Monday, 8 October 2012

Monday, 24 September 2012

TUSC Campaigning Locally


Across the country local authorities are facing significant cuts to their funding. In Brighton and Hove the first total of £35m will be slashed from the budget, with more to come. The government expects the council to 'find savings' - code for reducing and even closing local services – by attacking workers conditions, cutting jobs and exploring routes to privatisation. Across the country councils are refusing to wage a fightback, with only a handful of Labour councilors following their conscience and refusing to vote for cuts.

In Brighton the Greens won the election calling for no cuts, but completely failed to put forward (let alone carry out) a strategy to achieve that aim.

For TUSC this election is a campaign on a series of local issues, all linked to the need to wage a serious fightback against the government. Every campaign that is being fought for in Brighton and Hove must be linked to a campaign for a budget that opposes the government's cuts, that calls for the funding to be returned to our city, and appeals to other councils to do the same. We reject the divisive choices being asked of us, to prioritise one job or service above another. There is more than enough wealth within society to prevent any cuts taking place, but pointing that out is not enough, as trade unionists, campaigners, young people and others, we need to build a serious challenge to the cuts.

TUSC is a national coalition fighting to establish a real party of workers, the poor, of young people and so on. We feel let down by all the main political parties and believe it is about time a real alternative is built.

No to Council Tax Benefit Cuts

No return to Poll-Tax poverty! We call on Brighton and Hove Council to reject the demand from the Con-Dem government to cut council tax benefit. By proposing to cut the benefit paid to working-age people in Brighton, the council are passing the £2.5 million bill for tax cuts by a government of millionaires to the poorest and most vulnerable citizens of Brighton. We believe that this is a betrayal of the mandate for change and resistance to austerity that the Council were given in the 2011 elections.

The council’s proposals can only increase poverty poverty amongst the low-paid and wage-less citizens of Brighton, and continue attacks on our rights, such as the recent jailing of an 80 year old pensioner for a ten year old bill. Instead, our councillors should lead an active campaign by community groups, trade unions, student organisations and all those affected by the cuts in spending to demand that government return the £2.5 million cut to the benefit budget and the £35 million total stolen from our city by Cameron, Clegg and Osborne.


No Cuts to Disability Accommodation

The proposal to close some group homes for adults with learning disabilities must be rejected. These people are some of the most vulnerable living in our city and often have no voice of their own. They deserve the same rights as anyone else, and must be allowed to remain in their own home. to remove them from their own home for financial reasons is morally wrong and any move could have a detrimental effect on their health and well-being.


No Academy at Whitehawk Primary School

Th government plans to convert most schools into academies is an attack on democratically accountable local education, and a foot in the door towards privatisation. Academies are an attack on staff as well. A successful campaign against Varndean school becoming an academy was waged last year which saw an important alliance between staff and parents forged. While this issue once again highlights the need to campaign for a party to actually oppose academies (Labour introduced them while in government), local battles can be won against the academy agenda.

No to Outsourcing of University of Sussex services

This Summer the University of Sussex announced plans to “outsource” 235 jobs, in effect privatising large swathes of support staff from catering and facilities, and the services they provide, including health and safety, and security. This has been met so far by a furious reaction from staff and students on campus, with meetings and demonstrations of hundreds having taken place in the short time period since the plans were announced.

Universities often try to justify privatisation by arguing it reduces “waste” spending and improves efficiency. In reality however it is a clear move to cut university spending on what management may see as “waste”, but are actually essential services for staff and students

This is part of a trend that has been seen across the public sector as a whole over the last decade, and is being rapidly accelerated by the Con-Dems as part of their drive for austerity.  The private sector is salivating at the prospects of the selling off of hundreds of services, in local government, the NHS and education. The Olympic G4S scandal is just one in a long line of private sector failures due to cost-cutting and maximising profits.

The privatisation at Sussex is part of this agenda and must be resisted by workers and students as part of a united democratic struggle, carrying the message – education for public need, not private greed!

Trade Unions and October 20th

We encourage you to join the October 20th TUC demonstration in London, and contact brightontradescouncil@gmail.com for information on transport. This demonstration must be a springboard to a greater fight-back against the cuts including co-ordinating strike action for the same day for maximum impact, and it must become a campaign for a general strike in Britain against all the cuts. We also encourage you to join a trade union and get active in your workplace.

Why We Are Standing


The Con Dem government has subjected us to attacks on pensions, services, jobs, and welfare. However there is no alternative available to working and poor people; the Labour Party supports the cuts and offers no way to challenge them. The Green Party is administering cuts in Brighton, again with no strategy to fight back.

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is an electoral alternative supported by leading figures in the rail, teaching, civil service, prison officers and fire-fighters trade unions, along with many socialist parties and groups.

The U.K. is a polarised nation. The richest 1,000 individuals saw their personal wealth grow by 30% in 2009/10 alone; in 2012 their collected wealth came to £414billion, a sum which could wipe out the deficit nearly four times over! Unemployment, according to official sources, now exceeds 2.6 million. In Brighton & Hove there are 10,000 living in child poverty with health and educational implications.

Cuts are not necessary; the money is there in society not only to stop the cuts but to improve public services through investment. Tax avoidance and evasion by the rich costs the economy £120 billion a year.

Local councils and MPs need to fight-back against these cuts. They must use their powers to encourage campaigns against every outsourcing, against every academy and against every cut. The government mustn't be allowed to get away with anything without being challenged by the people whose lives they are affecting. As your TUSC councillor I will do everything I can to build a movement and campaign against every attack to the community and individuals, as well as do my utmost to represent you and campaign on your behalf.

