Northern region conference. Photo: Nick Fray
Northern region conference. Photo: Nick Fray

Craig Worswick, South Tyne and Wear Socialist Party

The fight for socialism flowed through our five-hour northern regional conference, with members contributing from our Carlisle, Teesside, and Tyne and Wearside branches, some for the first time.

Theo Sharieff, Socialist Party executive committee, started by setting out a perspective on the world stage, citing that one quarter of the world’s population currently lives in a conflict zone at the outset of a new era, in which capitalism lurches from crisis to crisis.

Elaine Brunskill, Socialist Party northern region secretary, then led a discussion on the situation in Britain, as a general election draws closer, and the Tories brace themselves for a hammering.

The crucial tasks for us were set out, such as the vital necessity of working in the trade unions, at a time when workers once again show their willingness to reach for the strike weapon, as a means of winning pay rises and defeating efforts to cut jobs.

A key focus was how the Socialist Party is building across the region. Our branches continue to grow, while the working class is fighting back against Tory cuts, unconvinced by Keir Starmer’s pro-austerity, pro-war Labour Party.

Just as important is the need for a new mass workers’ party to challenge Labour from the left, with a fighting, socialist programme in the interests of workers. There will be at least nine candidates from the region standing for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) in the upcoming council elections – contributing to the stand of 240 TUSC candidates across the country.

To help produce and circulate election material, the fighting fund appeal raised £585.41. And a further £75 was raised through the sale of socialist books.