The Covid pandemic accelerated the crisis of capitalism and disrupted every aspect of society. In its wake the need for socialism is clearer than ever.
It outlines what is necessary to begin the process of achieving a socialist society, in Britain and internationally, able to meet the needs of humanity and to protect the planet.
Socialist Party campaigning
The Socialist Party has a long and proud record of struggling to defend working class people. We are involved in many campaigns throughout England and Wales, and support many others internationally.
- Stop the Israel-Gaza war! For the immediate withdrawal of the Israeli military from the occupied territories
- For democratically organised defence committees in local communities
- For a mass struggle of the Palestinians, under their own democratic control, to fight for liberation
- For the building of independent workers’ parties in Palestine and Israel and links between them
- For an independent, socialist Palestinian state, alongside a socialist Israel, with two capitals in Jerusalem and guaranteed democratic rights for all minorities, as part of the struggle for a socialist Middle East
- No trust in the capitalist politicians, internationally or in Britain. Fight to build a workers’ party in Britain that stands for socialism and internationalism
For analysis, see:
- Mass protests spread against war on Gaza
- Mass united workers’ struggle to stop the war on Gaza!
- Israel-Palestine: 30 years since the Oslo accord – will there ever be a Palestinian state?
- Stop the Israel-Gaza war! For workers’ unity and struggle against national conflict and oppression
- Stop the war in Ukraine. Withdraw Russian troops and end the bombing
- No to ethnic division and cleansing. For workers’ unity, and self-determination and full democratic rights for all minorities
- Visa-free travel for those fleeing the war and the right to asylum. No to racist immigration laws
- Homes and services for all: take the wealth off the oligarchs and the 1%. Workers mustn’t pay the price for the economic consequences of war
- No trust in Nato or the capitalist politicians. For the building of an independent workers’ movement
- Fight for a socialist alternative to war and capitalism
For analysis, see:
- The war in Ukraine – a commentary on Paul Mason’s muddle
- What does Ukraine president, Volodymyr Zelensky, really stand for?
- Nato – the bringer of peace or war?
- Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the new era of global capitalism
- A new phase in the Ukraine war
Socialist analysis on Corbynism and Labour
Some of our articles and analysis:
- Tory and Labour conferences drive home need for new workers’ party
- Starmer consolidates post-Corbyn Blairite transformation of Labour
- Is Mick Lynch right that voting Labour is the only option at the next election?
- A review of the book by Owen Jones ‘This Land – the Story of a Movement’, which provides an insider’s account of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party.
- The Socialist Party’s analysis of the December 2019 general election result.
- The editorial in the Socialist on Keir Starmer winning the Labour Party leadership contest
- The editorial in the Socialist following the suspension of Corbyn from Labour
In the 2017 snap general election Jeremy Corbyn enthused millions of workers and young people. Labour gained 3.5 million votes, including a million who had previously voted Ukip. The potential existed to build on that by promoting a socialist platform, offering a real alternative to austerity.
Unfortunately however, during Jeremy Corbyn’s time as Labour leader, at every stage the Corbyn wing was prepared to make concessions to the pro-capitalist Labour right wing in the vain hope of pacifying them.
The suspension of Jeremy Corbyn under Keir Starmer’s leadership has shown the determination of Starmer to annihilate the last vestiges of ‘Corbynism’- as the Socialist Party warned would be the case.
Since then Starmer has ditched policy after policy from the Corbyn era to make the Labour Party safe for big business. As the next general election approaches and a Starmer-led Labour government almost certain, the need for a party that represents working-class people is urgent.
The Socialist Party is fighting for a workers’ list of candidates in the next election, made up of campaigners, young people, and trade unionists, with trade union backing to fight against the cost-of-living crisis, for pay rises, mass council house building programmes and more.
Labour councils have continued to privatise, close and cut vital services, jobs and pay. Rather than taking a stand against Tory government cuts in funding, they do the bidding of the government. They shouldn’t be making any cuts, and their plans should go further, to include mass council house building and measures such as rent control in the private sector.
Labour-led councils have billions of pounds in general reserves. These funds, along with using their powers to borrow money, could enable the implementation of no-cuts budgets, while launching a struggle to demand sufficient funding from the government.
