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Archive for June 2014

2 June 2014

spotRhydyfelin library occupied by protesters

., photo .

Community campaigners occupied Rhydyfelin library on 31 May in protest at its closure. Four of them chained themselves to the bookshelves

4 June 2014

spotStevenage: March against the far-right, racist EDL

The far-right, racist English Defence League (EDL) is planning to hold a march in Stevenage on 7 June. They want to spread their hatred and racist propaganda

4 June 2014

spotPCS-Unite merger: Will it strengthen our fightback?

One of the main debates at PCS annual conference in May was on a possible merger with Unite the Union, writes John McInally, PCS national vice-president (personal capacity).

4 June 2014

spotWorkplace news in brief

Mark Harding: In an important victory for all trade unionists, RMT branch secretary Mark Harding has been found not guilty of charges relating to February's tube strike

4 June 2014

spotWhy I joined the Socialist Party

I am Liam Langan, father of three, carer to my three adult brothers, martial arts instructor, taxi driver and the list goes on

4 June 2014

spot'Join the socialists' week of action

There will be a 'Join the Socialists' week of action from 14 to 21 June when Socialist Party branches will be holding public meetings, extra campaigning stalls and other activities

4 June 2014

spotSuccessful building in east London

Almost half the people attending the East London Socialist Party's post-election meeting were not yet Socialist Party members, including four people at their first SP meeting

4 June 2014

spotRapid recruitment in Plymouth

Plymouth Socialist Party branch is set to hit its recruitment target in a matter of weeks. This is largely due to people seeing how effective our organisation can be at defending working class people from

4 June 2014

spotThem & Us

Debt collectors: Low income families, whose tax credits were incorrectly calculated by the HMRC, are being hounded for overpayments by HMRC-contracted debt collection agencies

4 June 2014

spotEnough of 'all the same' capitalist politics!

Musician Paul Weller, when asked on breakfast TV last week if he's still political, replied: "Like the majority of people I'm disillusioned with it all..."

4 June 2014

spotInclusive capitalism? You're having a laugh!

If you're going to have a press conference, have a dear one. Get the mayor of the City of London and Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild to organise it...

4 June 2014

spotChildren handed poverty "life sentence"

Five million children condemned to poverty by 2020. This is the stark reality for low-income families in Britain

4 June 2014

spotNHS: We demand a living wage!

On 5 June, Unison - the biggest trade union in health - is organising a day of protest over pay. And there is plenty for us to protest about

4 June 2014

spotUnite conference: Fighting policies needed

Unite's new Executive Council (EC) meets from 9 June for the first time following the results of this year's elections declared in April

4 June 2014

spotLeeds unions prepare for action

The trade unions within Leeds City Council's collective agreement - Unison, GMB, Unite and Ucatt, through the JTUC have formally notified the employer of our opposition to the cuts it is proposing

4 June 2014

spotNHS: Night shift and a cold rage

I'm a psychiatric nurse in a crisis/home treatment capacity in a South Yorkshire mental health trust

4 June 2014

spotPlan now for the fundraising collectathon

Fresh from pounding the streets in the historic TUSC election campaign, Socialist Party members are now turning their attention to developing working class struggles in the workplaces and communities against this rotten government

4 June 2014

spotTUSC: Next steps building political voice for workers

On 22 May the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition presented the biggest left-of-Labour electoral stand in generations

4 June 2014

spotUS: How Seattle won a $15 minimum wage

15 Now has won a $15 an hour minimum wage in Seattle

Seattle is the first major US city to pass a $15 an hour minimum wage. 100,000 workers will be lifted out of poverty, and millions will be inspired all over the country and around the world

4 June 2014

spotIreland: Electoral surge against austerity

Ruth Coppinger and Joe Higgins outside the Irish Parliament

Ireland was no exception to the rejection of pro-austerity governments in the European elections. Three sets of elections took place on 23 May: local, European and two parliamentary byelections

4 June 2014

spot"Enough is enough!" - 1.5m could strike over pay

On 10 July, 1.5 million public sector workers could be on strike against a derisory pay offer. The Unite, Unison, GMB, NUT and PCS unions could all be walking out together

