Socialist Worker

RMT and counter demo turn up the heat on EDL in Walthamstow

Issue No. 2318

Rail workers at King’s Cross station are threatening to disrupt attempts to ferry supporters of the English Defence League (EDL) to Walthamstow for a racist march today, Saturday.

The police want the EDL thugs to assemble in King’s Cross then get on specially chartered trains to travel to Walthamstow in east London.

But local people do not want the EDL in Walthamstow. They are gathering in large numbers tomorrow to protest against the EDL and to support attempts to stop the racist march.

Now the rail workers’ RMT union has said that in its view the EDL presents a “serious and imminent risk” to staff and passengers, and that its members are justified in refusing to work under these conditions.

RMT London political officer Unjum Mirza spoke to Socialist Worker earlier this week about the bitterness towards the EDL among King’s Cross railworkers.

He said, “The EDL are a bunch of racist thugs with fascists in their ranks. Our members don’t want to be part of helping them get to Waltham Forest to spread their message of hate.”

Rail workers in the RMT played an important role in Tower Hamlets last year when they helped disrupt police plans to assemble the EDL in Liverpool Street station.

A mass counter demo organised by Unite Against Fascism (UAF) and United East End stopped the EDL from marching through Tower Hamlets that day.

Now the EDL wants to march in nearby Waltham Forest. But they will face mass opposition from both the RMT and today’s counter demonstration organised by UAF and We Are Waltham Forest.

» Walthamstow gets ready to protest against EDL

» Unite and kick out the racist EDL

Stop the EDL in Waltham Forest: assemble 11am, Saturday 1 September, at the Arcade site next to Hoe Street, at the top end of Walthamstow High Street – Facebook event

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Sat 1 Sep 2012, 08:54 BST
Issue No. 2318
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