Local councils led by councillors claiming to be anti-cuts must build a campaign to win back the funding that is currently being robbed from us. Liverpool Council in the mid 1980’s won £60 million from the Thatcher administration through a mass campaign, enabling mass house building and job creation. As a TUSC councillor I would fight every cut and use the role as a platform to build a mass campaign, not just talking about fighting back, but encouraging the community to fight back.

In Britain there is a desperate need for a party that stands up for ordinary working and poor people – we need party worth voting for, not just the lesser of two evils! TUSC is a big step towards such a party – if you agree, join us in building the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition!

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition fights for a genuine party of the working-class and poor. All of the mainstream parties are wedded to cuts, privatisation, protecting big business and the banks over the interests of everyone else. TUSC stood candidates in every Brighton and Hove election since 2010 and aims to build a new mass workers party. For more information please contact: tuscbrighton@gmail.com

For a full list of our policies and campaigning demands please visit: www.tusc.org.uk

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition candidate chosen for East Brighton by-election




The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is an electoral alternative supported by leading figures in the rail, teaching, civil service, prison officers and fire-fighters trade unions, along with many socialist parties and groups.

Jon Redford, South East Regional Secretary of the Socialist Party, will be standing in the East Brighton by-election. Jon was one of the principal organisers of the local demonstrations against the government's implementation of student fees in 2010.

I am standing on a platform of opposing ALL cuts. The Con Dem government has subjected us to attacks on pensions, services, jobs, and welfare. However there is no alternative available to working and poor people; the Labour Party supports the cuts and offers no way to challenge them. The Green Party is administering cuts in Brighton, again with no strategy to fight back.

Cuts are not necessary; the money is there in society not only to stop the cuts but to improve public services through investment. Tax avoidance and evasion by the rich costs the economy £120 billion a year.

The government must not be allowed to get away with anything without being challenged by the people whose lives they are affecting. As a TUSC councillor I will do everything I can to build a movement and campaign against every attack to the community and individuals.”

Contact:
jon_redford@hotmail.co.uk
07894716095
Facebook: Vote Jon Redford - T.U.S.C Against the Cuts - East Brighton 18th October
Local website: www.brightontusc.blogspot.co.uk
National Website: www.tusc.org.uk

Sunday, 23 September 2012

EAST BRIGHTON BY-ELECTION



Following the resignation of Labour Councillor Craig Turton, a by-election has been called in the East Brighton ward of Brighton and Hove City Council.  The election will take place on Thursday 18 October.

At a meeting last week, Brighton TUSC members unanimously decided to contest the vacant seat and to nominate Jon Redford as our candidate.

The Election Campaign

We will be canvassing regularly from next Tuesday. All offers of help welcome!

The first canvas will be on Tuesday 25th September. We will be meeting at 6.00 pm outside the main entrance to the Sussex County Hospital on Eastern Road (by the bus stops).

We hope to canvas two nights a week (normally on Tuesday and Thursday) and on Sunday afternoons. Leaflets are already being produced.

Regular weekly campaign meetings will be held after the Tuesday canvas. 

More information will be posted asap. 


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Greece: the elections of 17th June - Reform, Resistance & Revolution


An open public meeting following the Greek elections of 17 June 2012,  where Syriza, a socialist / left of social democrat / radical left coalition narrowly failed to become the largest party in Greece at the elections, having campaigned on a radical left anti-austerity programme. 

Now there is in power a pro-austerity coalition of the old neoliberal parties: New Democracy (conservatives), PASOK (the `New Labour type `ex-socialist' party, supporting the cuts) and Democratic Left (which isn't very left!)

This is a crucial time in the history and development of democratic socialism / Marxism in Europe, with intense anger, suffering, politicisation, class consciousness and the development of organs of class resistance.

Main speaker: Dimitris Tzanakopoulos (Syriza)

Dimitris is an experienced young comrade, who for some years was on the leadership of Synaspsismos, the main constituent of Syriza. He was Secretary of the Central Council of the Youth of Synsaspismos from 2005 to 2009 and a member of the Central Committee during the same years.

Second speaker: Sofia Hilari (Antarsya)

Sofia is a long-time activist in Antarsya

Chair: Dave Hill who works with OKDE-Spartakos and Antarsya Greek comrades in Greece, alongside Syriza comrades, and has just come back from the Greek elections in Athens, having taken part in political meetings and demonstrations/ strikes over the last 2 years in Greece. Dave will present the Antarsya perspective –critical support for Syriza- as part of the open debate.



Sunday, 6 May 2012

Hi, here are the TUSC results from the TUSC website at www.tusc.org.uk

outside London these are by far better than TUSC votes in previous years

3 candidates polled over 40% of the votes in their ward/ electoral area (two were elected as councillor)

13 TUSC candidates received more than 10% of the votes in their ward

a total of 48 TUSC candidates received more than 5% of the votes in their ward

50 more (making a total of 98) candidates received more than 3% of the votes

the other 34 TUSC candidates received between 1% and 3%

TUSC stood around 130 candidates

I haven't time to do the average vote for the c.130 TUSC candidates, but as an estimate it appears to be in excess of 6%. Is this the best performance in local elections for a long time for a far left/ socialist party?

(I've done this hastily, may be minor inaccuracies)

The full list of TUSC results is iat www.tusc.org.uk


Dave