4 June 2014

spotBakers' Union interview: "We can stop race to bottom"

BFAWU president Ian Hodson spoke about the Fast Food Rights campaign to Claire Laker-Mansfield from Youth Fight for Jobs

4 June 2014

spotUCU: Members losing patience with leadership

The 2014 congress of the University and College Union (UCU) brought to the fore members' dissatisfaction with an eighth consecutive year of a right-wing leadership undermining lecturers' and academic staff's need to fight and circumventing union democracy

4 June 2014

spotCome to NSSN conference!

The NSSN in action protesting against blacklisting at a Crossrail site in London, photo Paul Mattsson

Build for co-ordinated strike action against austerity on 10 July and beyond

4 June 2014

spotVictory for $15 campaign in Seattle

Workers Can Win

"We did this. Workers did this. Today's first victory for $15 will inspire people all over the nation," said socialist Seattle city councillor Kshama Sawant. She was speaking after the 2 June meeting of the city council which voted to adopt a minimum wage of more than double the federal US rate

5 June 2014

spotVadim Kuramshin on hunger strike

The human rights lawyer Vadim Kuramshin in Kazakhstan has announced an indefinite hunger strike in protest at the cruel treatment he is suffering in prison.

5 June 2014

spot11-day strike at Tilbury docks

Moves by the hardline management of SCA Logistics, based at Tilbury docks, to drive down wages by introducing zero hours contracts has sparked an 11-day strike which started this morning, Thursday 5 June

6 June 2014

spotStop Leeds college nursery closures

Around 25 people turned up to a public meeting in Armley to discuss Leeds City College's imminent threat to close nurseries at its St Bartholomews, Brundenell and Thomas Danby sites which will see the loss of 30 jobs and a valuable service for parents who wish to take up Further Education courses

6 June 2014

spotFirefighters announce one-day strike

Firefighters in England and Wales will strike again over attacks on their pensions after the government confirmed it would implement a new scheme without further negotiations

6 June 2014

spotCuts consensus: Labour joins with Ukip to back Tory council

Any illusions in the anti-establishment credentials of Portsmouth's new Ukip councillors were swiftly dashed when they joined forces with New Labour and the Tories

10 June 2014

spotBrazil: Solidarity with sacked Metro workers

A Metro strike in Sao Paolo state in Brazil is underway; 60 striking workers have been sacked and are appealing for international solidarity

10 June 2014

spotAfter the Floods: Over 800 attend Spelthorne public meeting

Spelthorne residents, many of whom had been victims of the flooding, expressed anger towards the panel of 'experts'

11 June 2014

spot'Trojan Horse': who is attacking education?

Birmingham schools: For the last two months, news headlines have been dominated by the so-called 'Trojan Horse' story

11 June 2014

spotNewark byelection: capitalist parties in crisis

The Tories claimed the Newark byelection as a complete victory and much of the media has suggested it marks the start of the bursting of the Ukip bubble. Neither claim is reality

11 June 2014

spotKen Loach's Jimmy's Hall

Film review: Dramatic, inspiring and full of life, 'Jimmy's Hall', based on the true story of left-wing worker-activist Jimmy Gralton, is in many ways director Ken Loach's sequel to his outstanding 'The Wind That Shakes the Barley', writes Niall Mulholland.

11 June 2014

spotObituary: George Duff

George joined the Socialist Party around the time I became branch secretary of East London branch in January 2013. He was an upbeat and treasured member of the branch

11 June 2014

spotWhy I'm a socialist

When I joined the civil service some years ago, staff from a higher education background such as I were respected professionals with career prospects, writes Andrew Wilkins.

11 June 2014

spotBakers' union calls for general strike

"My message to Frances O' Grady and the TUC is this: We've done the marches, attended the rallies and got nowhere... Stop beating about the bush and call for a general strike"

11 June 2014

spotGreece: CWI councillors elected

Syriza, the left party in Greece, is now the first party - 3.9 % ahead of right-wing capitalist party New Democracy in the European elections

11 June 2014

spotSpain: European elections redefine political map

Victor Egio (CWI member, local councillor in Santomera, Murcia, and member of Izquierda Unida, writing in a personal capacity) responds to the results of the European elections in Spain

11 June 2014

spotNow is the time to join the Socialists!

