Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/639/10293
From The Socialist newspaper, 22 September 2010
Save Southampton Libraries
On 15 September, dozens of striking Southampton library workers, Unison members, lobbied the Tory council as part of their fourth day of strike action. This is a long running dispute over the attempt to close and downgrade Southampton libraries, replacing qualified librarians with volunteers.
Presenting a petition of 4,500 signatories, library worker Bob Cole made a deputation to the council outlining the views of workers, children and the community who use these services. It would take over fifty volunteers to replace the library posts that were going.
Like the mad hatter from Alice in Wonderland, Tory councillor John Hannides attacked the union for spreading misinformation, claiming the council was not closing libraries or replacing librarians with volunteers, despite the fact that Millbrook librarians are being moved, with no plans to keep the library open, and Thornhill librarians are being moved and replaced with volunteers!
Strikers were outraged at Hannides' outburst and are determined to stop these cuts. The verbal support of Labour councillors was an obvious boost to the strikers but cannot be relied on, given their plans to make cuts of their own if elected to run the council.
The Socialist Party gives full support to the demands of the library workers and is calling for wider action to be taken to stop other cuts to services on the council, to link up with other local campaigns against cuts as a means of maximising the pressure on local councillors to reverse them.
With elections in May looming, anti-cuts candidates should prepare now to challenge the cuts budget of all three parties and put councillors in the chamber who are prepared to back a real fight to save jobs and services.
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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal
The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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In The Socialist 22 September 2010:
Brutal bosses? Time to fight back!
Birmingham: Solidarity with council workers
Socialist Party youth and students
Stop the higher education lock out!
The Student Socialist:: Issue 8 £1.50
International socialist news and analysis
For a 24-hour all-Europe general strike
Spain: class struggle the biggest show in town
Kashmir: An eyewitness to oppression in the valley
'Death of democracy' in Sri Lanka
Socialism 2010 - a weekend of discussion and debate
Socialist Party news and analysis
Countering the Con-Dem government's offensive
Stroud says no to BNP media centre
Bosses want workers' pensions axed
Trade unionists challenge Lib-Dems
CNWP extended steering committee meeting
Socialist Party workplace news and analysis
The sorry saga of Corus steel
Ex-Jarvis workers face more attacks
Tyneside Safety Glass: Stop the decline to the minimum wage!
Workplace news in brief
Fight every Con-Dem cut
Hastings demo against attacks on union officials
Organising to save jobs and services
Determined, widespread union action needed
Why London firefighters oppose 'reforms'
23 October march against cuts: RMT calls London demo
Socialist Party feature
The beauty industry: out of control?
Socialist Party campaigns
Coventry 'one-stop' protest
Building the anti-cuts fightback: Local campaign launches
Save Southampton Libraries
The Socialist 22 September 2010 |
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