JUNE 29TH, 2017
TUC and Labour: organise a general strike! Bring the Tory government down!
Theresa May leads a weak government intent on attacking the rights of the working class, but the vote for Jeremy Corbyn in the election showed that many people want to fight austerity including students, young people, casual and low paid workers. The question now is to build the fight back.
Fight austerity and racism
Nine years of austerity policies means the near destruction of the NHS, financial crisis in many schools, victimisation of trade unionists and rising hate crime (for example, attacks on disabled people, and racial and homophobic incidents). Austerity drives the oppression and the attacks on equal rights.
The right-wing media say class does not matter during or outside of elections. Grenfell Towers proves otherwise and the anti-austerity Labour vote was a class vote: Labour was 4 points ahead amongst those working part time and 6 points ahead amongst those working full time.
The Tories, propped up by the DUP, can hang on unless we put an end to it by mass mobilisation, continuous struggle and strikes. We must not let this opportunity slip.
Terror attacks and racism
The ISL unequivocally the condemns the acts of terror in London and Manchester and the terror attack on Muslims and Finsbury Park Mosque. Islamophobic attacks in Manchester surged by 500 per cent after the arena attack.
Terror attacks do not advance the struggle against oppression and capitalist control, they encourage it. May said during the elections that to fight terrorism they will remove human rights. Terror and racism divides the working class. We need unity in struggle.
Union leaders hold back struggle
In 2016 the fall in trade union membership was the biggest on record, partly because of anger against, and disillusions with, union leaders hiding behind the anti-trade union laws, and then blaming the membership for not fighting. The Guardian (15 November 2016), said that, “more than one in five workers, some 7.1 million people, now face precarious employment conditions that mean they could lose their work suddenly.”
The union bureaucracy avoids leading the struggle that will end austerity. At the same time, many sections of the working class are very sceptical on any improvement coming from Labour, because of the actions of previous Labour Governments. Added to this Labour and the unions tend to be linked in their mind.
It is one reason why many youth and workers have not tended to vote.
A number of ‘unofficial’ strikes in 2016 and 2017 amongst manual workers (such as the UVW and IWGB) and in the CWU (Communications Workers Union) were successful. Unofficial actions are returning (and these are not part of the official strike figures). All actions like this, that are launched by the rank and file workers outside of and sometimes against the union bureaucracy must be supported.
Build a workers and socialist alternative
Left and revolutionary groups such as the Socialist Party, Socialist Workers Party, Left Unity and the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition refused to stand even against right-wing Labour candidates.
We do not agree with them. Only the working class organised in a revolutionary party and fighting capitalism, such as the multi-nationals and banks, and taking them under workers’ control, could lead workers and poor people to socialism. Unfortunately, these parties forgot this elemental truth and now say Corbyn and the Labour Party can end austerity and open the road to socialism through parliament.
That is why the ISL call combative workers to organise independently of Labour, but at the same time demand that the TUC and Labour call a general strike to end the government and austerity. This is the road to socialism we fight for.
More austerity cuts implemented by Labour?
Councils are facing yet another round of Tory cuts from 2017. In all previous cases Labour councils and councillors have voted to cut local services and fire and transport services. They lend support for example for removing guards from trains.
If Corbyn truly wants to fight to end austerity we demand that he instructs all Labour councillors to vote against and fight any cuts. Now. Unions and communities must demand not another cut to be supported by any Labour Party councillor. We cannot wait for the return of a Labour Government.
Austerity and Cuts kill
The world has seen the burning Grenfell Tower. However, the residents of Grenfell Tower said their multiple concerns were “brushed away” for a long time by the council’s tenant management organisation.
Only last November, the Grenfell Action Group warned of “dangerous living conditions” and said: “It is a truly terrifying thought but the Grenfell Action Group firmly believe that only a catastrophic event will expose the ineptitude and incompetence of our landlord, the KCTMO.” Guardian.
It is a Tory controlled council, but the area was represented by Labour councillors. For safety’s sake there has to be a return to public controlled council housing. Tenant committees in all UK neighbourhoods must be created or strengthened to control rents, safety, social conditions. It is a matter of life or death.
Independent actions started within days after the election for example against the removal of bus services and a protest in many cities organized by women’s groups against a possible Tory government. They called a national demonstration for 24 June; there was another lively London demonstration on 21 June seeking justice for residents of Grenfell Towers.
Down with the Tory Government
- Support protests against the Tory government of crisis and austerity, and its local implementation by Labour.
- Rank and file union workers must call for UK strike action against the Tories and DUP, against austerity and all cuts.
- TUC and Labour leaders organise a general strike to end this government and austerity
Mass mobilisations against the government and austerity mass
We stand with Grenfell – justice now
Defend all immigrants – No to racism
Tenant control of rents, safety and social conditions
Labour: stop implementing austerity
TUC and Labour: organise a General Strike bring the government down
Facebook: International Socialist League
Write: ISL c/o News from Nowhere, 96 Bold Street, Liverpool L1 4HY