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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 May 2014

Transport workers' international meeting

Steve Metcalfe, RMT delegate to WFTU

On 25 April the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) held the transport workers' section conference in London.

Delegates from France (CGT), UK (RMT), Germany, Italy (CGIL), Portugal, Greece, Cyprus and the Republic of Ireland attended, giving detailed reports prior to the euro elections of 22 May.

The disgraceful role of the neoliberal and social democratic parties in abetting the anti-labour policies of the neoliberal European Union were roundly condemned by all.

Particularly mindful were delegates of the EU/EC's plans for Minimum Services Requirement laws for public transport ie, a virtual transport strike ban. The phrase in the WFTU general secretary George Mavrikos' report was "penalising union struggles" and the employers' desire to "eliminate the right to strike". The stance is militant and unequivocal.

Another EC directive targeted for destruction was the Fourth Railway Package which 'reforms' European railways by privatisation of all European railways on the same model implemented by successive Tory and Labour governments in Britain, even though this has obviously been a failure.

This is seen as an integral part of the plans of monopoly capitalism to attack the historical conquests of the working class and break the resistance of the railway workers in their respective countries. Needless to say this statement was passed 100%.

Discussion then passed to the vicious attacks on workers' rights especially in south east Europe, Greece and Cyprus. We then moved on to the danger of war, in which transport workers would be in the firing line, especially in light of the Ukraine crisis.

The conference was a positive development. International working class solidarity is the order of the day.

What I say is we also need a new workers' international generally to lead our movement towards socialism.

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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 14 May 2014:


Vote Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

For the millions not the billionaires

Fight back at the ballot box on 22 May

Building Labour: when workers first formed own party

Southampton: Showing what's possible

Liverpool City Council 1983-87: "We had a choice"

Why we're standing as TUSC candidates

On the campaign trail with TUSC


Socialist Party news and analysis

Ukip - the establishment's 'anti-establishment' party

Housing evictions - main parties to blame

Gove robs education budget to fund 'Free Schools'

Them & Us


Socialist Party feature

What's socialism got to do with fighting austerity?


International socialist news and analysis

South Africa: The ANC victory, WASP and the EFF

Capitalist politicians can't solve Boko Haram crisis

Ireland: Election campaigns "referendum on austerity"


Socialist Party workplace news

Care UK strike: NHS workers v NHS privatisation

PCS: Re-election of a fighting, socialist leadership

Leadership challenged at Usdaw conference

Brighton: Determined to fight college cuts

Transport workers' international meeting

Workplace news in brief

Fight together for pay rise - Come to NSSN conference


Readers' reviews

TV review: In the Flesh


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Fight back to scrap junk jobs

Freedom Riders- action brings victory

Building TUSC, building socialism

Donate to the election appeal!

Why I joined the Socialist Party


 

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Related links:

Transport:

triangleTransport workers and passengers mustn't pay the price

triangleTransport union RMT tells members: refuse to work in unsafe conditions

triangleNo increase in transport capacity without adequate safety precautions

triangleLondon transport: Reject the ‘choice’ of safety or revenue

European:

triangleA new world order - global reconstruction after World War Two

triangleThe 'national unity' threat to Corbynism

triangleMay ends in June! Boot out the Tories!

RMT:

triangleFight P&O's billionaire bosses' jobs cut plan

triangleTories put profit before lives - unions must stand firm on workplace safety

triangleRMT: Lift the suspension of Steve Hedley

Cyprus:

triangleGreece crisis - please vote Leave

triangleSolidarity with Cypriot workers

Greece:

triangleGreece-Turkey border refugee crisis

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