Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/846/20215
Campaigns news in brief
It is clear the Socialist Party Northern region is taking important steps forward in party building.
At our conference on 28 February we had a number of shop stewards from various unions. This included Steve Nevin, who likened the party to a small stone pushed from a mountain top that causes an avalanche. He commented: "Woe betide anyone who gets in the way of that avalanche!"
The conference raised £180 fighting fund appeal and sold £50 of books.
Walking through Bradford at times, it is palpable the amount of people begging on the streets. The latest cuts will further impoverish this city. If you are a Whitehall minister with no actual clue where Bradford is, job done I suspect.
About 30 lobbied the town council on 26 February to protest £170 million in cuts. The city will have seven TUSC candidates in May's local elections.
Leeds students protest
Youth work students from Leeds Beckett University joined the lobby of the council's budget-setting meeting organised by Leeds trades council.
This year sees an extra £50 million cut, on top of around £200m passed in recent years. The council will have lost 2,000 staff, as well as countless services including day centres and care homes.
Council home rents are due to go up by an inflation-busting 5.9%.
Flagship at half mast
Labour-run Birmingham council has cut the opening time of its flagship Central Library (only opened in September 2013) from 73 hours a week to 40. To add insult to injury, the Institute of Directors is opening an office in the premises.
Notts care cuts
Labour-run Nottinghamshire council has agreed to close three of its last six council-run care homes.
Over 10,000 signed petitions opposing the closure of all six - the original proposal. The campaign saved three.
Our fight goes on, but closures will probably mean 50 long-term residents moving to private homes and 100 job losses.
Pete Watson, Nottinghamshire Unison (personal capacity)
A £45 million cuts budget was passed by Carmarthenshire council thanks to the backing of Labour and independent councillors.
But, as stated at the meeting, the council has £73.5 million in reserves which have doubled in the last five years. They should implement Carmarthenshire Unison's no-cuts budget.
The council will find it a lot easier to vote for cuts than implement them. They have already backed down repeatedly when pressure is put on them. This pressure will build. If Labour councillors won't oppose cuts then we need councillors that will.
Mark Evans, Carmarthenshire Unison (personal capacity)
In The Socialist 4 March 2015:
Socialist Party news and analysis
International Women's Day
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party reports and campaigns