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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 September 2019
Socialist Party Youth and Student national meeting - opportunities for building the party on many fronts
Socialist Party young workers' and students' meeting, 31 August to 1 September 2019 (Click to enlarge)
Young Socialist Party activists from across England, Wales and Scotland met for a weekend of discussion on 31 August - 1 September, just as the capitalist political crisis in the UK was tipping into a new explosive phase.
The scene was set for the discussion by Socialist Party members attending the London protest against Boris Johnson's suspension of parliament beforehand.
We took to the streets with the demands to fight for a general election to get the Tories out, to elect a Corbyn government with socialist policies, and no to unity with the austerity politicians.
September will see students return to college and university in the midst of this crisis. The 'Earth strike' on 20 September has the potential to take on a new dimension as a means to fight the Tories, and the issue of free education could re-emerge with Corbyn fighting another general election on his anti-austerity programme.
This term will also see University and Colleges Union (UCU) college union ballot its members for strike action in universities on the issue of both pensions and equal pay. In the event of a strike we can anticipate a groundswell of support among students, with Socialist Students at the fore, in the same way as we saw in the UCU pension strikes of 2018.
A key factor in events in the next period will be the extent to which the working-class through the trade unions take a lead. We discussed the what we can do about the problems facing us as young workers in our workplaces. We discussed the issue of unpaid hours foisted on us at work, along with the issues of zero-hours and insecure contracts, of bullying bosses and low pay.
Members reported on the task of building our trade unions into effective organisations to take on these issues; whether by transforming our union branches or by building the union in workplaces from scratch.
Being a member of the Socialist Party gives us a unique advantage in this struggle and young members are determined to build the party. We understand that workers and young people will play a central role in transforming the political crisis in Britain but also in the struggle to change society along socialist lines.
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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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- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 4 September 2019:
What we think
Tories out now - Corbyn in with socialist policies
Marches, blockades, strikes, occupations... How can protests win?
Money doesn't make up for cuts - education unions must organise for funding and against Tory attacks
Bury expelled from football league: Boot out the bosses ruining our game
Dozens of protests say Boris must go - Socialist Party policies heard on TV
20 September climate action day: Strike to save the planet!
Climate action day - trade union round-up
Austerity anger feeds movement for Welsh independence
What strategy can end the retail jobs massacre?
Workplace victory emboldens retail workers to get organised
TUC: name the day for a mass demo
Nottingham college workers plan 15 days of walkouts
Science Museum Group staff strike over pay restraint
DVSA strike: action impacting
South Western Railway guards strike against DOO
London bus workers protest for better hours and conditions
International socialist news and analysis
Hong Kong protests: No let-up in trial of strength
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist Party Youth and Student national meeting
Priced out of Pride
Bradford demo: Self-determination for Kashmir
At 96 I'm more convinced of socialism than ever
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