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Archive for May 2020

5 May 2020

spotPay full fees for virtual courses? - No way!

The HE sector faces a massive funding 'black hole' which could see thousands of job losses

5 May 2020

spotDispatches from the NHS front

I've spent most of this week in the 'cold' emergency department, still wearing mask and apron, X-raying patients with broken bones, serious gastric issues, cancer and so on

5 May 2020

spotTories using pandemic to shift lab testing out of NHS

The Tories have set up a parallel structure to the existing NHS laboratories network, involving big private companies, and a mixture of unidentified and unqualified staff, writes a NHS laboratory worker.

5 May 2020

spotNo increase in transport capacity without adequate safety precautions

There are reports the government is considering abandoning advice to maintain two metres social distancing

6 May 2020

spotYour donations can keep the Socialist going

Our special coronavirus appeal is still getting a fantastic response. Donations are pouring in across England and Wales to make sure that we have the resources to produce our socialist analysis and programme

6 May 2020

spotUS: Trump's public health cuts have condemned thousands worldwide

More people in the US died from Covid-19 in three months than in nine years of the US armed forces' Vietnam War. The US private healthcare system has been shockingly exposed, writes Jon Dale, secretary, Unite union Nottinghamshire NHS Branch (personal capacity).

6 May 2020

spotThem&Us

The vice-president of Amazon has resigned over the sacking of workers who had organised against the company's unsafe working conditions during the coronavirus pandemic

6 May 2020

spotTest and trace: workers need a real plan

Only a national plan and workers' control can guarantee a safe exit from lockdown: There is a growing scientific consensus that successful management of the coronavirus crisis requires a comprehensive plan - combining mass testing, contact tracing and supported isolation of potentially infected individuals, writes Martin Powell-Davies, Socialist Party national committee.

6 May 2020

spotEDF Energy workers furloughed on 100% pay

Unite has successfully negotiated that nearly 500 EDF Energy workers will be furloughed on 100% pay during the coronavirus pandemic

6 May 2020

spotTV Review BBC Panorama: PPE shortage - how many lives will be lost?

I was astounded as to the extent of the government's PPE failures and how NHS staff are being put at risk, writes Barbara Clare, Stevenage Socialist Party.

6 May 2020

spotPeter Hadden remembered

Many Socialist Party members will remember Peter Hadden, who died ten years ago, on 5 May 2010 ('Obituary: Peter Hadden - an inspiring life for socialism' - socialistparty.org.uk)

6 May 2020

spotThe Tyneside apprentices' strike during WW2

I have been enjoying reading the articles on World War Two. There are many lessons to be learnt for today for our class and the youth, writes Heather Rawling, Leicester Socialist Party.

6 May 2020

spotIndia: Fighting the curse of capitalism and coronavirus

The coronavirus crisis has exposed all the inadequacies, incapacities, and insoluble contradictions of India's capitalist state, writes Jagadish G Chandra, New Socialist Alternative (CWI in India).

6 May 2020

spotTrump puts profit before safety (again)

US president Donald Trump has invoked a 1950s Korean War-era piece of legislation to re-open meat processing plants, closed because of high rates of coronavirus infections among their workforces

6 May 2020

spotHomes needed to end overcrowding

The revelation that people living in poorer areas of the country are twice as likely to die from Covid-19 as those in affluent areas, according to the Office for National Statistics, will not be a surprise to readers of the Socialist, writes Dave Carr, East London Socialist Party.

6 May 2020

spotPostal workers force Royal Mail back

CWU members forced Royal Mail to retreat over attempts to push through unilateral changes to the 'universal service obligation'

6 May 2020

spotBosses push to lift lockdown - they only care about profits

This week will mark seven weeks since Britain entered lockdown. It appears that the death rate from Covid-19 is finally starting to fall. Nonetheless, the official number of deaths is now higher than every other European country

6 May 2020

spotBail out the real wealth creators, not the rich

Remember the bank bailout after the 2007-08 crisis? The banks went cap in hand to the taxpayer while their executives continued to receive multimillion-pound bonuses.

6 May 2020

spotHomeless left on streets during pandemic

On 29 March, the government told local councils and outreach teams to bring all rough sleepers into accommodation, writes Andrea Gilbert, homelessness worker.

