#GeneralElectionNow – Labour Assembly Against Austerity

RALLY: General Election Now! Time for a Corbyn-Government

Rally with John McDonnell // Diane Abbott // Richard Burgon & more.
Friday June 21, 6.30pm, Mander Hall, Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London, WC1H 9BD.  RSVP, Share & Invite here


Hosted by the Socialist Campaign Group of Labour MPs, this rally will open the Arise 2019 – a festival of Labour’s left ideas festival, and all Friday + Saturday tickets will include a ticket to this. These can be bought at www.arise-festival.com/tickets.

A limited number of tickets for the Friday night rally only are also available, also at www.arise-festival.com/tickets – get yours today!

#GeneralElectionNow
#JC4PM

LESE Race Relations Committee: Celebrate the Windrush Generation – Wednesday 26 June 2019

TUC Congress House, 6 – 8.30pm

  The LESE Race Relations Committee invite you to join them celebrate the Windrush generation and remember the suffering that the Windrush scandal has caused. It is time for a change, in attitude, how people are perceived. The Windrush generation and their families did nothing wrong and do not deserve the treatment experienced.

Guest Speakers include:

Betty Joseph, Chair, LESE Race Relations Committee and NEU

Arthur Torrington, Windrush Foundation

Nairobi Thompson, Writer and Poet

Patrick Vernon, Social commentator and political activist

Scratchylus, Musician who promotes consciousness and edutainment

Zita Holbourne, Co-founder of Black Activist Rising Against Cuts (BARAC)

Please register: 020 7467 1220 / lese@tuc.org.uk

This event is hosted by the LESE Race Relations Committee

Thanks to CWU event support

We need a general election

The Prime Minister is right to have resigned. She has now accepted what the country has known for months: she cannot govern, and nor can her divided and disintegrating party.

The burning injustices she promised to tackle three years ago are even starker today.

The Conservative Party has utterly failed the country over Brexit and is unable to improve people’s lives or deal with their most pressing needs.

Parliament is deadlocked and the Conservatives offer no solutions to the other major challenges facing our country.

The last thing the country needs is weeks of more Conservative infighting followed by yet another unelected Prime Minister.

Whoever becomes the new Conservative Leader must let the people decide our country’s future, through an immediate general election.

11 June – No Silence Please! It’s Barnet’s Library Review

Please join us on Tuesday 11 June 2019 at 6:30pm at Hendon Town Hall. We are holding a short protest prior to speaking at the Communities Leadership and Libraries (CLL) Committee meeting at 7pm. Please invite your friends and neighbours to come along too – children are welcome!

As you may have heard, the Minister for Culture recently refused our complaint about the Barnet Library Service. Unfortunately, his decision shows a blatant determination to ignore the evidence of Barnet residents and let the Council off the hook.  You can read our response here.

In spite of this, the Council wasn’t able to get away completely unscathed: one important outcome of the complaint process is the Council’s long-awaited “Library Review”. In this, the Council must explore the impact of the library cuts on groups protected by the Equalities Acts – including children, older people, and those with disabilities. Not suprisingly, these are the groups most affected by unstaffed libraries, reduced facilities and locked toilets.


The process for the review is due to be announced at the CLL meeting. We need your support to put pressure on the committee to carry out a meaningful review that listens to residents’ views and really looks at the impact of the cuts. Please help us to get all our voices heard. 

The review is timely: you may have read about the recent report of the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty which finds “unheard-of levels of loneliness and isolation” and links this to austerity policies, including shrinking library services. 

We will be organising speakers for the meeting – reply to this email by Monday 3 June if you want to participate. We are also collecting your stories about the library service – email us or share them via our facebook page or website.

