Socialist Worker

News


In any language Blunkett needs to go


LISTENING TO David Blunkett advocating that Asian families should speak English at home infuriated and disgusted me. As a nursery teacher in a multi-ethnic school I have responsibility for coordinating support for children when English is their additional language.

When can they come home?


A High Court judge ruled last week that home secretary David Blunkett's decision to deport the Ahmadi family was "unlawful". Farid and Feriba Ahmadi and their two young children fled from the horror of Afghanistan. Then they faced a police raid on the mosque where they were seeking sanctuary.

Cut off Reality bosses' profits


I AM one of the 6,000 call centre workers employed by Reality who were balloted for strike action over a threat to cut our jobs. I voted yes to strike. Reality is a multi-million pound catalogue company owned by Great Universal Stores.

Left must shape 'no' campaign on Europe


IRELAND IS the only country in Europe that is to vote on the Nice treaty agreed by European Union leaders at their summit at the end of 2000. Though people here have already rejected the treaty in a vote once, the government is coming back with it again.

You should be a part of this


THE "LEADERS" of the world meet this week in Johannesburg. They will put profits before people and try to convince us there is no other way to run the world than the way it is done now. The activists, campaigners, arguers, debaters, discussers and awkward people of the European anti-capitalist movement will come together in Florence in November.

Cutbacks let down the class


PARENTS AND teachers in Hackney have argued for years for a new comprehensive school in Hackney. Instead we were greeted this week with the news in our local paper that 150 local school children have no secondary school places.

Letters


We're more angry than ever before THE ANTI-war mood in Glasgow and across Scotland is growing daily and not just among the usual suspects. For years the Muslim community has been considered quiet and respectable, playing little or no role in active politics.

Labour putting babies at risk


THE INHUMANITY of New Labour's treatment of asylum seekers seems to have no limits. The principle of the United Nations and European Union conventions on the rights of the child and the rights of families is that, in any case affecting children, it is the interests of the child that must be the guide.

Letters


Chilled to the bone by Israel's murder I HAVE just returned from Gaza City where I was part of a small delegation of trade unionists from Britain. We were there to show solidarity with the Palestinians and their struggle. It was the final visit of a week that had taken us all over the West Bank. I was shocked by what I saw.

Stop the racists hunting black men


SAVAGE RACIST attacks on three black men within 48 hours could easily have been murders. That has been the toll recently in Eltham, south east London, where Stephen Lawrence was murdered nine years ago.

War on drugs is total failure


HOME SECRETARY David Blunkett's new policy on drugs announced last week shows how New Labour cannot adopt a rational approach to the issue. His "drugs tsar", Keith Hellawell, resigned in protest at Blunkett putting cannabis in the least dangerous category of illegal drugs, class C. The overwhelming evidence that cannabis is far less dangerous than alcohol or tobacco and that most people support a change in the law has forced Blunkett to retreat.

Letters


I didn't back Ken's plan I was a candidate in the election for the Greater London Assembly just over two years ago. Like many others, I voted for Ken Livingstone for mayor as a vote against New Labour's betrayals.

Welfare denied to the poorest


I WORK as a welfare rights adviser in Scarborough. In recent months I have seen an increase in the amount of people being found fit for work after undergoing the government's assessments. Their benefit is immediately stopped and they are forced to be available for work.

Justice protest hits the house


THERE WAS a brilliant atmosphere on the mass lobby of parliament last week called by the Trade Justice Movement. The organisers estimate there were around 10,000 people there. They were protesting at the way multinationals and powerful governments enforce trade rules that benefit themselves and mean misery for the poor.

Palace servants in royal squalor


I WAS one of the firefighters who attended the recent fire at Buckingham Palace during the jubilee. This fire was a small affair and quickly extinguished.

Terror under Israeli troops


HERE IN Palestine the only things that are moving freely are tanks. Even ambulances can be held up at Israeli army checkpoints for hours while the patients they carry suffer in the sun. I am writing this in Nablus, a city which has been under curfew for four days now.

Warm days in Seville in June


THE 500,000-strong demonstration against a Europe of capital and war in Barcelona in March was a milestone in the anti-capitalist movement that has swept the world since Seattle in 1999. It showed that the movement had not declined after 11 September, but was stronger than ever.

Letters


Repeating the old mistakes LAST WEEK'S report by MPs into drug abuse recommended the reclassification of ecstasy and cannabis. This is a step in the right direction, although the 500,000 people who use ecstasy would still be seen as criminals.

Answers absent to playing truant


I AM disgusted at the jailing of Patricia Amos over her teenage daughters playing truant, and at the way education secretary Estelle Morris gloated over the case. What does the government think this will achieve? It is like something from Victorian times.

A day of unity and solidarity


I AM a sixth form school student, and I took the day off school to attend the May Day protests in London. It paid off, as thousands of anti-capitalists, trade unionists and anti-war campaigners packed into central London to voice their anger at New Labour's disgusting neo-liberal policies at home and abroad.

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.