Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/682/12576
After the riots...
A mass workers' movement is needed to defeat this rotten government
In her 9 August article (A mass workers' movement is needed to defeat the government) Hannah Sell, Socialist Party deputy general secretary reminded readers of a warning the Socialist Party had previously given:
"The scenes of despair and explosions of anger like those of 1981 will be back on our streets.
"Deprived areas of major cities - if not the central areas, then the 'banlieus' or outskirts as in France - will be the scene of new conflagrations."
This warning was given just four months ago, in an article on the anniversary of the Brixton riots.
While opposing rioting and looting Hannah concluded:
"The explosion of anger on Britain's streets is above all a condemnation of capitalism, and its inability to offer the next generation even the measly standard of living that workers have had in the last twenty years.
"The trade union movement needs to act to show it is on the side of young people, but to be fully effective this needs to be linked to the struggle to develop a new mass party for workers and youth which stands for a socialist society.
"Only by taking the big corporations that dominate Britain's economy into democratic public ownership would it be possible to begin to provide a real future for young people.
"Capitalism is incapable of providing even the basics - a decent job, a home, an education - to the next generation. Democratic socialism would mean production could be planned to meet the needs of all and not for profits of a few."
The Socialist Party calls for:
- No to mass unemployment. For huge public investment in a massive programme of socially useful job creation. For decent minimum wages, pensions and benefits that we can live on. Don't cut our public services such as fire, care or advice - expand them!
- Re-open all closed youth facilities and services such as Connexions. No more cuts. Re-employ all those who have lost their jobs with funding from central government
- Invest in young people's future. Restore the EMA and increase it. No to university, ESOL and college fees. For good publicly funded education and training as a right for all young people
- No to police harassment and racism. End discriminatory stop and search and section 60. No increase in repressive police powers
- No to draconian sentencing of those caught up in looting. For the setting up of a democratically run inquiry into the riots involving elected representatives of trade unions and community organisations, that could also set the parameters on how the offences are dealt with, with the right to review sentences already imposed
- An independent trade union-led inquiry into the death of Mark Duggan. Scrap the IPCC. We need police accountability through democratic control by local people and trade unions
- Immediate re-housing of all those who lost their homes in the riots. No to evictions of families of those charged. For government investment in mass renovation and house building, creating jobs and improving health
- Compensation for all small businesses affected
- No to all cuts in public services including the fire services. Reverse all privatisation
- Nationalise the banks and big corporations under democratic workers' control and management with compensation only on the basis of proven need
- For working class internationalism. The bond markets and speculators and the governments who represent them are inflicting misery across the world. We stand in solidarity with workers and young people in Greece, Spain, North Africa and across the planet who are fighting back
- For a socialist world free from the horrendous profit motive which results in poverty, racism, war and the suffering of millions
- Build a united, democratic and organised working class movement
- Support the Youth Fight for Jobs campaign, which already has the backing of six national trade unions, especially the Jarrow to London March for Jobs in the autumn. See jarrowmarch11.com
- Join and promote the National Shop Stewards Network lobby of the TUC to call for a 24-hour public sector general strike in the autumn as the next step of a sustained mass trade-union based campaign against all cuts. See www.shopstewards.net
- Drive out the Con-Dems. Support the Trade Union and Socialist Coaition (TUSC), an alliance of the Socialist Party, others and trade union leaders like Bob Crow as the first step towards building a new mass workers' party that can express and fight in the interests of all workers and youth. See www.tusc.org.uk
- Join the Socialist Party in the fight to replace this 'sick', rotten and chaotic system, where the livelihoods, lives and futures of the billions across the planet are crushed in the drive for the obscene profits of a few bloated billionaires.
We stand for building a working class struggle for a socialist world
In The Socialist 17 August 2011:
The street eruptions and aftermath
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist Party youth and students
Socialist Party workplace news
Comments and reviews