Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/579/7267
The Socialist 12 May 2009 |
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Visteon workers discuss socialism
Thirteen Visteon workers attended a meeting of Basildon Socialist Party on 6 May. The workers at the Basildon plant are very glad of the support, practical assistance and advice they have received from the Socialist Party.
Paula Mitchell, London Socialist Party
A month ago none of them would have imagined they would have occupied their factory or mounted round-the-clock pickets, never mind actually attend a meeting to discuss socialism.
But the events of the last month have turned their lives upside down.
There was general agreement that capitalism is an unfair and exploitative system and that the working class needs to fight to change it. More in question was how that fight might develop, and whether it is really ever going to be possible to achieve a socialist society.
The trade unions' link with the Labour Party was raised by Visteon workers even before Socialist Party members mentioned it. Every person present thought that Unite should disaffiliate from Labour and use the money to campaign for a new working class party. We raised our demand for a workers' MP on a worker's wage to counter the scandalous attitude of Labour and Tory MPs alike with their 'snouts in the trough'. The No2EU European election campaign has been received with enthusiasm from the start of this battle, and several of the workers took leaflets away to distribute.
The experience of this battle has raised a whole host of ideas and questions about how struggles will develop, what workers should demand, and what the solutions are. We hope to continue to work alongside these men and women in the coming months.