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From: The Socialist issue 721, 6 June 2012: NHS cuts... Pension cuts... RESIST CUTS!

Search site for keywords: Unemployed - Jobs - Jubilee - Pay - Olympics

We won't be a lost generation - Fight for jobs and education!

Jubilee exploitation

Driven 100 miles from home, told to sleep under a bridge and get changed in public at 5.30am, then work a 14 hour shift for no pay. That's what was happening to one group of jobseekers while the privileged royals and their cronies enjoyed a cruise down the river during the bank holiday weekend.

The Guardian reported that 30 unemployed people and another 50 on measly apprenticeship wages were bussed in from Bristol to London to work at the Jubilee river pageant for security firm Close Protection UK, which has the contract to run security at the Olympics as well as the Jubilee.

The firm claims the work was not compulsory because nobody would lose their benefits. But all participants were told that if they didn't do it for free this time, they would have no chance of being paid to do similar work during the Olympics this summer. And what's worse, they were all promised paid work until they got on the bus!

Close Protection UK would like us to understand their plight - apparently they have spent 220 on training for each person taking part and another 100 on uniform. That's very 'generous', but what does it have to do with their not paying a day's wage for a day's work?

The scheme is part of the Con-Dems' Work Programme - supposedly all about getting people back to work but increasingly obviously just about using the unemployed to help big business increase their profits without having to pay anything out in wages.

A better way to 'get people back to work' would be investing in a programme of public works to create millions of socially useful jobs.

Sarah Wrack

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

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.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • 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.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

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