Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2353

Dated: 14 May 2013

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Tories' benefits cuts killed Stephanie Bottrill - Stop the bedroom tax now

Stephanie Bottrill, a pensioner in Solihull, was losing £20 a week because of the bedroom tax. 

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


New Tory measures aim to criminalise migrants

The government launched a new assault on immigrants in last week’s queen’s speech.

Asylum seeker speaks out - 'We have to fight back together'

Manjeet Kaur, an asylum seeker from Afghanistan, spoke about the government’s attack on migrants.

Trade union motion to defend migrants

The argument about scapegoating migrants needs to be taken up urgently.

PCS members at IT firm CSC vote for strike over pay

Around 300 workers at IT firm Computer Science Corporation (CSC) have voted overwhelming for strikes.

RAF staff declare war on bosses

Workers in the GMB and Unite unions at eight RAF air bases in England and Wales are being balloted for strikes over a puny pay rise.

Demonstration for trafficked woman

Supporters of Aminet Mary Adenugba, a trafficked woman from Nigeria, demonstrated outside her hearing in Manchester on Friday of last week.

Inquest starts into deportation death of Jimmy Mubenga

The inquest into the death of Jimmy Mubenga began on Monday of this week. 

Trade unionist bus driver Gerry Downing reinstated

Sacked Bus driver and Unite union member Gerry Downing has won his job back in a successful appeal.

Tories attack workplace rights and pensions

The queen’s speech outlined plans to make it easier for bosses to ignore discrimination in the workplace.

Cuts threaten basic legal rights

Lawyers aren’t known for striking, but a few weeks ago criminal defence barristers across the North West did just that. 

PCS must step up the action to beat the government

 Civil service workers in the PCS union’s public sector group began a series of walkouts on the day of the queen’s speech last week

We can defend our hospitals


Hamstead Hall strikers lead Birmingham teachers' march against Gove

Over 800 teachers, parents and campaigners crammed into the International Chamber of Commerce in Birmingham on Saturday of last week

Unions consult local government workers over ‘insulting’ pay offer

Local government workers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are being consulted on a 1 percent pay offer. It was made in line with chancellor George Osborne’s public sector pay restraint.

Firefighters set for national strike ballot over pensions emergency

The FBU union is expected to call a national strike ballot to defend firefighters’ pensions at its conference in Blackpool this week.

Lecturers reject below-inflation pay offer

Lecturers in the UCU union have rejected below inflation pay rises of 0.5 percent in further education and 0.8 percent in higher education.

Inquiry into 1987 murder of Daniel Morgan linked to phone hacking

The establishment has been forced to accept that the cover-up of the murder of Daniel Morgan is unsustainable.

Britain doubles 'non-lethal' aid to Syria

Two car bombs went off in the Turkish border town of Reyhanli, last week, killing at least 47 people and injuring many more. It intensified the fear of Syria’s civil war extending across the border. 

Prides plan to hit the streets

The first Pride festival of the year will take place in Birmingham next week. After right wing attacks on gay marriage the theme is going to be Equal Love.

Young people offered no hope as recession continues

People aged 18-24 are now more likely to be unemployed than they were before the recession, according to analysis by the TUC. 

Troops face longer tours in Afghanistan

Tours of duty for British troops in Afghanistan are set to be extended from six to nine months. The shift will affect 3,500 soldiers. 

Stop the racist EDL in Newcastle

Unite Against Facism is mobilising against a national demonstration by the English  Defence League in Newcastle on Saturday 25 May. 

Bin workers occupation rocks Brighton council

Over 300 refuse workers in Brighton called a strike ballot last Friday after a two-day unofficalwalkout. They had occupied their canteen at the Hollingdean Road depot from Wednesday to Friday, then began a work to rule.

Construction workers protest against blacklist


No to evictions in Brent

The Counihan-Sanchez family of Brent, north London, have called for a protest at their home when Brent council tries to evict them on Monday 27 May.

London transport workers vote for strikes

London Underground drivers | ISS cleaners | STM on London Overground | Mitie at TfL

Socialists win prizes at London Radical Bookfair

The first London Radical Bookfair took place in Conway Hall in London last Saturday. It was organised by the Alliance of Radical Booksellers, formed two years ago to bring together bookshops such as Housmans, Bookmarks and News from Nowhere, as well as radical publishers. 

Gatwick workers reject pay offer

PCS, Unite and Prospect union members at Gatwick Airport have voted overwhelmingly to reject bosses’ latest offer of new, lower start rates. 

Victory for Carpenters Estate campaigners

University College London and Newham council have abandoned plans to bulldoze the Carpenters Estate in Stratford, east London.

Campaigners camp against fracking

Over 100 people joined the second Camp Frack in Lancashire last weekend. 

Jerry Hicks building on votes

Jerry Hicks has been speaking at meetings around Britain to discuss how to build on his success in Unite’s general secretary election.