From 14 to 21 June the Socialist Party is hosting a ‘recruitment week’ to put special emphasis on building our party

11 June 2014

spotFirefighters to walk out for 24-hours

The FBU union plans a 24-hour strike across England and Wales to protect firefighters' pensions, following 12 shorter strikes since September 2013

11 June 2014

spotCare UK workers continue dispute

The inspiring Doncaster Care UK workers, having taken 34 days of strike action against pay cuts and NHS privatisation, voted at the end of their last strike on 18 May to take another 14 days of action in June, writes Alistair Tice.

11 June 2014

spotWorkplace news in brief

Sun don't shine: The Sun newspaper continues to attract deserved opprobrium from those affected by the 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster when 96 Liverpool FC fans died

11 June 2014

spotThem & Us

PFI profit machine: Private Finance Initiative (PFI) schemes in the NHS, schools, councils, etc, are notorious for being a gigantic rip-off of the public purse

11 June 2014

spotThe battle of Orgreave

30th anniversary of the historic miners' strike: On Saturday 14 June 2014 there will be a celebration of struggle and resistance marking the 30th anniversary of the great miners' strike

11 June 2014

spotEDL not welcome here

A counter-march organised by the trades council sent a clear message that the EDL's divisive methods will not go unopposed

11 June 2014

spotWorld Cup carnival can't hide corruption and injustice

It is impossible not to notice that the World Cup has begun. While it may send some people scurrying for the TV remote, billions of football fans across the globe have been looking forward to one of the

11 June 2014

spotTiananmen Square 1989

Counter-revolution crushes democracy movement: On 3 to 4 June 1989, Deng Xiaoping and other aged leaders of China's so-called 'communist' party, ordered 200,000 troops to crush a two-month long movement of workers and students against bureaucratic rule and for workers' democracy

11 June 2014

spotHousing workers strike against rep suspension

Between 6 and 9 June, commuters on Camden's Chalk Farm Road were treated to the familiar sight of union members with Unite flags and placards outside One Housing Group (OHG) headquarters, writes A Unite housing workers' branch officer.

11 June 2014

spotUnison: No waiting for Labour - fight the job cuts

Unison conference: While low pay and the pay freeze are a major issue for public sector workers, job cuts are increasingly a threat, writes Glenn Kelly

11 June 2014

spotNHS: Private profit kills

Demonstration against NHS cuts at Whipps Cross hospital, East London 21 September 2013, photo Paul Mattsson

Baby feed death: People have rightly been horrified and outraged at the recent tragic death of a premature baby in St Thomas's hospital in London

11 June 2014

spot10 July: United action can beat austerity

Part the 2011 N30 London demo, photo Senan

Trade union members want action on the most basic demand of all: pay

12 June 2014

spotEscalation of FBU dispute begins

Striking FBU members, Leicester, 12.6.14, photo S Score

FBU members are striking for 24 hours today against attacks on their pension scheme

12 June 2014

spotVictory! Library to re-open on Monday

In a stunning victory campaigners have forced Rhondda Cynon Taff council to re-open Rhydyfelin library

13 June 2014

spotMiliband forced to retreat from sinking to depth of boosting the Sun

Labour Party leader Ed Miliband has had to apologise for posing with a copy of the Sun newspaper

16 June 2014

spotSafety Glass workers strike for a real pay rise

Tyneside Safety Glass workers strike over pay amd conditions, June 2014

Workers strike for an above inflation above rise and an agreement on agency workers

17 June 2014

spotAbout Socialism 2014

17 June 2014

spotIraq: Oil war's bloody legacy

Part of the massive demo against war in Iraq, 15 February 2003, photo Molly Cooper

