take an interest in politics?
“It is hugely important that young people take an interest in politics as otherwise it leads to an unhealthy disconnection between decision-makers (i.e. politicians) and the impact that these decisions have on young people themselves. Taking an interest in politics not only improves your understanding of the world around you, but it also means that policy-makers have to sit up and take notice of your views.”
- Why did you decide to join the Conservative Party?
“It is because their ideas chimed most with the values that I believe in and want to promote: tolerance, respect, a sense of social justice, and aspiration for all.”
- What would you say to young people who have not yet decided which party to support?
“For young people who have not decided which party to support, I would say to them that it doesn’t matter. I would, however, strongly recommend that they find out as much about each party as they can and get a feel for the one that most accords with their views and values. That’s what I did!”
- What do you aim to achieve in your role as Minister of State for Children and Families?
“As Minister of State for Children and Families, I want to ensure that the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children get the highest possible quality of support to enable them to be the best they can. This has been my aim since becoming a Minister, and I am very proud of what we have achieved so far.”
- How do the Conservative Government intend to tackle the issue of poverty over the next five years?
“First, we need to understand what the real causes of poverty are and relentlessly address them. Second, we need to find employment for those who can and want to work, while making sure that work always pays better than not working. Third, we want to make certain that every child can go to a great school, as a good education is the surest way to make certain that a child in poverty does not grow up and become an adult in poverty.”