Workers enter sixth week of strike

The 13 striking kiln workers at Hanson Brick in Whittlesey, near Peterborough, have entered their sixth week of continuous strike action this week.

‘We’re not going to be victims,’ says anti-bedroom tax activists

More than 350 people from 74 organisations met in London last Saturday to coordinate resistance to the government’s attacks on benefits.

Solidarity can stop evictions

Albert Portillo from Barcelona spoke at the benefit justice summit about the movement for housing rights in Spain.

Protests to take on Tory benefit cuts

Benefits campaigners have called protests in several areas, including Wakefield and Sheffield, this week.

Cap threatens to force poor people out of their homes

Households will find their benefits capped at £500 a week from July in many councils, with four London boroughs already piloting the scheme. 

Tories in turmoil hit out at benefits and the poor

Senior Tories are lashing out at each other after they got a drubbing in this month’s local elections.

Anti-blacklist protester run down on demonstration

A protester against the blacklist is in hospital in Manchester with two broken legs.

Nigel Farage humiliated in Edinburgh

Ukip leader Nigel Farage got a rowdy reception outside a pub in Edinburgh yesterday afternoon, Thursday. He had invited the press to the Canons’ Gait on the Royal Mile to  hear him speak about the far right party’s prospects in Scotland.

Thousands join angry London march for the NHS

Some 7,000 health workers, trade unionists and activists marched through London today, Saturday, to defend the NHS. Health workers came from Bristol, Brighton and Newcastle to join the protest.


Workers defy Greek government’s threats to ‘conscript’ striking teachers

Thousands of high school teachers in Greece could face arrest if they strike during exams from Friday of this week.

New strike at Marikana follows shooting of union militant

Tensions between unions in South African mines have grown since last year’s massacre of striking miners, writes Rehad Desai

Voters protest against ruling parties in Pakistan poll, but fight continues

Muslim League leader Nawaz Sharif will become prime minister of Pakistan for a third time after elections last week. 

Bangladesh's workers get results

Protests have continued in Bangladesh over the factory collapse last month that killed over 1,100 workers. They have won concessions from the government.


We must not play into Ukip's hands

The queen’s speech last week made clear the government’s strategy. It is to move right and savage the working class in an attempt to recapture votes that have leeched to Ukip.

The ‘miracle’ that’s being restricted to the rich

The science behind IVF and “test tube” babies was a breakthrough­—but cuts now mean it is only available to a few, says John Parrington


Tories put NHS under the knife

Overstretched nurses running out of beds and ambulance crews who can’t get patients into A&E. That’s the reality of the health service today. But, writes Annette Mackin, things are about to get a whole lot worse

The Comintern: a beacon for world revolution

Seventy years ago this month the Communist International, known as the Comintern, was dissolved by Stalin. Simon Basketter looks at its achievements­­—and the lessons its holds for today


Star Trek into Darkness

JJ Abrams’ action-packed sequel Star Trek into Darkness takes the franchise back to the optimism of the original television series, says Dave Sewell

Ice Age Giants

The enormous mammals that thrived in the last ice age, which began 80,000 years ago, are entertainingly explored in this three-part documentary series. 

Django Unchained DVD

Quentin Tarantino’s violent revenge fantasy, now out on DVD, looks at slavery in the years leading up to the US Civil War. 

The Thatcher Years, My Eighties - David Sinclair

During the 1980s, as Margaret Thatcher attacked the working class, photographer David Sinclair travelled Britain taking pictures of people fighting back.       

What We Think

It's wrong to talk up the right

Do this month’s local elections show that working class people are becoming more right wing? There’s a growing consensus that says they did. One version of this saw the media push a “new” report from Joseph Rowntree. 

One law for the rich

The government likes to talk about the benefits of prison and the need for criminals to pay for their crimes. But it seems that some criminals need to repent more than others. 

Other Categories


‘Meet us 100 miles away or we’ll snatch your benefits’; Panicked government is lashing out in Dhaka; Ukip racists take advantage of misery

Can capitalism run without sweatshops?

Revulsion at the way multinationals use cheap labour reached a new height in the wake of the factory collapse in Bangladesh last month.

Things they say

This week's news in their own words

You don’t have to be a genius to boycott Israel, but it helps

The smart way to boycott Israel, less smart defence spending and made up figures from IDS

Royal Mail privatisation will drag down standards

Dave Sewell looks at the Tory government’s plan to privatise Royal Mail and explains why it is a money-making gimmick that offers no benefits

Postal workers need to take action to stop selloff

The postal service will be ruined if the sale goes ahead. We’ll see the end of universal service. Prices will go up, but it’s also the quality of service.

TNT delivers twice weakly

TNT is trialling a delivery service in west London. It delivers twice a week instead of once a day. 

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