At the time of Bush and Blair's catastrophic and criminal invasion of Iraq in 2003, the Socialist Party warned it could lead to the break-up of Iraq and terrible sectarian war that is now being played out in front of the eyes of the world

18 June 2014

spotThem & Us

Austerity kills: Research in the British Journal of Psychiatry has shown that during the first two years of recession following the world capitalist financial meltdown in 2007, an additional 10,000 suicides were recorded across Europe and North America

18 June 2014

spotNottinghamshire fire cuts - "pushed to breaking point"

Nottinghamshire fire service proposes cuts of £2.4 million. Warsop and Collingham - small, isolated towns - would lose their retained firefighters, providing crucial cover for nearby villages

18 June 2014

spotBirmingham: new Socialist Party branch

The new Birmingham South East branch is up and running. Based in Acocks Green, a working-class suburb of Birmingham , the new branch regularly held local Saturday stalls and established a foothold among

18 June 2014

spotSocialist Party Summer Camp 2014

August Bank Holiday weekend: The venue is on the A602, just off A10. Nearest station is Ware

18 June 2014

spotBook review: The man who loved dogs

Cuban writer Leonardo Padura's masterful novel, The Man Who Loved Dogs, is about the exile years of Leon Trotsky and his assassin, Roman Mercader, writes Niall Mulholland.

18 June 2014

spotLetters to the Socialist

Tory Lady's advice bureau: Last year, former Tory whip Lady Rawlings made the press by advising people on low budgets to use electric blankets and hot water bottles to keep warm instead of heating their whole house, writes Keith Whitehead.

18 June 2014

spotTrades council conference: workers won't wait for TUC

Trades councils held their conference in Cardiff on 14/15 June. This year, there was a pleasant sting in its tail!

18 June 2014

spotWorkplace news in brief

EDF energy strike: A third day of strike action by Unite members working at EDF in London, the South East, South West and Eastern region took place on 16 June

18 June 2014

spotCome to the NSSN conference on 5 July

Why I'm going to the conference: The 2014 National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) conference will take place just days before over one million workers could be taking action against cuts in our pay

18 June 2014

spotReport shows huge support for taxing rich

Where's our recovery?: Francis Bacon, the 17th century philosopher, said that money was like muck - no good unless it is spread evenly

18 June 2014

spotSurvey shows potential for new mass workers' party

The Tories' much vaunted economic recovery failed to impress the voters in the recent elections. Now, a Guardian opinion poll has found that only 18% of the public believe they are benefiting

18 June 2014

spotUnison local government members want action on pay

Local government conference for Unison opened up in a very difficult period for local government workers

18 June 2014

spotBakers call for £10 minimum wage

The June Bakers' Food and Allied Workers' Union (BFAWU) conference called for a living wage of £10 an hour for all workers

18 June 2014

spotLambeth College indefinite strike

Lambeth College teachers in the lecturers' union UCU have entered their third week of indefinite strike action which started on 3 June

18 June 2014

spotRhydyfelin library saved

Rhydyfelin library has reopened after Rhondda Cynon Taff (RCT) council closed it for just 16 days. Over 100 people from Rhydyfelin were jubilant as the library opened

18 June 2014

spot"Self-employed" and exploited

Who do they think they're fooling? With the number of registered unemployed reportedly at an all-time low for this recession, the government again claims their policies are working

18 June 2014

spotKshama Sawant to speak at Socialism 2014

Capitalism has created a world in which just 85 people have as much wealth as the poorest half of humanity. While the rich get richer we are made to pay for a crisis of their system

18 June 2014

spotOrgreave 30th anniversary - solidarity and celebration

Alan Munro, Sheffield Socialist Party reports on Orgreave mass picnic and festival where he was a steward

18 June 2014

spotBrazil: Upsurge in struggles of workers and homeless as the World Cup begins

LSR (CWI in Brazil) members march in solidarity with striking Metro transport workers

In the context of a wave of struggle and protests in the run-up to the World Cup, the São Paulo Metro workers began a powerful strike on 5 June (temporarily suspended at the time of writing)

18 June 2014

spotStrike back for a living wage

Strike back for a living wage!