Unfortunately, however, Labour councils under Starmer will not follow this road and are continuing to cut already decimated services, plus workers’ pay and conditions.
Across the country many councils are reaching crisis point, the result of failing to fight for the resources needed over the last decade. Labour-controlled Birmingham council the biggest and most significant to have entered financial difficulties. In ‘Council ‘bankruptcy’ crisis: Take the Liverpool road, make no cuts’ we call on councils like Birmingham to make a stand, like Militant-led Liverpool council did in the 80s. To refuse to implement the cuts and launch a campaign mobilising council unions, campaigners and the working class of the city to demand the resources needed instead of cuts and tax hikes.
The Socialist Party is part of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) and we stand candidates in local elections fighting for such a strategy.
Workplace campaigns and disputes
We are constantly involved in the struggles of trade unions and trade unionists against attacks on workers’ pay, jobs, pensions, and terms and conditions, and fighting back against the cost-of-living-crisis.
The strikewave over the last year has shown that working-class struggle is back, well over one and a half million workers have taken strike action in the last year.
Some of these disputes, including junior doctors other health workers and rail workers, are still ongoing. Others managed to win, through striking, more than was offered by the government.
Hundreds of thousands of workers have discovered that collective action can win.
Discussion and coordination at every level can build confidence and strengthen the movement. Workplace union meetings and picket rallies can thrash out the tactics of the strikes and feed back to the leaderships. Rank-and-file participation needs to be built. Strong and effective broad left organisation is needed to bring activists together to discuss and fight for a militant programme within their union.
Trades councils can bring unions together in local areas to build solidarity but also to bring their strength and authority to fighting local issues.
The Tories responded to this strikewave with new attacks on the right to strike. Socialist Party members in the unions have pushed for unions not to comply with the new ‘Minimum Service Levels’ legislation. And for the TUC to launch coordinated action should any union or union member be penalised by these anti-union laws.
Millions of people are still angry with their plunging living standards. Turning this anger into a mass movement requires a leadership with a programme that shows our interests lie in uniting and fighting back.
That starts with: inflation-proof pay rises, pensions and benefits; a £15-an-hour minimum wage with no exemptions; repealing all anti-union laws; rent caps and a mass programme of council house building and of home insulation; fund and staff our NHS; nationalisation of energy, water, rail, post, and the banks under democratic working-class control; and a socialist alternative to capitalist exploitation and poverty.
We play a leading role in building the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN, http://shopstewards.net/), which helps workers in struggle at rank and file level. It has played a key role in mobilising pressure on the trade union leaders to organise more – and more widespread – coordinated action against government austerity measures.
Many of our members are workplace trade union representatives and some have been elected onto higher bodies in their union, including onto the national executive committees of Unison, NEU and RMT.
And much more …
- We fight against all cuts in jobs, services and benefits; against student tuition fees and against privatisation. We campaign for decent pay, pensions, benefits, and student grants.
- We fight for women to win what’s necessary to live a life free from inequality, poverty, discrimination and oppression.
See: A fighting programme for women’s rights and socialism
- We campaign to stop the destruction and pollution of our environment.
From May 2011 we stood in local elections as part of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) every year until 2018, and then again from 2021, and also in the 2010 and 2015 general elections
TUSC stood sufficient candidates in the 2015 general election to qualify for a UK-wide party election broadcast.
TUSC was co-founded in 2010 by the late Bob Crow, the RMT transport workers’ union leader. Its first steering committee included the Socialist Party and we have participated in the committee ever since. In 2012 the RMT decided to be represented officially on the committee. Along with the RMT, its steering committee today involves leading trade unionists from other unions together with the Socialist Party, the Resistance Movement, and independent socialists.
TUSC recalibrated its electoral activity following Jeremy Corbyn’s election as Labour leader, a development which it warmly welcomed. Consequently TUSC did not contest either the 2017 or 2019 general elections and only stood in other elections against those Labour candidates who opposed Jeremy Corbyn and were carrying out austerity policies.
In the May 2019 local elections we stood under our registered electoral name Socialist Alternative. But with Keir Starmer’s election as leader TUSC agreed to resume standing candidates from May 2021.