Wed 5 June – Protest at the Council’s attack on Independent Living

URGENT ….. LOBBY AGAINST CUTS TO INDEPENDENT LIVINGWEDNESDAY 5 JUNE, 6.30pm. Hendon Town Hall
Over 50 people attended a meeting on Tuesday organised by BAPS and UNISON to hear about the latest callous attack on those most in need in Barnet. Local disabled residents explained at the meeting the devastating impact this will have on their lives.
Even though the council social services budget is underspent, Barnet Tories want to make a saving. Rather than using the underspend to fill the 50-odd vacant social worker posts, the tories wants cut the budget. Is that because it will use the underspend to finance the overspend in the contract with Capita? 
The meeting agreed to lobby and protest at the Council Adult & Safeguarding Committee on Wednesday 5 June. Meet at 6.30pm outside the Town Hall, The Burroughs, Hendon.

How does Barnet Council wants to save £424,000?

Disabled resident may be forced to move into residential care against their wishes rather than being supported in their community near family and friends, if Barnet Council thinks residential care is a cheaper option. Barnet Council recognises that disabled residents, their families and carers may not like this.

Barnet Council recognises that forcing a disabled resident to move into residential care might be bad for their well-being. Inclusion Barnet, an organisation led by and for people who are disabled, has written to Barnet Council in January 2019. They are still waiting for a reply, yet they represent Barnet disabled residents.

“Michael Nolan, a trustee of the disabled people’s organisation Inclusion Barnet, told Disability News Service: “The Inclusion Barnet board are extremely concerned about these proposals, which we fear could leave some disabled people confined to residential care when they might otherwise have been able to live independently. We believe that this could impact people least able to self-advocate, and is also against the spirit of the Care Act.”

BENEFITS SANCTIONS: a critical issue for the Labour Party

Thursday 6 June – 7.30pm
Greek Cypriot Centre, Britannia Road, N12 9 RU

Meeting and discussion with David Webster and Stop Universal Credit campaigner

David Webster is a Senior Research Fellow at Glasgow University. He is currently carrying out an in-depth investigation into disallowances and sanctions in the UK unemployment insurance system.

Benefits used to be run on insurance principles – but the Blair government bought into the whole ideology of conditionality, sanctions and workfare. A research by the IFS concludes that almost 2million people will lose £1,000 a year with universal credit, and that it is those on disability benefits and low incomes who will be among the worst affected.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Trump’s State Visit – Just 2 Weeks Away!

Having withdrawn from the hard-won nuclear deal with Iran over a year ago, the US has tightened already punitive sanctions, moved an aircraft carrier, B-52 bombers, and extra missiles to the Gulf region and held top level discussions about deploying as many as 120,000 troops to the area.

Any military action against Iran would lead to a devastating war that would draw in the whole of the Middle East and has the potential to escalate into a global conflict.

The Together Against Trump Protest against his State Visit on June 4th is the perfect opportunity to demand an end to his terrifying brinkmanship with Iran. Join us on the anti-war and peace bloc in two weeks time!

Employers not doing enough to keep pregnant women safe at work, TUC and Maternity Action warn

The TUC and Maternity Action have today (Wednesday) warned that employers are not doing enough to protect pregnant women at work.

  • New guidance published to protect new and expectant mothers 

The TUC and Maternity Action have today (Wednesday) warned that employers are not doing enough to protect pregnant women at work. 

The organisations have published new guidance which details steps bosses should be taking to keep female staff safe during and after pregnancy.  

The new guide says there are clear laws in place to protect new and expectant mothers. But warns that many bosses don’t know what they should be doing or are ignoring their legal responsibilities.  

A recent survey by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) found that two in five (41%) expectant mothers felt that there was a risk to their health or welfare at work during pregnancy.  

