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From The Socialist newspaper, 28 October 2020

Waltham Forest Save Our Square:

Mass outside meeting draws up battle plan

Save Our Square protesters in Walthamstow, photo Paul Mattsson

Save Our Square protesters in Walthamstow, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Linda Taaffe, Waltham Forest Socialist Party

A breath of fresh air. After being huddled over a computer in endless Zoom discussions for nine months, it was great to be outside again in the town square, doing what the Socialist Party has been doing for five years: campaigning to stop corporate greed disfiguring our town square with monster blocks of totally unaffordable flats.

In February 2018, one of our first mass activities was an occupation-demo in the square involving hundreds and hundreds of people. On 24 October, 100 people responded to the call from the Save Our Square campaign, alarmed at the council's new juggernaut plans, with a miniscule number of flats for council tenants.

Last year, Waltham Forest council partially stepped back and agreed to save the avenue of beautiful lime trees, due for demolition in the redevelopment.

Next year, the plans would have run out of time, and been wiped off the books. Victory was so close.

With the Covid crisis, these councillors - handmaidens of craven property developers - seem to think that the previous opposition will just die away, that they can bring back the old plans in a new form and get away with it this time. No Way!

The square meeting drew up a battle plan:

Above all, Nancy Taaffe, a Socialist Party member and chair of Save Our Square, made a call to campaigners and trade unionists to stand for council in the next elections. We, the campaigners, would make different decisions - stopping property giants and start building council homes at council rents.

Everyone cheered at the end of the meeting, pleased that we now have a growing body of people who've had enough and are willing to fight - whatever it takes.

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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 28 October 2020:


What we think

Tories' school meals outrage


Coronavirus News

Don't let Tories starve our kids

Tory 'Starve a Kid to Save a Quid' scheme

Boots launches 120, 12-minute Covid test

Under the microscope


Workplace News

Backing Hugo Pierre for Unison general secretary

Royal Mail: No more behind closed doors talks

Fight Leeds Labour council's massive cuts

Workplace news in brief


News

NHS England's 1bn winter shortfall: we need union action, not platitudes!

BAME Covid deaths due to capitalist inequality, confirms government

Mayor and government compete to attack London transport: fight for no cuts!

Grenfell watch: landlord's 800,000 saving


Food Standards

Food and a capitalist Brexit: No trust in Tory Deals!


International News

Nigeria protests shake regime

"We need a leadership that comes from the movement"

Bolivia elections: Crushing defeat for the right as MAS secures landslide victory

US presidential election


Campaigns

Online youth rally says: We won't pay with our futures

Birmingham: 'Refund our fees' protests

Solidarity with the movement in Nigeria

Evicted students can fight back and win

Waltham Forest Save Our Square:

Why I joined the Socialist Party - "I'm 15, and already I've lived through two global recessions and a pandemic"

Bristol jobs protest: We want 100% pay


Readers' Opinion

One rule for them, and another for us

Books that inspired me: Germinal

The Socialist Inbox


 

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Related links:

Waltham Forest:

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