In the May 2023 local elections TUSC stood in the English council elections across 65 local authorities, plus two mayoral candidates.
TUSC stands for public ownership, not cuts and privatisation; jobs, not handouts to the bankers; the repeal of the anti-trade union laws, protection of the environment, decent pensions, and democratic rights. It presents the case for a democratic socialist society run in the interests of the people not the millionaires.
Between 1983 and 1992, as part of the Labour Party, we had three socialist MPs – Dave Nellist, Terry Fields and Pat Wall – who lived on the average wage of the workers they represented.
They never forgot their working-class roots or the problems of those who elected them – unlike many political and trade union leaders who live on inflated salaries.
We have also had Socialist Party councillors elected to serve terms of office representing the working class: Dave Nellist, Rob Windsor and Karen McKay in Coventry; and Ian Page and Chris Flood in Lewisham.
In 2006 in Huddersfield, Socialist Party member Dr Jackie Grunsell also won a council seat – with a majority of over 700 – standing as a ‘Save Huddersfield’s NHS’ candidate.
Militant newspaper – Defy the Poll Tax law
Over two decades ago we were known as the Militant Tendency and campaigned in the Labour Party for socialist policies.
We led Liverpool City council’s battle in the mid 1980s for decent housing, jobs and services, and later were leaders in the battle to defeat Tory Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s poll tax which forced her to resign.
We outline below some of the other campaigns and organisations that Socialist Party members are involved in.
If you want to find out more or get involved click here.
Socialist Students campaigns against university tuition fees, against cuts in funding for higher education, for the restoration of a living grant and on many other issues.
Visit Socialist Students website
The Socialist Party opposed the invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and called for the immediate withdrawal of foreign troops. We have been actively involved in many other anti-war campaigns and protests, including against the war in Ukraine, and against Israeli military onslaughts on Gaza.
We have been involved in many campaigns to stop hospital and ward closures around the country, and against the ongoing privatisation of health services. Read our NHS campaign articles.
The Socialist carries many reports on health workers’ struggles against low pay and privatisation, some led by Socialist Party members.
Capitalism is literally destroying the planet. We participate in many campaigns and protests against this destruction and put forward the necessity of a socialist alternative to stop and reverse Climate Change.
Socialist Party members also regularly participate in demonstrations on many other environmental issues; including anti-fracking, for flood defences, against toxic waste incinerators and against nuclear power. Click here for articles.
The Black and Asian group of the Socialist Party originally produced a programme for fighting racism in 2021 the Black Workers’ Charter has now updated for 2023.
Click here to read some of our articles on defending equality and the rights of Black and Asian people.
We were involved in campaigning against the war in Sri Lanka and helping to build the organisation Tamil Solidarity in Britain (www.tamilsolidarity.org).
We have been involved in many campaigns against racism and neo-fascism, including demonstrations against the far-right English Defence League and BNP, as well as in other anti-racist activities – such as against discriminatory harassment and brutality by the police.
Across the country we have been involved in campaigns against home evictions, the privatisation of council housing, for rent caps, repairs and improvements and on many other issues.
We call for a massive building programme of publicly owned housing, on an environmentally sustainable basis, to provide good quality homes with low rents.
The Socialist Party fights against sexism and women’s oppression. We fight against cuts to vital servicess, against the sexism inherent in the capitalist system and for a socialist society free from oppression.
- A fighting programme for women’s rights and socialism
- Combating violence against women: A socialist perspective on fighting women’s oppression
- Other articles
Socialist Party Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender group
Our LGBT Group is involved in campaigns against anti-gay discrimination and for civil rights for all. Click here for articles.
Socialist Party members were involved in the initiative to set up Youth against Racism in Europe (YRE)in 1992. Involving thousands of young people, it co-organised a demonstration in 1993 of 50,000 people to demand the closure of the Nazi BNP’s HQ.
The Socialist Party works both independently and with other groups to fight all racism, prejudice and discrimination.
When the far-right try to march or demonstrate, we are involved in organising counter-demonstrations, uniting local communities to stop them.
More article categories:
- Would you like to find out more about the Socialist Party? Why not Contact or Join the Socialist Party?