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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 December 2011

Reading the riots

Suzanne Beishon, Youth Fight for Jobs

A Guardian/London School of Economics study has shown that Britain's summer 'riots' were fuelled by anger at injustice, the lack of money, jobs and opportunity, and how young people "felt they were treated compared with others".

A former Met police chief, Lord Stevens, has predicted years of public disorder due to the economic crisis.

This confirms the riots were not the result of "pure criminality" nor the breakdown of families, as Tories and right-wing commentators say. They happened because young people felt completely cast aside.

As a 23 year-old in Wavertree, Liverpool said: "It doesn't really matter if it's Labour or Conservative because the people behind the scenes are always the same, but especially this particular Conservative government ... It's in their eyes, you know what I mean? They hate the lower classes."

Sky-high levels of youth unemployment; education being snatched away; youth services being closed down; combined with the police harassment of young people, especially black and Asian youth, under the hated 'stop and search' laws - that's why we saw an outpouring of raw anger, as Youth Fight for Jobs (YFJ) said at the time.

YFJ supporters do not condone violence. We are building a movement where young people fight alongside trade unionists and anti-cuts campaigners, so that legitimate anger can be channelled positively.

YFJ organised meetings and protests in Tottenham, where the first 'riot' took place following the police killing of Mark Duggan.

YFJ demands real jobs, training schemes and apprenticeships. We say no to slave labour 'workfare' schemes. Education is a right, fees should be abolished and EMA reinstated. We call for a programme of house rebuilding and refurbishment to create affordable social housing and to provide work.

We demand a future. The rich carry on getting richer while we see our youth clubs closed - why should we pay for their crisis?

Get in touch with YFJ: www.youthfightforjobs.com

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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 7 December 2011:


Socialist Party feature

Con-Dems pile on the misery - 'Enough is enough'


Socialist Party editorial

Eurozone crisis - capitalists have no solution


Workplace news and analysis

Cuts and misery - it doesn't have to be like this

Socialist MEP supports public sector strike

"The genie is out of the bottle"

30 November strike: a historic day!

Building a fighting union - interview with Steve Hedley

Defend the JIB, victory to the sparks!

Reinstate Paul Kelly: Solidarity with Portsmouth RMT

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party news and analysis

Tory sleaze is back!

Reading the riots

All in it together

Them & Us


Climate change

Climate change and extreme weather


Housing crisis

Homes Crisis: Fund housing need - not fat cat greed!


International socialist news and analysis

Portugal: Build on the general strike action

Ireland: Resist latest austerity attacks

Tamil Solidarity: Gearing up for 2012

Brazilian socialists remember Socrates


Socialist Party reviews

Theatre review

When workers planned production: the Lucas Aerospace plan


 

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Related links:

Riots:

triangleUSA - another cop killing of unarmed black man sparks widespread protests

triangleThe Cameron Tory legacy

triangleStonewall riots' legacy shows need for socialist struggle to win LGBT+ liberation

trianglePeterloo: "If the people were to rise and smite their enemies, was not this the time?" Samuel Bamford, demonstrator

triangleChesterfield Socialist Party: Race riots in the US 50 years ago

Youth:

triangleEngage for Change Hull - trade union youth festival goes online

triangleBristol Socialist Party: Organise, Fight - the Socialist Youth charter

triangleYouth without a future: fight for jobs and homes - fight for socialism!

triangleMore youth protests take aim at capitalism

YFJ:

triangleYFJ to join 'free education' demo

triangleOsborne attacks youth... we take to the streets!

triangleYFJ plans 'occupy style' protest - 11th July

Young people:

triangleAfter Scottish government U-turn, Young Socialists fight for a future on A-Level results day

triangleA-level results day 2020: Fight for our future!

Jobs:

triangleCampaign stalls on jobs, pay, NHS and racism

Police:

triangleBooks that inspired me: The Mother

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