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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 May 2007

ESOL

Stop these education cuts

ON 28 April, Hackney Socialist Party members joined a union-organised east London demonstration against cuts to ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) courses in further and adult education.

David Walter, Hackney Socialist Party

Ever since New Labour came to power under the slogan 'Education, Education, Education', this government with a neo-liberal agenda, has instead pursued severe cuts in adult education, introduced fees to universities and handed parts of the education system to flat-earth rich businessmen in the form of Academies.

New Labour's attacks on ESOL in colleges across Britain threatens the social and economic wellbeing of often black, asian and eastern European immigrant working-class communities. Immigrant workers make up half the population of London. They are many of the cleaners, kitchen porters, security guards, nurses, doctors, teachers and vital public and private-service workers that help make London the second richest City in the world.

The hypocrisy of Tony Blair and his New Labour cronies is astounding. His empty rhetoric about tackling poverty, integration and respect for others is totally at odds with this attack on ESOL courses.

Many of the poorest people in Britain are either Asian or Black African, mostly in immigrant communities whose first language won't be English. Cuts in ESOL and further education, together with a rabid anti-immigration policy, will make it very difficult for people who cannot speak English to get help or even a job. This Catch-22 situation leads to greater exploitation.

Currently Hackney college is threatened with the redundancies of 14 support workers and 35 teachers at the end of the academic year. Hackney is one of London's poorest boroughs with both British born working-class and immigrant communities. This is a blatant attack on Hackney communities. That is why 700 to 800 lecturers and students converged on Hackney Town Hall in a very successful demonstration.

As long as New Labour, Tories or the Lib Dems pursue their neoliberal agenda through massive budget cuts, and tax cuts for the multinationals and the rich, our public services, NHS and education will continue to be attacked.

We in the Socialist Party fully support campaigns to fight cuts in ESOL and further adult education across the country.

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In The Socialist 3 May 2007:

2007 election analysis: Time for a new workers' party

Scottish Elections: Labour rocked as SNP wins


Socialist Party election campaign

NHS cuts... privatisation... widening wealth gap

Campaign for a New Workers' Party conference


Socialist Party NHS campaign

NHS: A matter of life and death in Swansea

Fat cats eye the cream


Socialist Party workplace news

PCS: Fighting for jobs, pay and services

Picketing the Tate Modern


Socialist Party editorial

Widening wealth gap needs working-class response


Socialist Party election campaign

Packed election rally for Scotland's Solidarity

Irish election - Socialist Party takes on the establishment

New Labour panics and resorts to lies

Yorkshire ISR and Socialist Students day of action


Global Warming

Alternative energy: Winds of change?


Education

Stop these education cuts


Socialist Students

Campaign to Defeat Fees

Seattle students walkout against the Iraq war

Pressure mounts for troops withdrawal


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Russia April 1917: Lenin returns from exile


Comment

Women must have the right to choose!


Socialist Party news and analysis

What 'public-private partnerships really mean

Campaigning for LGBT rights

Oppose legal aid contracts tooth and nail


Socialist Party workplace news

Support the Sunvic strikers

Greenwich workers fight on

Remember the dead but fight for the living

The scandal of HSE cuts


 

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