The anger and militancy on the streets of Manchester last Sunday showed once again just how much people want to stand up to the Tories. It gave people a sense of strength to see so many others who felt the same way they do.
The Tories want to demonise workers and the poor. They want us to blame each other for the crisis and austerity. But the march showed that our side is not cowed.
Women and men, black and white marched together—this was a working class demonstration of solidarity and resistance. People made placards and banners, they dressed in hospitals scrubs and carried a mock coffin or wore T-shirts declaring they’d never kissed a Tory.
And it was big. At over 50,000, the sheer size of the march can build confidence for future struggles.
Only this week post office workers and thousands of teachers have been on strike. The FBU firefighters’ union has called a national demonstration on 16 October—the day before the next round of teachers’ strikes.
We need more action, in more unions. We need to turn the heat up on the government. Many union leaders talked a good fight at Sunday’s rally. But speeches are not enough.
Workers at the sharp end of the Tory attacks need the union leaders to lead a fight that can offer the real chance of winning.