Campaigners for Christopher Alder protested in Hull last Sunday as part of their continued campaign for justice.
Christopher, a black former paratrooper, died 14 years ago after being restrained by police.
Over 100 family campaigners and trade unionists gathered outside Queen’s Gardens police station. They then marched though the city centre to a memorial meeting organised by Hull trades council.
People shouted “Shame!” as Janet Alder, Christopher’s sister, listed the string of cover-ups she has encountered in her fight for justice.
Trade unions played a key role in the mobilisation. The RMT transport workers’ union organised a coach to the protest from London.
“We are moving forward,” Janet said at the meeting. “The support from the RMT is a breath of fresh air.”
The families of Ricky Bishop, Sean Rigg, Smiley Culture—all of whom died in custody—were represented.
Tragically they were joined by another family—that of Anthony Grainger, who was shot dead by police on 3 March (see www.socialistworker.co.uk//art.php?id=28027).
Speakers raised hopes that the family campaigns could pool their resources into a stronger force backed by the trade union movement.
“There are lots of small groups and big groups,” said Gail Hadfield, Anthony Grainger’s girlfriend. “But if we all come together we can’t go unnoticed.”
Unjum Mirza, political officer for RMT’s London transport region, was applauded when he called for greater links between the unions and the justice movement. “We want your campaigns in our workplaces,” he said.
Janet Alder spoke to Socialist Worker after the meeting. “It was fantastic,” she said. “People are getting more and more aware. Now we need a campaign network with the RMT, the TUC, other unions.”
Other families offered the Graingers advice on how to win justice for Anthony.
Gail told Socialist Worker, “I’m really happy I came—just to understand that we’re not alone.”