6 May 2020

spotNationalise British Airways to stop 12,000 redundancies

British Airways' announcement of 12,000 redundancies represents an opportunistic attack on its workforce, writes a British Airways worker.

6 May 2020

spotUnsafe Workplace? "It's up to you" PCS tells reps and members

PCS union reps and members at Paisley Jobcentre walked out on 24 April. Following an outbreak of Covid-19 in their office, they reached an agreement allowing staff to go home

6 May 2020

spotGoing viral: Socialist comments and letters on the corona crisis

The Covid-19 pandemic is a world social crisis which touches every aspect of life. The iniquities and failings of the capitalist system are being exposed

6 May 2020

spotRolls Royce threatens 8,000 job losses

Rolls Royce has announced a possible and imminent 8,000 redundancies. This was explained as 'necessary' because of huge cuts in production by aircraft manufacturers such as Airbus

6 May 2020

spotFurther protests in Ireland against Debenhams closures - UK fightback needed

Among the slew of retail companies entering administration, Debenhams has the highest profile, not least for only recently coming out of administration after closures, write Socialist Party members in Usdaw.

7 May 2020

spotSocial partnership is an attempt to shackle trade unions and prevent industrial action

Rank-and-file trade unionists and the public in Wales will question this 'partnership'

11 May 2020

spotSafe social-distancing car-cavalcade protests

Newham TUC organised a car cavalcade to combine with the Thursday clap

11 May 2020

spotDispatches from the front: bosses prepare fresh attacks on NHS

As an NHS nurse I was asked by the Socialist to provide a note from the 'front line'

11 May 2020

spotLeicester care workers face pay cut and worse conditions

Care home workers in Leicestershire are to be rewarded for their courage and sacrifice during this crisis with a pay cut and worsening conditions of service, writes Heather Rawling, Unison union member (personal capacity).

12 May 2020

spotNo going back to unsafe schools

The intention to reopen some England primary school classes on 1 June was met with disbelief

12 May 2020

spotFurlough scheme extended - workers need 100% of wages

Rishi Sunak has announced the government's plans for the furlough scheme, which will be extended until October

13 May 2020

spotListen and watch: Podcasts & Videos

Podcasts and videos from the Socialist Party and CWI

13 May 2020

spotSocialist planning is the alternative

With planning, key products like ventilators and PPE should have been easy to provide

13 May 2020

spotJohnson's plan terrifies me - readers react to lifting lockdown

Boris Johnson has filled me with dread. Construction workers are being thrown to the wolves. It's going to be impossible to socially distance on building sites, writes Elaine Brunskill, Gateshead.

13 May 2020

spotStarmer in full retreat over C-19 rents crisis

The economic hardship from the coronavirus crisis is biting; millions must choose between paying the rent and eating, writes Paul Kershaw, chair, Unite housing workers branch.

13 May 2020

spotTransport union RMT tells members: refuse to work in unsafe conditions

The RMT has issued fresh advice to members not to work in unsafe Covid-19 conditions, warning that confused government messaging could have lethal consequences

13 May 2020

spotWest Midlands trade union activists discuss the battle for safety on the front line

Socialist Party members in the West Midlands met online in a forum to talk through workplace situations during the coronavirus pandemic, and discuss strategy to defend workers' health against some truly despicable management practices from the private and public sectors

13 May 2020

spot'Victory in Europe' 75th anniversary: A resurgent workers' movement and the fight for socialism

Victory in Europe had come at an enormous cost. 40 million soldiers and civilians had been killed, 27.5 million in the Soviet Union alone.

13 May 2020

spotGoing Viral: Socialist comments and letters on the corona crisis

The Covid-19 pandemic is a world social crisis which touches every aspect of life. The iniquities and failings of the capitalist system are being exposed

13 May 2020

spotTories put profit before lives - unions must stand firm on workplace safety

Workplace safety must be under the control of the workplace unions with democratic accountability to members.

13 May 2020

spotThe Spanish Flu of 1918 and how it "fanned the flames of revolt"

Laura Spinney's book on the 1918 flu pandemic, first published in 2017, is now being widely read

13 May 2020

spotA new world order - global reconstruction after World War Two

The United States emerged from the carnage of World War One immeasurably strengthened, both economically and militarily, writes During the Covid-19 crisis, many commentators have talked about a 'new Bretton Woods' and the need for post-crisis international capitalist cooperation and reconstruction. In the fifth in our series on 'war, global crises and working-class struggle', Robin Clapp looks at reconstruction and global relations after the Second World War and the lessons for today.