 
The guide highlights the risks new and expectant mothers face. These include:  

  • Irregular and long working hours: Working irregular hours such as night shifts can change circadian rhythms which regulate pregnancy hormones. And shift work and long working hours have been linked to miscarriages, and preterm births.   
  • Travelling: Pregnant women may have an increased need to use the toilet which can cause problems for bus, freight and train drivers. There can also be a higher risk of musculoskeletal problems such as back pain during pregnancy which can be made worse by driving or sitting in a train, car or plane for long periods.  
  • Stress: Constant stress in pregnancy can be damaging. Stress has been linked to poorer pregnancy health and possible developmental problems in babies.   
  • Heat: During pregnancy, the body has to work harder to cool down both the woman’s body and that of the unborn baby, so a pregnant worker is more likely to get heat exhaustion or heat stroke. And pregnant women are also more likely to become dehydrated.  

 
The guide suggests ways bosses can keep their pregnant staff safe including: 

  • making workstations like desks and checkouts more comfortable 
  • changing workload or hours to reduce stress  
  • varying starting and finishing times to make commuting easier  
  • agreeing an increase in breaks to visit the toilet and drink more fluids.  

 
The guide also sets out what employers need to do when a new mum returns to work, and how bosses can support their female staff with breastfeeding and expressing milk.  

 
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Pregnancy can be a stressful enough time for any woman without them having to worry about dangers at work as well.  

 
“Bosses need to do far more to ensure expectant or new mums are safe at work. Too many are ignoring their legal duty to remove risks from the workplace.  

 
“I’d advise every pregnant woman or new mum to join a union. Workplaces that recognise unions are safer and have better policies in place to protect all their staff.”  

Rosalind Bragg, Director of Maternity Action, said: “We know from the women that call our advice line that too many employers are failing to take the health and safety of pregnant and breastfeeding women in the workplace seriously. 

“As a result, we know that many women end up having to choose between risking their own health or that of their baby, going off sick, or leaving their job altogether. 

“Union reps have an important role in holding employers to account and ensuring that pregnant women are protected from workplace hazards.”  Editors note

- Pregnancy and health and safety is available at: www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/PregnancyBreastfeedingHS.pdf

– The EHRC research on pregnancy discrimination is available at:  www.equalityhumanrights.com/sites/default/files/mothers_report_-_bis-16-…

– The Trades Union Congress (TUC) exists to make the working world a better place for everyone. We bring together more than 5.5 million working people who make up our 49 member unions. We support unions to grow and thrive, and we stand up for everyone who works for a living.

Military and militias threaten Sudan sit-ins as civil disobedience escalates

A day after announcing agreement on key elements of a deal to hand power over to a civilian government led by the opposition Freedom and Change Forces, Sudan’s Transitional Military Council abruptly suspended negotiations and sent soldiers to clear barricades in the capital by force. According to international news agencies, military units used gunfire “extensively” on Wednesday 15 May as they attempted to clear protesters from the streets around the major sit-in outside the army’s General Command.

Wednesday’s attack by the army followed a major assault on the sit-in on Monday 13 May which Sudan Doctors’ Union representatives say was led by militias connected with the El-Bashir regime’s supporters in the People’s Congress Party and the National Intelligence and Security Service, Sudan’s feared and brual political police. According to information received by Middle East Solidarity from the Sudan Doctors’ Union, the attackers used live ammunition from guns, rifles and machine guns, tear gas and metal bars. At least 6 people were killed, including an army officer, and the ‘field hospitals’ in the sit-in were quickly overwhelmed by injured protesters.

The Army leadership eventually sent paratroopers to defend the sit-in on Monday. But the deployment of troops on Wednesday to clear barricades outside an agreed protest zone, along with previous attacks on sit-ins in Darfur, sends an ominous message about the continued power of Sudan’s numerous military and security forces and their capacity for violence against unarmed protesters.

Despite the threat, thousands of protesters were reported to have joined the sit-ins overnight, as opposition groups and the Sudanese Professionals Association rejected the military’s demand to remove barricades. Meanwhile, sit-ins, strikes and civil disobedience continue to multiply. Workers at the Bank of Khartoum were one group which answered the SPA’s call to escalate collective action, shutting down the bank in a strike which shut down 30 branches, according to reports on social media. Workers at ten other banks took part in demonstrations in solidarity with uprising and threatened to escalate to strike action. Sudanese activists told Middle East Solidarity strikes and sit ins were spreading to government ministries, such as the ministry of health.