Last week I got a text from a worried workmate: "1,400 redundancies, what we going to do mate?" "We will have to fight" was my response as we discussed the announcement that 1,400 jobs are to go from Kirklees council

18 June 2014

spotTrade Unionist and Socialist Coalition campaign reports

Plymouth TUSC supporters

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) campaign in Yorkshire was a success before a single vote was cast

19 June 2014

spotDefending jobs, pay and services at Whipps Cross hospital

In April, the Unison branch secretary and stewards employed by Initial at Whipps Cross hospital resigned from Unison.

19 June 2014

spotNational Museum Wales strike

Members of the PCS at all seven sites of the National Museum Wales walked out on strike yesterday in dispute over pay

20 June 2014

spotWho's speaking 'crap' Baron Heseltine?

Baron Michael Ray Dibdin Heseltine, with his estimated personal fortune of £300 million, believes people who challenge the myth of 'more people working' are talking 'crap'

23 June 2014

spotFirefighters in good spirits during Saturday's strike

'As with the last strike it's been absolutely solid across the brigade', commented FBU Salford secretary Paul Davies

23 June 2014

spotSafety Glass strikers demonstrate their strength

Tyneside Safety Glass strikers demonstrate their strength, photo Elaine Brunskill

With a tremendous show of strength 200 Tyneside Safety Glass strikers marched through a Gateshead trading estate

24 June 2014

spotCoulson convicted: now overturn conviction of Tommy Sheridan

Andy Coulson and other News International figures gave 'evidence' during the trial of Scottish socialist Tommy Sheridan for perjury that led to Tommy's conviction

24 June 2014

spotFighting for young people in Blackwall and Cubitt Town

The contrast between the dilapidated ex-council blocks and the beacon of privilege that towers behind in Canary Wharf is extreme

24 June 2014

spotRolling strike action in HMRC

HMRC workers in Shipley had a well staffed picket line on Tuesday 24th June as part of rolling strike action across the department against the latest attacks by their management

25 June 2014

spotThomas Piketty: The new Marx?

Half-million strong TUC demo, central London, 26 March 2011, against the government's cuts, photo Senan

Review: 'Capital in the Twenty-First Century' The poorest fifth of Britain's households are among the most economically deprived in Western Europe with living standards on a par with Slovenia and the Czech Republic

25 June 2014

spotTottenham: Stop fascist attacks

Over 300 people gathered for a protest vigil in Tottenham on 23 June after a small music festival in Markfield Park was attacked by Polish fascists

25 June 2014

spotThem & Us

National scandal: The Living Wage Commission has called for one million workers to enjoy a 'living wage' by 2020. Chairman Archbishop Sentamu said: "Working and still living in poverty is a national scandal."

25 June 2014

spotReinstate Bryan Kennedy!

On 17 June, Unite rep Bryan Kennedy found out - by letter - that he had been sacked by One Housing Group (OHG). Bryan had been suspended since February. He will appeal this decision

25 June 2014

spotWestern hypocrisy as Iraq disintegrates

The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isis) continues making territorial gains, controlling much of western Iraq along the border with Syria and has captured Iraq's largest oil refinery

25 June 2014

spotBlame the profit system not its victims!

Miliband attacks young unemployed: In the same week that a new TUC report showed the dismal job prospects for young people in Con-Dem Britain, due to the miserable failure of British capitalism to invest, Labour leader Ed Miliband has launched yet another attack on us

25 June 2014

spotNHS: The world's best - but for how long?

The National Health Service (NHS) is the best healthcare system in the world!

