Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/776/17241
Building TUSC in Caerphilly
Jaime Davies, Caerphilly TUSC byelection candidate
When a byelection came up in the Penyrheol ward of Caerphilly we knew we had to stand and give local people a working class alternative to Tory austerity policies and the failure of Labour and Plaid Cymru to mount any sort of resistance to Westminster's cuts agenda.
When the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) stood in the ward for the first time in the full council elections last year, we received 175 votes or 5.9%.
Despite a much smaller turnout this time, we still won 173 votes, meaning our share rose to 9.7%
This result placed us third, ahead of the Tories in fourth, behind Labour in second and Plaid Cymru who won the seat.
Our focus on the doorstep and at our public meeting was the local fight for a 24-hour doctor-led A&E at Ystrad Mynach hospital.
We also opposed council executives' illegal pay rises of around 20%, and pledged to fight the killer bedroom tax.
The Tories are never really much opposition in the South Wales valleys but trying to privatise the NHS in England, imposing the Bedroom Tax and cutting left right and center couldn't have helped matters for them!
We are looking forward to 2016 where we aim to catch Labour and become the main opposition to Plaid Cymru. The next council elections may be three years away but the building starts now!
The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is an electoral alliance that stands candidates against all cuts and privatisation.
It involves the RMT transport workers' union, leading members of other trade unions including the PCS, NUT and POA, and socialist groups including the Socialist Party.
In The Socialist 14 August 2013:
Socialist Party campaigns
Socialist Party editorial
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party events
Socialist Party NHS campaign
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party workplace news
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition
Socialist Party comments and reviews