What you can do:

  • Rush messages of support for the uprising’s demands for civilian rule, real democracy and social justice to info@sudaneseprofessionals.org
  • Pass a resolution in your trade union branch
  • Demand your government breaks all links with the Sudanese military, security forces and individuals and groups involved with attacks on protesters and human rights violations.

URGENT call for protest in solidarity with imprisoned academics: Solidarity with the People of Turkey

“Turkey is incarcerating its academics!” This is what Tuna Altinel (University of Lyon 1, France) wrote to the European solidarity networks last Wednesday (8th of May 2019), as Füsun Üstel stepped into the women’s prison in Eskişehir. A retired political science professor from Galatasaray University, Füsun Üstel is one of the 2237 signatories of the peace petition published in January 2016, that denounced the Turkish state’s violation of civilians’ basic rights in the Kurdish cities of Turkey. Since then, more than a third of the Academics for Peace have been prosecuted, on the grounds of “terrorist propaganda”. The outcome of the trials has invariably been a jail sentence. However, until recently, the indicted academics were sentenced to a maximum of two years in prison with a suspension provision, provided they refrained from committing further “crimes” over the following five years.

Füsun Üstel refused this provision because she did not want to be condemned to silence. That is the reason why she is now behind bars. Other academics are likely to face a similar treatment soon: nine of them followed her example and are awaiting their judgment on appeal. But there is more: in December 2018, Gencay Gürsoy was sentenced to 27-month imprisonment. Gürsoy is the former president of the Turkish Medical Association and a well-known activist of the fight for human rights in Turkey. As such, he was not judged for terrorist propaganda but for “insulting the Turkish people, the Republic of Turkey, the state institutions and the government”. Since then, several dozen academics have like him been sentenced to more than 24 months in jail, which means that the suspension provision is no longer an option. Furthermore, eleven members of the steering committee of the Union of Turkish Physicians have just been sentenced to 20 month-imprisonment for declaring, when Afrin was invaded in January 2018, that “war is a public health issue”

The last episode in the relentless expansion of arbitrary practices and crushing repression took place this Saturday, 11th of May, when Tuna Altinel, a mathematician who has been an associate professor at the Claude BernardUniversity of Lyon 1 and a French resident since 1996, was put in jail.  Tuna is Turkish and has a Turkish passport which was confiscated at Istanbul airport last month, when he travelled to Turkey to visit his family over the Easter break. During his trial as an academic for peace, Tuna had refused to disavow the peace petition. Indeed, when asked whether he agreed with its content, he had responded that he had arrived at the same assessments as those contained in the declaration during his stays in the region, and that he actually had had a lived experience in Nusaybin and Cizre of what the declaration describes as if he was the author.

The official grounds provided for his incarceration today are that he took part in an event organised in Lyon on the 21stof February 2019 by an association of solidarity with Kurdish people, which an MP in exile, from opposition party HDP and from the city of Cizre, was also attending. During that event, a documentary was shown with scenes of the massacres committed by the Turkish security forces in Cizre after the electoral defeat of the ruling party AKP on the 7th of June 2015, i.e. the very massacres that motivated the peace petition.

Of course, academics are not the only ones under attack in Turkey: journalists, lawyers, civil servants are also targeted. But, through Füsun Üstel’s and Tuna Altinel’s incarceration, the Turkish state is punishing the refusal to bend to its arbitrary pronouncements and to submit to its parody of justice. We declare our solidarity with Füsun Üstel and Tuna Altinel, and with all the signatories of the peace petition who currently live under threat, and we call on all Universities in the UK and the EU and their federations, as well as on the EU institutions, to intervene and demand the immediate release of our incarcerated colleagues, as well as the end of state repression in Turkey.

source

1 2 3