Stand Up to Racism Trade Union conference 4 February 2017

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The election of Donald Trump in the US and the growth of anti-migrant and Islamophobic scapegoating in Britain and elsewhere have left millions of people fearful of the growth of racism.

Politicians and the media have ramped up the rhetoric against immigration while Theresa May has put the ending of the free movement of labour at the heart of her Brexit strategy.

Stand Up to Racism is organising a conference for those who believe trade unionists have to fight the attempts to divide working class people. We are stronger together, in the fight against austerity and ruthless employers.

We want to:

  • Defend our EU workmates and make sure their rights are maintained after Brexit.
  • Oppose attempts to blame migrants for falling wages and the slashing of our public services.
  • Arm trade union activists with the arguments they need to defeat racist ideas in the workplaces.
  • Build the biggest possible turn out by trade unionists on the Stand Up To Racism demos in London and Glasgow (backed by the TUC) on 18 March 2017.

Join us 12pm on Saturday 4th February for the Stand Up To Racism Trade Union Conference at (Mander Hall) NUT Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London WC1H 9BD. Facebook event here

Register for conference here:

SUTR model motion to support conference here:

Invitation to launch meeting of NW London Stand Up to Racism

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TUESDAY 22nd November 2016
6.30pm to 8.30pm
PEPPERPOT CLUB, 1a Thorpe Close, Ladbroke Grove, LONDON, W10 5XL

Tackling racism remains one of the key challenges in our society. Refugees are still being left to drown or face squalor in camps such as Calais, while there’s beeen a rise in reported hate crimes in Britain since the referendum. And we’ve seen racism come to the fore elsewhere – from police killings in the US to burkini bans in France.

But there has also been resistance. Refugees have refused to be locked out, while thousands have taken to the streets in the US and Britain to say “Black Lives Matter”, race hate crimes have been met by communities coming together to reject the scapegoating of migrants.

Come to the public rally to discuss how we can build on all this to confront the rise of racism.

Irish to commemorate the 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street against Mosley’s Fascists

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Time: 11.30 am

Date: Sunday 9th October 2016

Place: Altab Ali Park, 40 Adler Street, London E1 1DU

Nearest tube station: Aldgate East

On 9th October, we will be commemorating the 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street. It is important that we have an Irish presence at this event and we will be expecting thousands of other people to attend. The Irish played a pivotal role in smashing the British Union of Fascists at the Battle of Cable Street. Not only were the Irish part of the backbone of at least 100, 000 counter demonstrators but were to outnumber the British Union of Fascists (BUF), 10 to 1. Their leader Oswald Mosley was humiliated and decided not to allow the British Fascist Black Shirts to go ahead with the march as the police could not contain the riots from the counter demonstrators. Oswald Mosley’s popularity in Britain was to sink enormously! Not even the Fascist sympathiser, King Edward VIII, could save Mosley, and we, still, question the real reason for this monarch’s abdication in the same year! It is a victorious event that the Irish in Britain should never forget!

Everyone will assemble at Altab Ali Park, London E1 at 12 noon on Sunday 9th October. Probably, we may organise an early assemble for the Irish presence. We, then, march to the Cable Street in St. George’s Gardens for a rally with speakers and stalls. Further details will follow and we could look into the possibility of organising a late afternoon event in the Cock Tavern Pub in Euston.

There is every reason to have a proper Irish presence for the 80th Anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street as it is 100 years since the 1916 Easter Rising!

For further information, please contact

Austin Harney,

Joint Secretary of the South East Trade Union Race Relations Committee,

au5tin67@yahoo.co.uk

AGM 2016: BTUC Ready to Campaign

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A big thank you goes out to everyone who came to our annual general meeting. Barnet TUC elected its committee for the new year and had a series of excellent speakers who sparked off an excellent debate about how we as movement can take the struggle for social justice forwards for another year.

Our first speaker was the academic and activist Linda Kaucher, who came talk about the threat posed to equality and democracy by the transatlantic treaties know as TTIP and, more urgently in her view, CETA. Although these are packaged for the public as “trade” agreements, Linda warns that they have very little if anything to do with trade, and everything to do with deregulation. Tariffs between EU and North American countries, she points out, are and have been very low for a long time, but standards of regulation to protect health, safety and the environment are much higher. Big business is lobbying hard for these treaties because it does not want such protections to get in the way of profits. An interesting debate ensued about the implications of this, and what it might mean in terms of the forthcoming EU referendum, but there was consensus that more needs to be done to oppose TTIP.

