Socialist Worker

Anti-fascists organise to block Nick Griffin in Barking

by Mark Thomas
Issue No. 2187

Anti-fascist campaigners in Barking, east London, are gearing up for a day of action against the BNP this Saturday.

The BNP are standing leader Nick Griffin for parliament in Barking.

Parliamentary boundaries have been redrawn since the last election. This has increased the number of BNP councillors in the Barking constituency from five to 11.

Unite Against Fascism (UAF) held a highly successful day of leafleting in January. It boosted local people’s confidence to challenge the BNP.

UAF received phone calls and emails almost immediately from people who had received Don’t Vote Nazi leaflets through the door.

Melody Scowen emailed Barking and Dagenham UAF after her mum received a leaflet.

She wrote, “I’m so glad others share my outrage. I have been on the UAF website and downloaded a membership form, so shall be among your ranks soon.

“I was hoping you could send me some materials to display in my shop and to take to some of the local network groups I attend.”

Caroline, a local campaigner, said, “I was astounded by the number of people who turned up to campaign on our last day of action.

“Just walking around the next day, I could see it has given people more confidence to say they are against the BNP. It’s created a bigger sense of urgency.”

This excellent start to the campaign now needs to be built on to ensure the anti-Nazi majority in Barking is mobilised to stop the BNP.

The Nazis have grown in Barking by feeding off the scapegoating of immigrants and Muslims whipped up by politicians and the press.

The BNP has benefited from disillusionment with Labour’s record in office over the last 12 years.

It taps into peoples’ worries about jobs, housing and services.

But it blames immigrants or Muslims, rather than New Labour’s promotion of the interests of big business.

Meet 1pm, Saturday 6 February, outside Barking tube station. A further day of action is planned for 21 February

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Article information

Tue 2 Feb 2010, 19:19 GMT
Issue No. 2187
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