I was grilled for nearly two hours from the most impressive, articulate, passionate people you could ever hope to meet. They burned with a sense of righteousness of the world they want to see, the world they want to build, not the world as they know it right now." Ruth Davidson, Leader of the Scottish Conservative Party

Leadership inequality in the UK is undeniably striking. The Sutton Trust reported that of the 28 ministers attending David Cameron’s new cabinet, 50% went to Oxbridge (The Sutton Trust, 2015). How can we ensure we have more working class leaders who are proud of their background? Ones who will go on to help other working class young people become great leaders too? RECLAIM believes that working class young people themselves hold the key to unlocking radical social change.

Launched in October 2015, the Disruptive Leaders campaign was one of our boldest campaigns to date. It aimed to:

1) Challenge negative perceptions of working class young people – and to highlight their potential as great leaders

2) Increase awareness of poor working class representation across all political parties

3) Highlight the negative effect that leadership inequality has on wider society

The campaign featured:

  • A city wide billboard campaign, with striking digital and print billboards across 16 locations
  • An infographic video about leadership inequality – researched, written and narrated in collaboration with young people
  • A short podcast where the young people behind the campaign discuss their motivations
  • A young person presenting at the Conservative Party Conference
  • A 2 hour, young people led debate with high profile politicians including Ruth Davidson and Stephen Crabbe, which resulted in a fully funded trip to Scottish Parliament in February 2016
  • Various high profile national media coverage, from the Spectator, to the Huffington Post

This campaign continues to be as relevant as ever, with the Disruptive Leaders video being regularly cited as a teaching tool at universities. RECLAIM young people and staff are regularly asked to speak and facilitate about our ‘Disruptive Leadership’ methods.