The next speaker was local councillor and new leader of the Barnet Council Labour group, Barry Rawlings. The Labour (and Lib Dem) counsellors have challenged the hard-rightwing Tory council this year by submitting complete alternative budgets, approved as valid by the council finance officers. Barry emphasised that the Tories have been pushing for massive cuts and privatisation by claiming that they have no choice in the matter because of reduced revenue (itself a Tory policy, of course, though they ignore this!), whereas the budget he’d moved showed that there was in fact a range of political choices that can be made in allocating resources. Among other things, they had had a proposal to replace all 800 social homes that are currently being lost through council regeneration projects, as well as significant defence of care services through use of a ring-fenced council take increase that would cost Barnet residents no more than 10p a week. The Labour group has invited the wider movement to have some constructive input into what choices a progressive council, that we could achieve, would do. There was very enthusiastic discussion about this, as no issue is more urgent in Barnet right now than putting a stop to the extreme austerity agenda. We all agreed though, that further resistance is also needed between now and the potential election of a new council, if there is to be any public services left to utilise, and libraries continue to be one of the key front-lines.

The evening was rounded off by Ian Hodson, national president of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union. He’d come to our meeting directly from spending the afternoon on a picket line of striking Junior Doctors, who he hailed as fighting a battle for us all and warned us not to let them be another National Union of Mineworkers. He proceeded to give a wide-ranging speech about the goals of his union and its struggle for equal rights and fair pay for young workers, who are massively exploited at the moment. He also emphasised the importance of the struggle against rise of racism, represented by the outrageous rhetoric that David Cameron has used against refugees. BTUC will be organising a Barnet meet-up for the March 19th demonstration against racism in London in that spirit.

stop the nazis at golders green

STOP THE NAZIS at Golders Green 4th of July

It is an appalling provocation by a tiny group of British neo Nazis who have announced an anti Semitic demonstration, in London, on July 4th. That it is proposed to be in Golders Green, an area, of course, where many Jews have long resided, among London’s multicultural communities, is doubly insulting, to all, Jewish and non Jewish.

The choice of the Jewish Sabbath is a particular insult to observant members of the Jewish community.
This is the second time Nazis have called a recent mobilisation against the Jewish community. However, their demonstration in Hackney could only get around 24 fascists including the long time fascist, ex National Front leader, Martin Webster. Fortunately, local anti fascists resolutely opposed the Nazis. The Clapton Nazi event in April, was opposed by hundreds from the diverse area, that is East London. They did not pass, and nor should there be any platform again, for these little Hitlers.

This sickening, fascist move is particularly repellent in the year that marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. The fascists will be opposed by all who detest their poison. Quite rightly, Jewish groups, including the Board of Deputies of British Jews, have condemned what is totally unacceptable. This is not solely a matter for Jewish people but for all who believe in democracy, freedom of faith, and oppose Nazism.

It is essential to say ‘the Jewish community has every right to express its opposition to this demonstration’. In a climate of Islamophobia and anti Semitism across Europe with the likes of the Front National, Jobbik and Golden Dawn, pushing such filth, we need unity.

Webster and Griffin were defeated by mass movements against their filth. We need a big protest to show that Nazism is rejected by the vast majority. The EDL have been severely weakened by community mobilisations and the active support of trade unionists, and those of faith. UAF calls for all anti fascists to stop the new Nazis getting a toehold in London.

We ask you to sign this statement, and publicise it/ the anti fascist demonstration, on July 4th, in your school, college, work place, faith group, community. Send signatures to info@uaf.org.ukwith Name-Trade Union-Workplace-Faith Group etc.

Signatories:

Jeremy Corbyn MP

Diane Abbott MP

Edie Friedman – Jewish Council for Racial Equality

Julie Hesmondhalgh  – Actress

Francesa Martinez – Comedian, Writer, Actress

Mark Serwotka – PCS Union General Secretary

Dave Ward – CWU General Secretary

Len McCluskey – Unite the  Union General Secretary

Kevin Courtney -NUT Union Deputy General Secretary

Alex Kenny – NUT NEC

Tony Kearns – Senior Deputy General Secretary  – CWU Union

Michael Rosen- Poet/Author

Chris Keates – NASUWT Gen Secretary

Julia Bard, National Committee, Jewish Socialists’ Group.

David Rosenberg, author of “Battle for the East End: Jewish responses to fascism in the 1930s”

Max Levitas – Cable Street veteran

Weyman Bennett – UAF Joint Secretary

Sabby Dhalu – UAF Joint Secretary

Patrick Hunter – Barnet TUC Secretary – Barnet UNISON

Helen Davies – Barnet UNISON – Barnet TUC (PC)

John Burgess – Barnet UNISON Branch Secretary

Lindsey German – Stop the War Convenor

Sam Fairbairn – People’s Assembly

Shakira Martin – National Union of Students (NUS) Vice President – FE

Aaron Kiely – NUS NEC

Paul Mackney – Greek Solidarity Campaign

Gerry Gable – Searchlight Magazine Editor/ Publisher

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