Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 5 May 2010

After the election...

Prepare for battle

Barking PCS pickets, photo Pete Mason

Barking PCS pickets   (Click to enlarge)

Fight the devastation of jobs and services

In the last days of the general election campaign the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) tried to provoke the 'big three' parties into breaking their silence and coming clean on the 'savage cuts' of 55 billion on average that they all intend to make.

The IFS estimates that the cuts could be the worst since the Second World War.

Any combination of the three main parties in government will hope to bring the pain of swingeing cuts, currently being inflicted on the Greek working class, to Britain.

The Financial Times has said a new government may cut public sector pay by 5%, freeze benefits for a year, means-test child benefit, abolish winter fuel payments, and cut bus passes for pensioners. Three leading trade unionists gave their response to The Socialist.

The RMT and POA call on parliament to unshackle the unions, photo Paul Mattsson

The RMT and POA call on parliament to unshackle the unions, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

quote marks 2 opening

Alex Gordon, President of the RMT rail workers' union

The leaders of the three principal political parties have decided that they will attack public spending in the same way as the government of Greece has been ordered to.

The reaction of the trade union movement in this country is going to be absolutely critical. If it follows the example of the Irish Confederation of Trade Unions, of social partnership with a government implementing public spending cuts, there will be very serious consequences for families and workers for the next decade.

But on the other hand, if the trade union movement decides to call for a show of strength, for public demonstrations and marches to defend services, there could be a very different story.

It seems likely that the new government will be rather weak and subject to pressures from the financial markets, as well as from the EU stability and growth pact. If there are no countervailing pressures from socialists and trade unionists then clearly they will do the bidding of those forces and it will be very serious for the rest of us - so we need to fight back.

We are going to need coordinated and if possible generalised action, not just local action - otherwise it will be death by a thousand cuts. And there's going to be a need for, not only a generalised fightback, but a politicised fightback.

quote marks 2 closing

Unless we also call for repeal of the anti-trade union laws there will be a disjunction between what we're saying and what we're doing. Trade union leaders will be tied up in the high court through injunctions and workers will demand to know why we're not demanding the removal of those undemocratic laws.

quote marks 2 opening

Roger Bannister, Candidate for Unison general secretary

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has forecast that up to 500,000 jobs or 10% of the public sector workforce will be cut by the new government! Pay and pensions will also be under attack. But why should ordinary workers pay for an economic crisis not of their making while bankers are bailed out?

quote marks 2 closing

Local union branches should not be left to fight these battles on their own. National action is needed to defend jobs, pay and pensions and in Unison we need a general secretary who will lead such a struggle. All public sector unions must come together to build a united fight against these attacks.

quote marks 2 opening

Chris Baugh, Assistant general secretary, PCS civil servants' union (personal capacity)

It's quite clear that the massive budget deficit, caused by the bailout to the bankers and speculators, will be used as a pretext for even deeper cuts in public spending and an even greater rush to privatise.

It means that the struggles of PCS members, and trade unions in general, need to form part of an organised opposition. We need to not just be speaking together, we need to be taking industrial action together if we're going to stop the cuts and stop the onslaught after 6 May.

A feature of this election has been the consensus of the three main political parties. This just reinforces one of the major political needs in Britain today - to fill the gap left by New Labour's abandonment of working class interests.

quote marks 2 closing

That is a gap that the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition is determined to fill by building up support within communities, within trade unions and by mobilising a genuine, serious, socialist alternative.

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

In The Socialist 5 May 2010:

Prepare for battle

Environment and socialism

Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster: Stop the polluters!

Socialist Party campaigns

Angry Jarvis workers protest

In brief

Finance a socialist future!

Patronising and arrogant: Lib Dems and Tories show true colours

May Day

Workers celebrate May Day: Marching together against the bosses' attacks

Socialist Party news and analysis

EDL racists challenged in Aylesbury

Bring the killers of Blair Peach to face justice

Socialist activist starts hunger strike

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Eurozone hit by debt crises

Socialist Students

Higher education students and staff: Get ready to fight after the election

Huddersfield University: Everything for sale


Tower Hamlets mayoral referendum


Home   |   The Socialist 5 May 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleNasty party out the Tories

triangleThe Tories must be driven out

triangleGermany: Election results in political earthquake

triangleGerman elections: rise of the far right and right-wing government will provoke resistance

triangleMagic money tree


triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleWho's watching who?: The fight for justice, trade union and democratic rights

triangleSocialist Party PCS bulletin: Scrap the pay cap

triangleFood processing workers vote for action against miserly bosses

Roger Bannister:

triangleCertification officer confirms that Unison did break the rules in general secretary election

triangleLiverpool city region mayor election - almost 8,000 votes for TUSC

triangleMersey metro-mayor TV debate

Alex Gordon:

triangleThe role of the RMT in changing Labour

triangleLancaster public meeting: a century of war

Trade union:

triangleCWU fights court attempt to stop national strike


triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Black workers and the British trade unions


triangleJustice for Tube cleaners demo

Public sector:

triangleSurrey County Council staff on collision course over pay freeze

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition:

triangleSurveying Labour councillors - will they fight cuts?

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Justice for Tube cleaners demo



Salford Unison condemns pay cuts


Royal Mail

CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike



Carlisle NHS campaigners hand in petition to MP



Don't wreck our rec! Campaigning to save green space in Standish



No more fire deaths - ensure safety now!



Cardiff Socialist Students confront 'Parasite' Jacob Rees-Mogg


John McDonnell

Manchester rally discussed unionisation and nationalisation



Join the Orgreave Halloween rally



Workplace news in brief


Democratic rights

Who's watching who?: The fight for justice, trade union and democratic rights


Northern Ireland

Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs



Too much to cross the Mersey


Royal Mail

Set for national strike action



Supporting the general strike in Catalonia

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

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

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party out the Tories

triangle11 Oct CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangle11 Oct The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against...

triangle11 Oct Catalonia: Workers can finish what Puigdemont won't

triangle6 Oct Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangle4 Oct The nasty party turns on itself... but the Tories must be driven out

More ...

triangle16 Oct Teesside Socialist Party: After the party conferences

triangle17 Oct London: TUC lobby & rally; and London march

triangle18 Oct Warrington & St Helens Socialist Party: 1917-2017; the October Russian Revolution

triangle18 Oct Hackney Socialist Party: 100 years ago - the Bolshevik-led revolution

More ...

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



October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017





















Platform setting: = No platform choice