25 June 2014

spotMiliband - the emperor with no clothes

Labour leads in the opinion polls, just, but normally, a year before a general election, if an opposition is to win it should be further ahead

25 June 2014

spotPoverty Britain

Since the defeat of the miners' strike 30 years ago successive governments have continued the work started by Thatcher to take back all the gains in living standards previously won by workers

25 June 2014

spotUnison conference: members call for united action

Unison conference, which met on 18-20 June, was dominated by three debates: strike action over pay, the Labour Party and a lack of democracy on the conference floor

25 June 2014

spotGMB members question Labour link

You can tell the general election is less than a year away when Ed Miliband, Rachel Reeves and three other senior Labour politicians descend on GMB congress to whip up the Labour vote

25 June 2014

spotWorkplace news in brief

Ritzy Cinema strike: Ritzy Cinema workers in Lambeth from the BECTU union were out on strike for a seventh time last weekend in demand of a living wage from Picturehouse Cinemas

25 June 2014

spotVictory! York socialists win university letting agency

York Student Socialist Society recently won a major victory. Our proposal for the student union at York university to open its own letting agency will become reality from August.

25 June 2014

spotWinning recruits for socialism

The Socialist Party's recruitment week was very successful. We carry reports on two of the best results

25 June 2014

spotTax dodgers feel the heat

Grimsby Socialist Party members supported UK Uncut protests against Vodafone on 14 June. The local store was forced to shut up shop that afternoon due to the protest's success

25 June 2014

spotA day in the life of a supermarket worker

I work for Tesco in a busy city centre shop. Sales figures in my shop are high, but morale is low. Like all retail workers, we are underpaid

25 June 2014

spotWhen Thatcher unleashed her attack dogs

30th anniversary of the miners' strike: Members of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) during their year-long (1984-85) battle against pit closures and mass redundancies faced the full might of the state from the Tory Thatcher government

25 June 2014

spotGerry Conlon: Fighter against state injustice

The death of Gerry Conlon in Belfast has been met with mass sympathy across the world as people are reminded of the British capitalist state's vile injustice against the Guildford Four and the Maguire Seven

25 June 2014

spotHong Kong: Pro-Beijing newspaper attacks socialists

The pro-Beijing newspaper, Ta Kung Pao, recently ran a front-page attack on pro-democracy legislator Leung Kwok-hung (known as 'Long Hair') and Socialist Action (CWI Hong Kong).

25 June 2014

spotIsrael: Nationalist thugs assault CWI members

Protest in Tel Aviv against military raids: On 21 June dozens of protesters - Jews and Arabs, including Socialist Struggle Movement (SSM) activists - held a demonstration in front of the defence ministry in Tel Aviv

25 June 2014

spotHow can Unite lead fight against cuts?

Unite Health members on the 2012 Oct 20th TUC demo, photo Senan

Around 700 delegates and 100 youth observers will attend Unite's policy conference that begins on 30 June and will set the union's agenda for the next two years

25 June 2014

spotSupermarket price wars

For Real Jobs not Workfare - Youth Fight for Jobs protest outside Tesco, photo Suzanne Beishon

In March Sainsbury's posted the first drop in like-for-like sales in nine years, the Co-operative group went into meltdown, and Morrisons announced £176 million in pre-tax losses for 2013

25 June 2014

spot10 July: All out to end poverty pay

Marching against austerity, photo Senan

It's official: local government workers in Unison have voted to strike on 10 July (J10) against the Con-Dem government's pay freeze

25 June 2014

spotPeople's Assembly demo shows anti-austerity anger

Youth Fight for Jobs on the 21 June 2014 People's Assembly demo, photo Sarah Wrack

On 21 June, a demonstration called by the People's Assembly marched to parliament to show opposition to austerity

25 June 2014

spotCoulson conviction: Cameron must resign!

An 'apology' from David Cameron, is nowhere near enough. He is desperately trying to wriggle his way out of this latest stinking scandal: the now undisputed criminality of the man he appointed as his chief press officer. Cameron and his rotten government should resign immediately and a general election be called

25 June 2014

spot'Freedom Riders' attacked by police

Around 60 of us had travelled together by train into Sheffield without paying as part of the continuing Freedom Ride campaign

26 June 2014

spotPathology workers in Northampton hospital take action

Unite members in Pathology at Northampton General Hospital (NGH) are commenced industrial action at midnight on 25 June

27 June 2014

spotGMB council workers to join 10 July strike

The GMB said council and school workers voted by three to one to walk out on 10 July over a pay offer worth 1% to most

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