Socialist Worker

Trade unions and campaigns to take protests to Labour conference

Issue No. 2163

Campaigners are organising to mobilise the biggest possible turnout for a mass protest at the Labour Party conference in Brighton on Sunday 27 September.

There are many reasons to be there. The fight against the mounting attacks on workers—whether they involve redundancies, pay cuts, attacks on pensions or on trade union rights—is a key issue for many of those who plan to protest.

Journalists are one group that has borne the brunt of the growing recession, with hundreds of jobs being axed or coming under threat.

NUJ union members in London were meeting as Socialist Worker went to press to discuss how to build the protest among journalists.

One NUJ member said, “Job cuts in the media have been relentless. The national union is backing the demonstration but we have to organise at a grassroots level to build it. I hope we can host a public meeting in the run-up to the demo where we can highlight both the fight to save jobs in the media and the protest against New Labour.”

So far the PCS, NUT, NUJ and UCU national unions have backed the demo. The lecturers’ UCU union has agreed to donate £400 towards transport for each region.

Many other activists, including from the anti-war movement, the Campaign Against Climate Change, pensioners groups and others will also be protesting.

Andrew Burgin, a national officer of the Stop the War Coalition, told Socialist Worker, “We’ve been doing a lot of campaigning around the crisis in Afghanistan and in support of Joe Glenton, the British soldier who is refusing to fight in Afghanistan. The anti-war movement is being revitalised.

“I think that the Labour Party conference protest can be a part of rebuilding anti-war activity. We will be booking coaches in areas where there isn’t transport organised by the unions.”

The demonstration can be a focus for everyone who wants to fight the priorities of New Labour.

It can be part of building a mass movement in opposition to its neoliberal warmongering policies.

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Article information

Tue 4 Aug 2009, 19:27 BST
Issue No. 2163
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