Socialist Worker

Glasgow


Election drama founded on little real substance

07 February 2004
IMAGINE TONY Blair and Gordon Brown, clown-like smiles glued to their eroded faces, spending week after week pressing flesh and chatting up the locals in the pubs and chippies of Barrow-in-Furness. And imagine an electoral system that gives more strategic clout over the selection of the Labour leader to Cornwall and Essex than to Liverpool and Glasgow.

Walkouts show civil servants up for fight

29 November 2003
HUNDREDS OF workers in job centres and social security offices in Glasgow and Basildon in Essex held an unofficial walk out on Friday of last week. They responded magnificently to their bosses imposing a terrible pay deal on 85,000 workers in the government's new Department for Work and Pensions. This is the first serious unofficial action in the civil service in over 15 years. The mood is so angry that wildcat strikes could break out again.

News in Brief

18 October 2003
Protesting is not a crime A GLASGOW court has cleared Fatima Uygun of charges resulting from a peaceful occupation of Govanhill swimming pool in August 2001.

Now the mood for action is spreading

20 September 2003
Scotland SCOTTISH nursery nurses planned more industrial action this week in their dispute over pay. They are angry that the employers' body, Cosla, has not come up with a serious pay offer. The nursery nurses announced the next stage in their campaign at a well attended family day held in Glasgow last Saturday.

Interview with Donna Franceschild, writer of TV's The Key

13 September 2003
The Key is a major new drama about three generations of working class women in Glasgow. Their story reveals an inspiring history of political activism and working class militancy rarely seen on TV. Donna Franceschild wrote The Key. She spoke to Socialist Worker about why political drama is back in fashion.

Nurses step up pressure

30 August 2003
NURSERY NURSES in Scotland plan to escalate their action against low pay and for respect for the valuable job they do. The workers' Unison union has said that nursery nurses across Scotland will strike for a week, between Monday 8 September and Friday 12 September, unless Scotland's local authorities come up with a decent offer. The week of strikes will culminate in a protest at Glasgow Green on Saturday 13 September.

Vibrant history of resistance to war

09 August 2003
GLASGOW IS a city with a rich socialist tradition. The roots of its reputation go back to the First World War when the Red Clyde was part of a great wave of working class revolt that swept Europe. The impact of the war made munitions centres like Glasgow fertile territory for labour unrest and socialist agitation. It produced many fine working class fighters, including Britain's greatest anti-war socialist, John Maclean.

Nursery nurses

09 August 2003
NURSERY NURSES in Central Scotland and in Dundee took three days of strike action last week. This was the latest phase of action in the fight of nursery nurses across Scotland for a decent pay rise and recognition for the valuable job they do. At its height the fight has involved up to 6,000 nursery nurses in strike action, with noisy protests in Glasgow and Edinburgh.

RMT throws down challenge to Blair

05 July 2003
THE RMT rail union took a historic step this week towards building a mass left wing challenge to New Labour. The union which moved the resolution setting up the Labour Party 103 years ago voted overwhelmingly at its conference in Glasgow to allow funding for socialist candidates standing against New Labour.

How Labour Party has weeded out dissent

17 May 2003
NEW LABOUR laid into George Galloway last week, suspending him from the party for daring to speak out against the war on Iraq. The leadership want to shut him up. They know one effect of suspension is to rule him out of being nominated for a safe Labour seat in Glasgow. Their treatment of Galloway is in stark contrast to those who have certainly "brought the party into disrepute".

Unison elections

12 April 2003
"THE UNION needs change from the top down. I want to be there arguing for socialist politics and action at all levels of the union," says Glasgow health worker Margaret Bean.

For a different war

01 March 2003
"WE ARE an anti-war and a pro-war party. We are opposed, under any circumstances, to the unleashing of mass murder on the innocent civilians of Iraq. But we are also committed to a war - a war on poverty and inequality." In his keynote speech Tommy Sheridan summed up the two key issues that dominated the Scottish Socialist Party's (SSP) annual conference held in Glasgow last weekend.

The resistance surrounds Blair

22 February 2003
In Glasgow last Saturday Tony Blair fled from the anti-war anger that swept towards Labour's spring conference. Around 100,000 people marched through Glasgow to the exhibition centre where the Labour Party was meeting. It was the biggest demonstration in the city since the 19th century. Tony Blair was scheduled to speak at 2pm - the demonstration was scheduled to be outside the centre to meet him. Instead Blair sneaked into Glasgow at 10am, spoke to a closed meeting and scurried off before the march began. Margaret Thomson was on the march, carrying the "Sighthill United Against War" banner.

Arms train drivers plan next move

25 January 2003
RAIL WORKERS in Motherwell, near Glasgow, have underlined why they refused to move a train carrying ammunition for use against Iraq last week. Their action should be an inspiration to everyone who opposes war. At a meeting of their Aslef union branch Motherwell train drivers discussed the stance taken by drivers working for the EWS rail company. The meeting agreed a statement which began:

Defending refugees

18 January 2003
PROTESTERS AGAINST the government's brutal new laws on refugees took to the streets of London, Glasgow and Manchester last week.

Hammer blow for 500 in Scotland

18 January 2003
Is this the future for thousands more? "MANAGEMENT'S message was 'Happy New Year and you're sacked', 'Season's greetings, you're stuffed'." Harry McCarthy is a bitter man. He's one of 500 people thrown on the dole by Fullarton Computer Industries in Gourock, 20 miles from Glasgow. Without warning, the company locked the workforce out and told them not to come back after the Christmas holidays.

Soldiers are pawns in game

14 December 2002
LIKE JOHN from Glasgow (Letters, 30 November) I too served in the army. I was involved in the firemen's strike in 1977. I was young and naive. I joined the army thinking it would be a good way to see the world. How wrong I was. I had only been in the army a few weeks at the time of the strike. As we were new recruits in the army, that we had to break the strike was stupid, irresponsible and dangerous.

'We were right to go on strike'

07 December 2002
STRIKING HEALTH workers at the Glasgow North Health Trust trust returned to work on Monday of this week after over three weeks of unofficial action. The low paid admin and clerical workers voted overwhelmingly to end their indefinite strike at a mass meeting.

I disobeyed order to break a strike

30 November 2002
I HAVE been watching the troops running Green Goddesses during the firefighters' strike. I used to be a squaddie many years ago. In 1975 the Labour government faced a strike over pay by dust workers in Glasgow.

Angry, defiant, and staying out

30 November 2002
ON THE same day as the firefighters' eight-day strike started, over 300 health workers at the Glasgow North Health Trust voted to continue their unofficial strike action. The strikers' mood was determined and defiant. One striker said, "We struck for a decent pay rise for all, and we shouldn't return until we get it."

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