18 May 2020

spotParents - Organise against 'back to school' plans that threaten everyone's safety

Schools simply can't open safely yet to more children.

18 May 2020

spotContract tracer speaks out: Tories' plan is outsourced chaos

The government's new contact tracing scheme is outsourced to Serco - which subcontracted recruitment to Capita, writes a NHS contact tracer.

18 May 2020

spotCommunities condemn Tory handling of crisis - with safe protests

Car cavalcades took place in Sheffield and Haringey.

19 May 2020

spotTrades council debates workers' political representation

"Alongside the unions we need a political party that can represent workers".

19 May 2020

spotTransport workers and passengers mustn't pay the price

The Tories are trying to force workers back to work

20 May 2020

spotThe Jungle: capitalism's remorseless attack on workers' safety and conditions

Fiction review: The parallels between Upton Sinclair's description of 1906 meat packaging factories and workplaces under coronavirus are frightening

20 May 2020

spotRich get handouts - workers get pay cuts

Make the rich pay for the Covid crisis: Some of the richest people in the country are getting huge government handouts because of coronavirus. Meanwhile, millions are poorer as a result of the economic crisis triggered by the pandemic

20 May 2020

spotCrisis in council services: Labour must fight or stand aside

A 10 billion financial black hole faces councils, according to a Labour Party report

20 May 2020

spotFurlough cut-off could force millions back to unsafe workplaces

Will my boss starve me back to work this summer? It's a question that might start keeping furloughed workers up at night

20 May 2020

spotSafe protests against Tory corona chaos continue

More car cavalcades have taken place to protest against Tory mishandling of the Covid-19 crisis and cuts, with the latest in Southwark and Newham

20 May 2020

spotJohnson claims workplaces safe but HSE cancels inspections

The prime minister has told anxious workers that construction, manufacturing and food workplaces will be "Covid-compliant"

20 May 2020

spotTrump, coronavirus, capitalism, and the presidential race

Trump's administration has still failed to mobilise an effective response to the pandemic

20 May 2020

spotPosties walk out in Peterborough after manager tests positive

Royal Mail workers left work on the morning of 16 May after learning a line manager had tested positive for Covid-19

20 May 2020

spotGoing viral: letters to the editors

Letter to the editors: NHS, schools, anti-lockdown protests and more

20 May 2020

spotObituary: Rob Crabb

A nurse who fought with strength and dignity: Wakefield Socialist Party is saddened to hear of the untimely death of Rob Crabb at the age of 60

20 May 2020

spotUniversal Basic Income: not a solution to insecurity and poverty under capitalism

None of the schemes with elements of UBI provide a decent level of income

20 May 2020

spotConfidence plummets in Tory strategy for Covid-19


Workers must build workplace and political resistance
Boris Johnson's speech on 10 May was a watershed moment in the Covid-19 crisis

20 May 2020

spotOrganising to fight for workplace safety

Workers called for safety before profit in a big NSSN meeting

20 May 2020

spotJohnson's reckless 'back to school' plans threaten everyone's safety

School workers are in the front line of the government's unsafe back-to-work strategy - but they and parents are organising a huge resistance

20 May 2020

spotPostal workers' action results in double victory for union

Postal workers are celebrating seeing the back of CEO Rico Back

21 May 2020

spotSocialism the Podcast: 2018 episodes

The weekly Marxist podcast from the Socialist Party - episodes from 2018

21 May 2020

spotSocialism the Podcast: 2020 episodes

The weekly Marxist podcast from the Socialist Party - episodes from 2020

22 May 2020

spotStrong union response needed against job cuts

Rolls Royce's plan to cut 9,000 jobs will impact on its UK civil aerospace division

22 May 2020

spotMick Cotter 21-9-57 to 20-5-20

Mick Cotter

It is with great sadness and regret that the Socialist Party has lost a dedicated comrade and friend of many members

22 May 2020

spotBlack and Asian Covid-19 deaths: an indictment of capitalist inequality

The Covid death figures broken down by ethnicity caused widespread shock and anger

25 May 2020

spotCare home workers suffer PPE shortage and job loss fears

My neighbour contacted me the other night. She is a care worker at a home for the elderly. She had seen the Socialist Party posters on my fence

25 May 2020

spotNo return to unsafe construction sites

The last five years has seen an average 36 construction worker deaths each year. According to the Office for National Statistics, in just four months of Covid-19 there have been 199 deaths!, writes Andy Bentley, Unite construction sector.

