Socialist Worker

Westminster


‘All that politicians agree on is that neo-liberalism is the solution in Northern Ireland’

08 October 2005
Northern Ireland spends about £22 billion each year on its public services. It raises £14 billion in taxes, with another £8 billion coming from the British government. Under direct rule from Westminster, all of this money is allocated and spent from London.

North Westminster school

02 July 2005
Furious members of the NUT teaching union at North Westminster School, west London, voted for strike action last week and won an immediate withdrawal of proposals to relocate them.

University of Westminster student demonstration

14 May 2005
Students at the University of Westminster in London demonstrated on Wednesday of last week against the university management’s plans to change the academic timetable.

Respect’s campaign outside schools reaches those who usually get ignored

05 May 2005
Newham Respect has tried to connect with the many groups that the Westminster political classes don’t reach.

Trade justice vigil — a wake up call for the politicians

23 April 2005
Over 25,000 people joined the all night vigil for trade justice that began at Westminster Abbey, London, on Friday of last week.

Dame Porter gets away with corruption

01 May 2004
A SCROUNGER and a criminal sneaks into another country to escape justice. Doesn't that sound like the sort of case the anti-refugee press love to splash on the front page? Except it is the Tory Dame Shirley Porter, heiress to the Tesco empire. Porter was the leader of the Tories' flagship Westminster council in the 1980s. Porter, along with nine other councillors, was found guilty of selling off council houses in marginal wards to potential Tory voters. The scheme cost £42 million. She was supposed to pay every penny of that back.

'I will not be silenced'

01 November 2003
"IT TOOK them all of 36 seconds to tell me I was expelled. That's one second for every year I've been a member of the Labour Party. It was a bitter blow, to be expelled by this anti-Labour clique. The Labour leaders say they want freedom of speech in Baghdad, but they don't want freedom of speech in Westminster. They want a puppet parliament just like the one Saddam Hussein used to have.

Pensioners

20 September 2003
ON WEDNESDAY of last week some 1,000 pensioners descended on Westminster to ask for a £10 increase to the state pension and the restoration of the link with earnings. The demonstration came following strikes to defend pensions in Europe. There was a rally organised by the NPC pensioners' convention and a lobby of MPs.

Where you can't say 'Stephen Lawrence'

07 June 2003
THE MILD-mannered former head of the Commission for Racial Equality, Lord Ouseley, let rip at the government at a race relations conference last month. He recalled that a government minister had told him the previous week, "Do you know most MPs never meet black people outside Westminster?"

Recall a live tradition

08 March 2003
PARLIAMENT HAS refused to reflect the will of the majority on the question of war on Iraq. So the People's Assembly will convene in Westminster Central Hall, next to the House of Commons.

'We have been betrayed'

14 September 2002
WESTMINSTER Unison members are very angry and hurt by the decision by our union, both regionally and nationally, to instruct us to return to work. Union leaders called the return to work after a seven-week strike by nearly 300 Unison members against Westminster Tory council's plans for wholesale privatisation of services. This decision came after the council initiated legal action against the strike, using the anti trade union laws. But if the national and regional union had followed the strategy of the local branch, this legal action would not have happened.

Bosses threaten strike with anti-union laws

07 September 2002
TORY-CONTROLLED Westminster council has thrown down a major challenge to the Unison public sector workers' union. It was trying to use anti-union laws, introduced by Margaret Thatcher's Tory governments but kept by New Labour, to stop our strike action against privatisation.

Council workers

24 August 2002
WESTMINSTER council workers are continuing their fight against plans by their Tory council to privatise up to 80 percent of council services. National union officials of their Unison union were due to meet this week to discuss possible escalation of the action. This is a crucial strike which has bosses worried.

Back this strike against council's privatising plans

17 August 2002
MORE WORKERS are joining the ongoing strike against privatisation at Westminster council in central London. Around 250 workers are now striking against the council's privatisation plans. The Tory-run council plans to privatise up to 80 percent of services. But the workforce is making a stand.

More sections join walkout

10 August 2002
"WE'RE FIGHTING to save our jobs, save our pensions and to not be privatised." That is how Nicky, a striker and Unison union member at Tory-controlled Westminster council, central London, summed up the battle to stop the wholesale privatisation of services. Nicky, along with 76 other members of the parking department at the council, has been out on strike for three weeks.

All out against privatisation in Westminster

27 July 2002
WESTMINSTER council workers began an all-out strike on Monday against a major privatisation plan by their Tory council. The strike in the London council began with 77 workers in the Parking and Highways Licensing Departments striking and staging lively pickets. At least three people joined the Unison union on the picket lines in order to take part in the strike.

Councils

20 July 2002
UNISON MEMBERS working for London's Westminster council are set to start strikes next week over privatisation, attacks on their pensions and working conditions. The action is due to start with 77 workers in the parking and highways licensing departments coming out.

Unison must back action by workers

06 July 2002
AROUND 800 council workers are gearing up for a major battle against privatisation. They will be standing up against plans by Tory-controlled Westminster council to privatise the bulk of council services. If the council gets away with its plan every council will be encouraged to press ahead with similar privatisation plans.

Trading in catastrophe

29 June 2002
THE TRADE Justice Movement brought thousands of people to Westminster to lobby their MPs on Wednesday of last week. They demanded a fair deal for the Third World. International development secretary Clare Short was quick to claim that the demonstrators were supporting the rich countries' campaign for free trade:

Scandal forces McLeish out

17 November 2001
Speculation was growing this week over who would be the next first minister of Scotland after the resignation of Henry McLeish. His downfall began in April when it emerged that McLeish had claimed full expenses from the taxpayer on his constituency office as a Westminster MP. At the same time he had been subletting it to private firms.

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