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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 June 2014

Stevenage: March against the far-right, racist EDL

The far-right, racist English Defence League (EDL) is planning to hold a march in Stevenage on 7 June. They want to spread their hatred and racist propaganda.

Stevenage has never had an event like this in its history - far-right supporters in the area in the 1970s and 1980s never gained any support.

Trade unions and socialists have always shown that working class unity is our strength and stood up to these ideas and kept them from growing.

But this means that we have not developed a well-oiled network to confront the far-right as has been the case elsewhere. So we've had to start from square one.

The local trades council, including members of the Socialist Party, called a counter demonstration. It put out a statement which has been circulated as wide as possible in the trade union and anti-racist movement and in the local press.

Following a court case, highlighted by the EDL, where two Muslim men and one woman from Stevenage were charged with trafficking, grooming and prostitution, the trades council explained that "...The vast majority of Muslims and of the Pakistani community are horrified by this crime, so why are the EDL demonstrating? The EDL want to promote racial division.

"Stevenage and District Trade Union Council will organise a counter demonstration because we feel that such hatred cannot go unchallenged and the division created between working people must not be allowed to grow."

Far-right groups like the EDL try to exploit legitimate fears that working class people have, particularly about a lack of jobs, homes and services.

They want to see working class people turn on each other rather than on the bosses and politicians who are really to blame.

That's why it's important that it's the trade unions showing the lead in Stevenage - the organisations who can lead united struggles against all attacks on workers.

In just two weeks we have built up quite a campaign against the EDL. Their trip to Stevenage will not be welcomed and the two or three EDL members in the town will remain isolated.

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In The Socialist 4 June 2014:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Workers can win: Victory for $15 campaign in Seattle

Enough of 'all the same' capitalist politics!

TUSC: Next steps building political voice for workers

Inclusive capitalism? You're having a laugh!

Children handed poverty "life sentence"

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

US: How Seattle won a $15 minimum wage

Ireland: Electoral surge against austerity


Socialist Party workplace news

"Enough is enough!" - 1.5m could strike over pay

NHS: We demand a living wage!

Come to NSSN conference!

Unite conference: Fighting policies needed

UCU: Members losing patience with leadership

PCS-Unite merger: Will it strengthen our fightback?

Leeds unions prepare for action

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Bakers' Union interview: "We can stop race to bottom"

Stevenage: March against the far-right, racist EDL

Rhydyfelin library occupied by protesters


Readers' comments

NHS: Night shift and a cold rage


Building the Socialist Party

Why I joined the Socialist Party

Plan now for the fundraising collectathon

'Join the socialists' week of action

Successful building in east London

Rapid recruitment in Plymouth


 

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Related links:

Stevenage:

triangleStevenage Socialist Party: Kick out the Tories!

triangleSunshine and socialism at Socialist Party summer camp

triangleStevenage supports Corbyn

triangleGovernment reneges on rail modernisation pledge

triangleStevenage Socialist Party: After the election the fight goes on

Racist:

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triangleOppose racist symbols and the racist system

triangleReaders' opinion: Things will never be the same

triangle"We're going to fight racism and capitalism with socialism"

Far-right:

triangleBirmingham South Socialist Party: 1990s struggles against the far-right

triangleFight the far-right - fight for socialist policies

triangleEuro elections 2019 - Across Europe

EDL:

triangleTommy Robinson BBC demo: socialist fightback needed to undermine far right

triangleStand up against abuse - justice not racism

English Defence League:

triangleFar right pose increasing terrorism threat

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