Socialist Worker

Birmingham


200,000 homes at stake in two ballots

16 February 2002
Decisive battles are set to take place. They are part of a hidden war waged by the New Labour government. It is a war to destroy one of the pillars of the welfare state-council housing. New Labour is out to privatise three million council homes. In Birmingham tenants will begin to vote on 18 March on whether their homes are handed to private housing associations.

A great response on the picket lines

02 February 2002
Socialist Worker went down a storm with striking Arriva rail workers. At the mass picket in York 27 copies were sold, while 6 were sold to pickets in Cleethorpes, 7 to pickets at Leeds Central station, and 4 in Bradford. Last Friday, in the build-up to the civil service strike, 11 were sold at Albert Bridge House in Manchester, 8 at the Employment Service head office in Sheffield, 4 at Ravenshurst benefits office in Birmingham, and 3 at each of Finsbury Park job centre, Tottenham job centre and Tottenham Benefits Agency.

Newsquest

26 January 2002
National Union of Journalists members at Newsquest-owned titles in Bradford struck for half a day last week over low pay. NUJ president Rory McLeod joined the picket lines. There were also NUJ delegations from Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and Coventry.

Stop the War protest

15 December 2001
A thousand people marched in Birmingham last Saturday against the war. The march was organised by Birmingham Trades Council and supported by the Stop the War Coalition. A rally heard speakers from a range of organisations and campaigns. Later Artists Against the War held an inspiring social with African drummers and visual projections.

Strong roots can feed mass protest

03 November 2001
Some 1,700 people marching through Sheffield, 2,000 demonstrating in Glasgow, 500 on a Preston march, around 1,600 at a public meeting in Birmingham. Those are just a few of the anti-war protests that have taken place in the last week.

Socialist Alliance

13 October 2001
A WELL attended liaison meeting of delegates from local Socialist Alliance groups met last Saturday in Birmingham. The meeting agreed to affiliate to the Stop the War Coalition, and to encourage all Socialist Alliances to throw themselves into campaigning against the war.

A fiddle to sell homes

01 October 2001
TWO OF New Labour's flagship council home privatisation schemes were suddenly rescued last week when extra money appeared to ensure the sell-offs went ahead. The plans to hand all council homes in Glasgow and Birmingham to private housing companies are the two biggest in the country.

Putting the anti-war case

29 September 2001
SOCIALIST Worker supporters report a big increase in sales as large numbers of people look for arguments against Bush's war drive. Last Saturday saw large street sales-85 in Brixton in south London, 232 in Birmingham, 307 in Manchester, 28 in Guildford, 50 in Hove, and many others. They helped to create a visible opposition to the war as local anti-war coalitions started to take shape.

Birmingham University

15 September 2001
STAFF AT the University of Birmingham surprised their bosses on Friday of last week by driving in convoy into Chancellor's Court, which is reserved for senior management. Once there they covered their cars with union banners and posters protesting against proposed car parking charges.

'I'm leaving Labour after 26 years'

10 March 2001
Socialist Worker spoke to some of the people on last Saturday's demonstration against privatisation in Birmingham about why they're supporting the Socialist Alliance. STEVE GODWARD is the divisional secretary of the West Midlands Fire Brigades Union:

'Sold down the river to make businessmen richer'

10 March 2001
Around 1,000 people marched through Birmingham last Saturday to demand an end to privatisation of public services. There were 36 banners on the march including the local RAGE campaign against the closure of elderly people's homes, Defend Council Housing, the regional FBU and UCATT union banners, and several from local Socialist Alliance groups.

Rage against privatisation

03 March 2001
"I call on everyone to attend this Saturday's march and rally in Birmingham. We can make a difference." That statement comes from Steve Godward, the divisional secretary of West Midlands Fire Brigades Union, urging support for the anti-privatisation demonstration in Birmingham.

Manchester to Montpellier

24 February 2001
In Leeds 9 copies of Socialist Worker were sold at the General Infirmary, 6 were sold at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital, 5 at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary and 4 at Shrubhill bus garage. Manchester sales included 7 at both Schlumberger's and at the Royal Infirmary. Elsewhere 8 were sold at De La Rue Printers in High Wycombe, 5 at Aston post office in Birmingham and 4 at Copperas Hill post office in Liverpool.

Preparing election challenge

24 February 2001
Around 120 Socialist Alliance candidates, election agents and supporters met in Birmingham last Saturday to plan the general election challenge. "There is a real urgency. There are just 47 days to go if the election is on 5 April and 75 days if the election is on 3 May," said the chair of the National Network of Socialist Alliances in England, Dave Nellist, who introduced the day. The day was very productive, with sessions on campaigning, raising finance, the role of candidates and using the press.

'Labour has betrayed the elderly'

17 February 2001
RAGE led the local TV news in Birmingham last week! RAGE is the vibrant local campaign against the Labour council's criminal plan to privatise 30 elderly care homes across Britain's second biggest city. Over 50 people took over the pelican crossing outside the Normanhust home last week. The mood was fantastic. People were chanting "People not profit. Save our homes," and held banners saying, "Labour has betrayed the elderly."

'A storming tour'

17 February 2001
Over 2,000 people packed into the continuing Globalise Resistance tour around the country last week. The previous weekend 1,800 people had attended the tour's Glasgow and London legs. "The tour stormed through Birmingham with a lively conference bringing together activists- black and white, old and young, red and green," says Chris Crean from West Midlands Friends of the Earth, one of the 250 people who attended the Birmingham conference.

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."

SWP news - Steel sales

13 January 2001
14 copies of Socialist Worker were sold outside Llanwern steel works in South Wales campaigning over the threatened closure, while 6 were sold at Cardiff's Penarth Road post office. 11 papers were sold at Aston post office in Birmingham along with 5 at Land Rover. Liverpool sales included 11 at the Royal Liverpool Hospital and 10 at Cammel Laird shipyard, while in Manchester 15 were sold at the Co-operative Insurance HQ and 3 at Moss Side Benefits Agency.

One family's fight for justice

13 January 2001
The family of a black postal worker driven to suicide by racism at work have won the first step in their battle for justice. The victim's parents won the right this week to a posthumous employment tribunal hearing over racial discrimination. Jermaine Lee, a 26 year old Birmingham postal worker, hanged himself in November 1999.

Free Satpal Ram

05 February 2000
The Free Satpal Ram Campaign has called a vigil outside the Home Office on Monday 28 February. The campaign is to meet with minister Paul Boateng to press the government to release Satpal. Satpal has been in prison for 13 years for defending himself against racist thugs who attacked him in a Birmingham restaurant.

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