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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 October 2015

Enthusiasm for socialism at freshers fairs

Leeds

At Leeds University, we signed up 81 students, gave out 500 leaflets and sold ten copies of Socialist Students' magazine Megaphone on just our first day! Socialist Students in Leeds had one of our best ever freshers interventions this year. 68 people attended our first event of the year, a film showing of Pride. Ray Goodspeed, one of the founding members of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) spoke at the very successful event. There's new enthusiasm for socialist ideas among students and young people following the Labour leadership election victory of Jeremy Corbyn. Many students who joined our society said they were doing so because Socialist Students stood head and shoulders above the other groups on campus. We've campaigned against the student loan privatisation, run campaigns against sexism and won the women's rep position in Leeds Beckett Student Union. Now we're leading the Leeds For Free Education campaign, which is organising a demonstration on 24 October.

Mary Finch

Cardiff

Socialist Students made an appeal to Cardiff freshers to join the campaign to end the refugee crisis. Even the dazzling opportunities of freshers week couldn't distract students from demonstrating their solidarity. The society set up campaign stalls both inside and outside societies' fairs and called on every student who walked past to sign the petition to defend the right to asylum. The generosity and solidarity that we tapped into shames the capitalist governments of Europe who have done everything in their power to block refugees from getting the help they need. 100 was contributed over the course of two days, helping to pay for material to get the word out and other campaign expenses. The outpouring of sympathy has very clear, concrete aims - to fight to get the needs of desperate people what they need. But it also has another meaning: it is a protest against a system that puts profits before the satisfaction of the basic needs of ordinary people.

Ross Saunders

Swansea

Swansea Socialist Students kicked off the year with a successful stall at the student union's freshers fair, the best for years. We spent two full days distributing over 750 leaflets, selling 46 copies of the Socialist, and signing up almost 90 students. This was followed by a well-attended meeting where we planned our first protest.

Gareth Bromhall

Sunderland

Four members of the Socialist Party attended Sunderland University freshers fair. There was an enthusiastic interest in discussing the ideas of socialism as shown by the 62 who signed up to Socialist Students. Also, 26 copies of the Socialist were sold and many expressed an interest in joining the Socialist Party. We spoke to a Colombian student who signed our petition against tuition fees and couldn't believe that a "rich country like Britain" charges its citizens for education, whereas in her "poor" home country she had completed two university degrees free of charge.

Peter Rippon

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 7 October 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

'No time to lose' to organise against austerity

Kick out the Tories!

Back our doctors and nurses

NHS cutters pay doctors not to refer sick patients to hospitals

Tories: let pensioners freeze to death, they can't vote us out then

Them & Us


Socialist Party feature

The housing crisis - a crisis of the profit system


International socialist news and analysis

Catalonia

International news in brief


Workplace news and analysis

Emotional and inspiring strikers secure victory

Junior doctors campaign

RMT president election: back Sean Hoyle

Steely anger in Redcar as plant is mothballed

No wage cuts! Fund equal pay in Derby

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

100,000 march against Tory cuts

Kick out the Tory entryists

Anger after violent youth deaths in south London

Enthusiasm for socialism at freshers fairs

Leeds to get 'ethical' letting agency

Cuts to school crossing supervision in Derbyshire


 

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