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3 February 2021

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South Yorks TUSC ready for electoral fight

photo Iain Dalton

photo Iain Dalton   (Click to enlarge)

Chris Bingham, Rotherham Socialist Party

On 27 January South Yorkshire Socialist Party members attended a public meeting of South Yorkshire Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) - an anti-cuts and socialist electoral alliance involving the RMT transport union, the Socialist Party and others.

The online meeting was attended by around 63 people, who heard Dave Nellist (TUSC Chair), Gaz Jackson (RMT national executive member), Chris Williamson (ex-Labour MP, now representing the Resist movement, affiliated to TUSC), and the thoughts and contributions of trade unionists, socialists and community activists.

Gaz Jackson, a guard on Trans-Pennine trains, opened the discussion, commenting that "it is an honour to have an association with an organisation that wants to fight cuts". He went on to say that the RMT is prepared and willing to support TUSC candidates, and he encouraged appeals for financial support from the union, indicating that it would be forthcoming if approved at the national executive level.

Reporting on the specific problems facing RMT members, he warned of a "tsunami" of situations where bosses plan to force workers to pay for the mess made by Covid with their jobs, including the recent announcement about ferry routes from Hull being scrapped.

Chris Williamson commented that if the Labour left had strongly fought the smears and backstabbing against Corbyn and other left MPs (such as himself), then in the winter of 2019 we could have had a Corbyn premiership and a left Labour government.

He went on the suggest that with these actions and others, such as the undermining of the grassroots membership at the national conference, Labour had lost its chance to change itself into a party of its membership, that is, of the working class. TUSC could act as a "lifeboat", he said, for all the disgruntled, and now politically homeless, ex-Labour Party members.

Dave Nellist explained that in the coming period the government would be seeking to recoup its Covid spending, and that cuts would inevitably materialise. Opposing these planned cuts will be the backbone of our May election campaigns.

Dave proposed that the unions should call a general conference to discuss working-class political representation, including socialists from both inside and outside the Labour Party.

It was reported that the TUSC steering committee has agreed to promote policies from Corbyn's 2019 election manifesto that could be immediately implemented by councils if they want to (see tusc.org.uk). No councillor from any branch of the establishment, who is committed to cuts, should go unopposed in May's local elections.

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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 3 February 2021:


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

Launching a political alternative to cuts, poverty and job losses

Why I am attending the TUSC local elections online conference

South Yorks TUSC ready for electoral fight


What we think

Workers' rights and safety: Trade union mobilisation could force more Tory U-turns


News

Socialist Students open letter to Rent Strike network

Children in care: Privatisation is not working

Multimillion-pound rental firm demands thousands from homeless asylum seeker

Covid outbreak at Kent asylum detention centre: Napier is not fit for purpose

New anti-protest law: State forces want more power to crush the protests that are coming


Workplace news

Usdaw conference stripped of democracy by leadership

Usdaw Broad Left rally brings together those campaigning for a fighting union

Strong union lead needed to stop DVLA Covid spread

HMRC: We demand a pay rise without cuts to terms and conditions

Workers fight British Gas 'fire-and-rehire' plans

Vote Steve Hedley for RMT general secretary

The NEU's 'big announcement' - lessons need to be learned

Yorkshire aerospace workers strike against pay disparity

Workplace news in brief


The Communist Manifesto

The Communist Manifesto - A guide to understanding society, and how to change it


Rolls-Royce

1971: Rolls-Royce crisis - when the Tories nationalised in order to secure the interests of British capitalism


Readers' opinion

GameStop: Billionaires hurt at their own game

The Socialist Inbox


International news

Covid 'vaccine wars' underline failure of capitalist nation states to deal with the global pandemic


Campaigns news

New members meeting in the South West - preparing for the battles to come

Why I rejoined the Socialist Party

Help us raise the funds to fuel the working-class fightback

Save our square: we need social housing and public services

Stop Labour council's eviction of Stratford Circus arts centre


 

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Article dated 3 February 2021

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