I joined the Labour Party as a 16-year old in April 2010. We were in the final weeks of a general election campaign that we ultimately lost.
I’ve since finished my college education, graduated from university and been in work for over five years.
Together, we’ve lost three more elections in that time.
Four lost elections in what will now be a lost 14 years of Conservative rule.
Despite government debt being higher than in 2010, our public services have been starved. Over 14 million people are in poverty. Our international standing has been diminished.
David Cameron, Theresa May and Boris Johnson all bungled their way to power and blundered when they had it.
They could, and should, have been defeated. Instead, they were aided by subpar leaders of the Labour Party.
It’s heartbreaking to lose an election – knowing the fate of our country and of those vulnerable in our society will rest with those least likely to help.
But, each time, it has been angering to see that has been virtually inevitable. The writing has been on the wall and nothing was done to change it.
We must now recognise that the Labour Party has been losing the country’s trust for years; that it is ready for government and that its leader is the person they want to be prime minister.
That cumulative loss of trust is what has led to the most untrustworthy man in British politics keeping his job as prime minister.
It’s a sorry state of affairs when working class people would rather side with a leader who said working class men are “likely to be drunk, criminal, aimless, feckless and hopeless”, than with the leader of the workers’ party.
When entrepreneurs and wealth creators would rather back a leader who said “f*ck business”.
And when minorities have to choose which candidate for prime minister they think is least racist.
Labour can, and must, be better than that.
To deliver real change for our country, we must first apply that mantra to our own party.
We need a leader who can rebuild the trust that has been lost. A leader who will unite us behind our common values. And a leader who the people can finally look to as a credible alternative prime minister.