Over 200 women gathered in London last Saturday for the Women’s Assembly against Austerity.
Meetings and workshops looked at the disproportionate impact of Tory cuts on women.
Speakers included Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, chair of Black Activists Rising Against Cuts Zita Holbourne, trade unionists and activists.
Speakers who talked about fighting back got the best response though no new concrete plans came out of the day.
Paula Peters, from Disabled People Against Cuts said that the way to win was to protest.
“I am not looking to politicians to make it better,” she told Socialist Worker.
“We have to show we are a powerful movement.”
Jenny Sutton, a UCU union branch chair from north London, described how a cleaners’ campaign at her college won the London Living Wage. “If they can win so can we,” she said.
When Sarah Veale from the TUC said “we need a noisy angry march” on 18 October for TUC demonstration against austerity someone shouted, “We need a national strike”.
Other speakers said there were lesson to learn from past struggles.
NUT member Sara Tomlinson spoke about the massive pensions strike in November 2011.
“The unions stepped back too quickly,” she said. “We had the government on the ropes.”
The People’s Assembly recall conference on 15 March is open to all activists.
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