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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 March 2011

CWU youth conference 'ready and willing to take action'

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) held its annual youth conference on 12 February in Birmingham.

Young workers from all sections of the union were represented to discuss the movement against cuts and privatisation. They also debated how best young workers can take part given the role young people have played already.

Billy Hayes, general secretary of the CWU, correctly spoke about the importance of youth to the union and the labour movement. But despite quoting the great socialist writers and leaders Karl Marx, VI Lenin and Leon Trotsky in his speech, he failed to give any real answers to young members who wanted to know what will come after the TUC Demo in March.

Young members pointed to the importance of the demo as a step towards a public sector general strike rather than just letting off steam. Frustrated with the lack of direction, a number of delegates shouted 'we need leadership!'

In the second half of the conference there were very good debates and discussions over motions submitted by branches to instruct the youth advisory committee (YAC) in its work. Lenny Shail from Coventry branch moved a motion calling on the conference to oppose "all cuts, job losses and fee rises and recognise the importance of linking the struggles of young workers, students and unemployed" into one mass movement to defend the rights and benefits won over generations.

He called on the YAC to continue to work with Youth Fight for Jobs and to build support for and send delegations to future demonstrations of young people.

He pointed out the link between the attacks in education and the job losses and privatisation of Royal Mail that CWU members are currently facing. Lenny also pointed out the problems with the CWU's affiliation to the Labour Party who would be making huge cuts if they were in power too.

The motion was supported by the YAC and was passed unanimously by conference. The conference was an indication that there are many young trade unionists who are ready and willing to take action and build a truly united anti-cuts movement to fight every attack on the working class.

A CWU young member from Coventry

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In The Socialist 3 March 2011:


Anti-cuts campaign

Stop the cuts

Marching on the Con-Dem conferences in Wales

Fighting the cuts: Thousands protest, lobby and occupy

Lewisham election: There is an alternative!

Determination to beat the cuts


International socialist news

Fantastic results in Irish election: Socialists and lefts gain five seats

Elections see collapse of Fianna Fail, the traditional establishment party


Socialist Party news and analysis

Coalition steps up assault on NHS

Westminster: Save our children's services

Who 'agrees with Nick' now?

News in brief


Socialist Party workplace news

Largest protest yet against Wisconsin Governor's anti-union bill

Unison witch-hunt: Reinstate the Four!

End the blacklist

Workplace news in brief


Youth fight for jobs

Jarrow to London: March for jobs

CWU youth conference 'ready and willing to take action'


Socialist Party women

International Women's Day 2011: Women and the fightback


Socialist Party congress 2011

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International socialist news and analysis

Libya: A fight to the finish

Tunisia: Revolution and counter-revolution on the streets


Marxist analysis: history

Liverpool 1983-87: the council that fought Thatcher


 

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