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From The Socialist newspaper, 22 April 2015

Elections 2015: Why I'm standing

A breath of fresh air next to stuffed shirts!

Megan Ollerhead TUSC parliamentary candidate for York Central spoke to the Socialist.
Why are you standing in this election?

I believe it's crucial to offer people an electoral alternative to austerity. There 100% has to be an anti-austerity party standing candidates in as many places as possible.

I'm facing a lot of the issues that TUSC is campaigning on. I'm a young woman, a student, in mountains of immediate debt and struggling with rent.

You can't underestimate the difference it makes for young people seeing someone in the elections who is genuinely one of them.

I'm not a career politician - I hope that I'll be a breath of fresh air in the election next to all the stuffed shirts parachuted in for their careers!

What issues will be most important to voters in this election?

The NHS will be crucial in this election. A lot of people are genuinely frightened about its future in the hands of the capitalist parties.

I think that the housing crisis will be a major point this year as well. Rents are almost half of monthly income now, and council house building has all but ground to a halt.

I've done a lot of work on housing in the York area, presiding over a new not-for-profit letting project at the University, so I'll be making housing a main focus.

How could you afford to implement your policies?

It wouldn't be by cutting benefits and services, for a start! The money is available, it's just that the wrong people have got hold of it. Resources could be easily managed to meet the needs of the 99%.

Money should be invested in public services instead of lining the pockets of private shareholders. Public services should be run in the interest of the people.

The commanding heights of the economy must be nationalised for the good of the country. Nationalised industries run far better than private ones: East Coast rail for instance.

It was the cheapest and most efficient sector of the railways before it was bought out by Virgin. All that privatisation does is encourage a race to the bottom for workers' wages and conditions.

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is an electoral alliance involving the RMT transport union, the Socialist Party, other socialist groups and leading members of other trade unions. This May TUSC is standing 135 candidates in the general election and 619 in the local elections.

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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 22 April 2015:

Socialist Party news and analysis

Stop NHS cuts!

Election: Distorted effect of anger against austerity

Labour is facing electoral oblivion in Scotland

Fleeing refugees drown in 'Mediterranean cemetery'

Beyond the Pale - capitalism and the environment

Tories reassure tax avoiders

Them & Us

Socialist history

30 years ago: 250,000 school students walked out.

Elections 2015

TUSC's election broadcast - "at last - a left wing alternative"

TUSC v broadcasters and banksters

York Central: 'A breath of fresh air'

Standing up for workers in Derby South

Election appeal update

Socialist Party workplace news

Usdaw conference

Pay issues dominate at Unison Health conference

Kone engineers

CWU conference: We need a fighting trade union

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Fast food workers hungry for justice

Housing crisis: We demand rent controls!

NUS women's conference

Readers' comments

Dallas dreams or fracking nightmare?

Janner scandal: ruling class closes ranks


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