Adam Afriyie
MP for Windsor
Conservatives are social reformers

As a long-standing advocate of social mobility I was cheered by the message at this years’ conference.

The Prime Minister laid out the moral mission for Conservatives over the next Parliament in his keynote address.

The message was clear and unequivocal: if you want something done about the challenges facing society, then the Conservatives are the only party for you.

As Conservatives, we are determined to tackle the complex social and economic issues of our time. Whether it’s housing, prisons, family stability, the care system or social mobility, we need to get to work, even if other politicians and political parties are reluctant to express their views through fear of being exposed as out of kilter with the sentiments of modern Britain.

The Conservative party has a proud heritage of social reformers from Disraeli’s “One Nation” conservatism to Macmillan’s housebuilding and Thatcher’s reshaping of the economy. We have a strong tradition of reforming and strengthening society. It should be no different today.

Prison doesn’t rehabilitate well enough. The care system does not, as I have long argued, look after children well enough. The housing market seems unaffordable for aspiring homeowners and hardworking young people often can’t get an early foothold on the career ladder despite their education.

Over the coming months, it will be important to set out how these reforms will work in practice. And the proof will undoubtedly be in the pudding.

But one thing is for sure, Labour has vacated the moderate politics of social justice to engage in catastrophic, destructive politics that have failed time and time again not just in the UK, but around the world from Venezuela to the USSR. They’ve learned nothing. Whether it’s housing, benefits or the care system, their answer is always to throw more money at it than the country earns and to breed state dependency.

The time has come to prove once and for all that only the Conservatives can provide the strong economy and secure country that we need to take on the injustices of society. Whether it is removing the obstacles to opportunity, raising wages, ending discrimination or extremism, the Conservatives will take on the big issues and continue to build a healthy and prosperous society.

It is a big ask but it will be worth it for the millions of hardworking people, young and old, who want to feel they are being dealt a better hand than in the past.