Socialist Worker

Privatisation


Now you can hit back at Tory Blair

03 March 2001
The Socialist Alliance launched its general election campaign this week. People across Britain now have the chance to say a resounding no to Tony Blair's pro-market, pro-privatisation policies, and to vote for a socialist alternative.

Rob Dawber

03 March 2001
Trade unionists and socialists in Sheffield will be sad to learn of the death of Rob Dawber. Rob was an active socialist and trade unionist since the mid-1970s. Rob was local RMT branch secretary at the time of rail privatisation. He and thousands of track workers were made redundant. Rob turned his hand to film writing and wrote a prophetic script about the effects of privatisation on rail safety.

Fight the sell-off of our services

24 February 2001
A swathe of privatisation proposals across the West Midlands have united anti-privatisation campaigners in a determined battle. Dudley Group of Hospitals is at the centre of the plans. Health workers are now on strike to fight the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) scheme that means axing staff, privatising jobs and slashing beds.

Meeting sends out clear signal

24 February 2001
A meeting called by the Fire Brigades Union in north London to oppose privatisation and support tube workers showed the potential for solidarity with the fight to stop the tube sell-off. Some 120 people came to the meeting in Islington on Thursday of last week. There were groups of firefighters, post office workers, tube drivers and station staff, teachers, council workers and others.

London Tube privatisation: Action needed

24 February 2001
The Government was in a deepening hole over its plans for privatising London's tube network at the beginning of this week-and more strikes could be on the way. Talks between deputy prime min ister John Prescott and London mayor Ken Livingstone's transport supremo Bob Kiley restarted on Monday. They had collapsed last week after Prescott went back on an earlier pledge to overhaul his PPP privatisation scheme.

Letters

17 February 2001
We fund them, they whack us I am fed up with our union giving the Labour Party hundreds of thousands of pounds while in government that party attacks us. I am a postal worker in the Communication Workers Union (CWU). New Labour is pushing "joint ventures" and privatisation which are a huge threat to our jobs and conditions.

Don't throw away this chance to win

17 February 2001
Last week's strike on London Underground struck a powerful blow to New Labour's privatisation scheme. But there is now a danger that a version of John Prescott's plan to hand the tube to private contractors could still go ahead after union leaders called off strikes planned for this week and next.

Why Refugees are not our enemies

10 February 2001
There were many important issues that New Labour could have homed in on this week. They included job losses, privatisation, low pay and the state of public services.

March to stop PFI

10 February 2001
"We urge our supporters to be on the streets of Birmingham on 3 March. There is strength in numbers and we are determined to get our message against privatisation across to the government."

Fighting privatisation strikes a popular mood

10 February 2001
London Underground management was forced to admit that Monday's strike paralysed the tube.

Fight is on for council housing

03 February 2001
We had a marvellous lobby of parliament in defence of council housing on Wednesday of last week. Some 22 city tenants federations, over 45 individual tenants associations, and 85 trade union branches and trades councils united with anti-privatisation campaigns.

Tube strike dates set

03 February 2001
Tube workers in London were set to strike on Monday after a magnificent vote for action to stop privatisation wrecking health and safety. Tube bosses were threatening to go to the courts to try and undermine the action as Socialist Worker went to press.

Councils

27 January 2001
Hackney Council Workers in Hackney, east London, will strike next Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in a crucial dispute over the ruling group's plans for cuts and privatisation. The Labour-Tory coalition "structural adjustment plans" mean cutting £50 million over the next three years. Hundreds of jobs will go and services will be handed over to private firms.

Build unity on the tube

20 January 2001
The public rally against tube privatisation earlier this month had speakers from the ASLEF, RMT and TSSA rail unions. ASLEF, which represents train drivers, and the RMT, the general rail trade union, are balloting their members together and plan joint action at the beginning of next month.

Councils

20 January 2001
Hackney council workers in east London will end their next round of strikes with a rally whose line-up includes Tony Benn MP, Guardian journalist Gary Younge, Mark Serwotka, recently elected PCS general secretary and Jeremy Hardy. Strikes are planned for three days, 29-31 January, against the council's cuts and privatisation plans.

Tower Hamlets

20 January 2001
Governors at George Green secondary school in east London's Tower Hamlets voted on Monday to reject being part of the New Labour council's plan to introduce a borough-wide PFI privatisation scheme. The vote is a boost to the fight to sink the scheme. The council wants 47 schools in the borough to be part of the PFI scheme involving a deal with giant firm Babcock and Brown. A lobby against the sell-off was planned outside the borough-wide governors' meeting on Thursday.

Councils

13 January 2001
Hackney council workers in east London are to strike for three days from 29 to 31 January. Urgent action is needed. The leaders of the Labour-Tory coalition that runs the east London council have agreed cuts of £50 million over the next three years. This will mean assets flogged off to private developers and more privatisation of vital services such as school transport for special needs children.

Protest to keep council housing

06 January 2001
TENANTS AND trade unionists are preparing for a major lobby of parliament against council house privatisation on Wednesday 24 January. The lobby has been called to demand that New Labour drops its attempt to end council housing and force through the privatisation of all remaining 3.2 million council homes in Britain.

Unions organise against Labour's tube sell-off plan

06 January 2001
LONDON Underground workers were to begin ballots for strike action this week after management rejected union demands to preserve safety and staffing levels. The ASLEF and RMT unions are fighting the effects of New Labour's proposed PPP privatisation of the tube. The dispute hits at the heart of New Labour's privatisation mania. Strikes on the tube have the potential to kill the sell-off and add to the pressure on the government to renationalise the railway.

Renationalise the rail now

06 January 2001
Privatisation wrecks railways

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