Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/13640

Posted on 30 January 2012 at 10:52 GMT

Trade unionists and socialists prepare for May elections

TUSC candidates Alex Gordon, President, RMT, Joe Simpson, Assistant general secretary, POA, Steve Hedley, RMT London region secretary, Ian Leahair, FBU executive committee, London, April Ashley, Unison NEC and Martin Powell-Davies, NUT NEC, pic P Mattsson

TUSC candidates Alex Gordon, President, RMT, Joe Simpson, Assistant general secretary, POA, Steve Hedley, RMT London region secretary, Ian Leahair, FBU executive committee, London, April Ashley, Unison NEC and Martin Powell-Davies, NUT NEC, pic P Mattsson

Last Saturday over 50 prospective candidates and campaign organisers from around the country met to plan the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition's (TUSC) challenge in May's local and London Assembly (GLA) elections.

Following the statements by Eds Milband and Balls, the leaders of the Labour Party, saying that they support the government coalition's cuts and that a Labour government would not reverse them, the question of building an anti-cuts working class political alternative is an idea that millions will be more open to than ever before.

This was reflected in the prominent trade unionists in attendance and the proposed slate for the GLA elections announced at the meeting (see press release below).

Across England there will be dozens of candidates challenging the idea that cuts are in any way necessary.

The conference endorsed a five point minimum programme that all candidates wishing to stand for TUSC would have to agree with:

Sean Figg

TUSC press release 27.1.12

New left-wing coalition to challenge for a seat on London Assembly

A new alliance, the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC), made up of trade union members and socialists, is to stand candidates in the Greater London Election on 3 May to challenge the all-party support for the government's austerity cuts and pay freeze.

The coalition expects to win support from trade unionists and other voters who are angered by the recent statements of Labour leader Ed Miliband and the Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls, in which they stated that they will not reverse the Government's cuts and that they support its pay freeze.

A list of candidates will challenge in the 'top up' section of the election and if it wins at least 5% of the vote across the whole of London it could win at least one place on the 25-seat Greater London Assembly.

Alex Gordon, RMT president, photo Paul Mattsson

Alex Gordon, RMT president, photo Paul Mattsson

The coalition has already selected prominent London trade union leaders such as Alex Gordon, the national president of the RMT rail and maritime union and Steve Hedley the RMT's London Transport regional organiser, Ian Leahair, the Fire Brigades Union executive committee member for the capital, Joe Simpson, assistant secretary of the Prison Officers' Association and Martin Powell-Davies, who is the London representative on the national committee of the NUT teachers union.

Martin Powell-Davies, London representative on the national committee of the NUT teachers union, photo Paul Mattsson

Martin Powell-Davies, London representative on the national committee of the NUT teachers union, photo Paul Mattsson

The Labour Party will be concerned that many public sector workers who participated in the 30 November pensions' strike may be moved to vote for this coalition because of the failure of Labour leaders to support the walk-out.

Labour leaders will also be worried that rank and file union members of Labour affiliated unions could press for their funds to go to TUSC candidates instead of to Labour.

Steve Hedley, London Regional Organiser, RMT , photo Socialist Party

Steve Hedley, London Regional Organiser, RMT , photo Socialist Party

Steve Hedley, whose RMT union was expelled from the Labour Party in 2004 for backing the Scottish Socialist Party, said, "We need candidates who support the ordinary man and woman.

"TUSC is the only organisation that opposes all cuts, defends pensions and benefits for all working people.

"Labour just wants a compliant, silent union movement to hand over its money. TUSC will be a voice for all workers and will support trade unions in struggle."

TUSC national committee member Nick Wrack, who is also a candidate, said, "London is a city of stark contrasts.

"There is a huge amount of poverty amidst the plenty. Corporate bosses and bankers still get their million pound pay and pension packages while one in six London workers is paid less than the Mayor's 8.30 per hour living wage.

"Millions are suffering from the cuts to services and benefits yet last year the city paid out over 4 billion in bonuses.

"It's extremely hard even for those on better wages to make ends meet. We believe that there is an opportunity for a party that will speak up for working-class London to make a real break-through and that would begin to change the nature of political debate in Britain today."

TUSC believes it can get a candidate elected if it wins at least 150,000 votes across London.

For more information contact: Nick Wrack (m) 07812 063 409; (w) 020 7842 7562; nick.wrack@tooks.co.uk
Will McMahon (m) 07968 950 223; wsmcmahon@yahoo.co.uk

Candidates selected for the TUSC GLA list so far include (in alphabetical order):

April Ashley, UNISON Executive Council

Alex Gordon, RMT President

Steve Hedley, RMT London regional organiser

Ian Leahair, FBU National Executive Committee

Martin Powell-Davies, NUT national executive

Joe Simpson, POA assistant secretary

Jenny Sutton, UCU Chair, London Regional Committee (FE)

Nick Wrack, TUSC national committee member (former chair of Socialist Alliance and Respect)

There will also be candidates from the CWU postal union and the PCS public service workers union.

(All standing in a personal capacity)

The final list is not yet decided. Other candidates are still being considered.

The FBU has 5,500 members in London.

The RMT has over 12,000 members in London Underground alone.


This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 30 January 2012 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

TUSC:

triangleToo much to cross the Mersey

triangleSurveying Labour councillors - will they fight cuts?

triangleLabour mayor needs to stop all cuts

triangleWhere is Scotland going?

triangleThe role of the RMT in changing Labour

London:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

triangleNo cuts - hands off King George A&E!

triangleTories scrap the NHS pay cap: now fight for real-terms pay rises!

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: "You can't have capitalism without racism" (Malcolm X)

Cuts:

triangleYoung people being strangled by debts

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

triangleSalford Unison condemns pay cuts

Labour:

triangleSheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

triangleHundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

Alex Gordon:

triangleLancaster public meeting: a century of war

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition:

triangleReadmit the socialists - for a federal Labour Party

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

19/10/17

Refugees

Hundreds of torture victims wrongly detained

18/10/17

Brexit

Tories torn - bin them now

18/10/17

What we saw

What we saw

18/10/17

Food

Obesity epidemic: end food market anarchy

18/10/17

NHS

Tories scrap the NHS pay cap: now fight for real-terms pay rises!

18/10/17

Debt

Young people being strangled by debts

13/10/17

Labour

The end of the Tories?

11/10/17

Tories

Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

11/10/17

Black history

The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against capitalist austerity

11/10/17

Housing

Housing crisis: Corbyn's positive measures blanked by Labour's right

11/10/17

Universal Credit

Major attacks 'Universal Credit', half a million more face poverty

11/10/17

Them & Us

Them & Us

11/10/17

NHS

NHS meltdown - fight the Tory cuts

11/10/17

IMF

IMF helps cause inequality it slams

4/10/17

NHS

Tories wreck our NHS

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

More ...

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

triangle25 Oct Swansea Socialist Party: Mother Jones - A US labour pioneer

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2