26 May 2020

spotMore blunders and profiteering in Tory track-and-trace scheme

The Tories' 'track and trace' scheme fails on all counts

26 May 2020

spotCoronavirus pandemic news in brief

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is launching a bailout scheme called 'Project Birch' to prevent the collapse of key big businesses

26 May 2020

spotUnited action can defeat Tories' dangerous school plan

The plans for primary schools to open more widely show complete disregard for public health.

27 May 2020

spotEerily quiet before second wave - don't reopen schools!

"Don't use the Q-word" has been said more than once this week. But it does feel eerily quiet, writes An NHS health professional.

27 May 2020

spotThe 'Lucas Plan'

When workers set out an alternative to job losses by creating socially useful products and technology: The announcement by Rolls Royce of 9,000 redundancies in its aero-engine business is one of many likely threats of job losses in the coming recession, writes Jane Nellist Coventry Socialist Party and president of Coventry TUC (personal capacity).

27 May 2020

spotChinese state's imposition of draconian law reignites Hong Kong protests

Tens of thousands of angry demonstrators poured onto the streets of Hong Kong last weekend, not only defying social-distancing regulations, but confronting police armed with tear gas, pepper spray and water cannon, writes Clare Doyle, Committee for a Workers' International.

27 May 2020

spotEconomic collapse leads to renewed protests across Lebanon

After a pause for a little over a month with the Covid-19 lockdown, new protests have erupted as the situation for ordinary workers in Lebanon has become desperate, writes Iain Dalton, Socialist Party national committee.

27 May 2020

spot1920s Britain: A "country nearer Bolshevism than at any time since"

In the sixth article in our series - 'war, global crises and working-class struggle' - Socialist Party national committee member Alistair Tice asks: does the picture following the World War One give more pointers to what we can expect today in terms of new economic crises and workers' struggles?.

27 May 2020

spotHull Trades Council debates workers' political representation

Tackling the coronavirus threat is the most pressing problem facing working people. Unfortunately, with a few honourable exceptions, we have to take up that fight without the benefit of a combative national leadership in either the trade unions or the Labour Party.

27 May 2020

spotEnergy firm plans to make 2,600 redundant

OVO Energy has announced plans to make 2,600 workers redundant, including workers in Cambridgeshire, writes Carl Harper, Socialist Party Cambridgeshire.

27 May 2020

spotSchools aren't safe

It's reckless. It's unsafe. It flies in the face of all advice from scientists and from teachers. The schools must not reopen on Monday 1 June, writes Louise Cuffaro

27 May 2020

spotFight P&O's billionaire bosses' jobs cut plan

P&O Ferries has announced plans to cut 734 jobs in Dover and 122 jobs in Hull after it reported a severe downturn in demand, writes Eric Segal, Kent Socialist Party.

27 May 2020

spotGoing viral - Socialist comments and letters

The Covid-19 pandemic is a world social crisis which touches every aspect of life. The iniquities and failings of the capitalist system are being exposed

27 May 2020

spotWe need readers' support to fight capitalist crisis

The success of the Socialist Party's special appeal has resulted in our Fighting Fund 25,000 national target for the present quarter being achieved halfway through the campaign period!

27 May 2020

spotReckless, lying cheats

* One rule for Cummings, another for us
* More Tory lies over PPE and testing
* Dangerous return to school and work strategy


Not only Cummings but the whole Tory government must go!

29 May 2020

spotLessons from the Corbyn experience

Socialism Today no.239, June 2020

What are the lessons of Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party leadership for the ongoing struggle to achieve mass, working-class, socialist political representation?

31 May 2020

spotOutrage spreads globally following US police murder of George Floyd

Protesters have taken to the streets across the US - and internationally - following the killing in Minneapolis of an unarmed black man

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