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From The Socialist newspaper, 17 January 2018

Southern Socialist Party conference: discussing the way forward in 2018

Southern Socialist Party conference January 2018, photo Southern Socialist Party

Southern Socialist Party conference January 2018, photo Southern Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Nicholas Doyle, Portsmouth Socialist Party

Socialist Party Southern conference on 14 January was well attended by those eager to discuss the way forward in 2018.

The main discussion was what we think will be the major developments of 2018, introduced by Socialist Party executive committee member Rob Williams.

Rob pointed out that since 2015 referendums and elections have gone the wrong way for the Tories and the ruling class.

Theresa May has so little authority that she can't even carry out a meaningful cabinet reshuffle.

Rob also pointed out that in 2017 we saw a strike wave which shows the anger at the biggest cut in living standards since the Napoleonic wars.

The recent Communication Workers' Union (CWU) strike ballot at Royal Mail, with turnout higher than the 50% threshold needed, shows what is possible.

Contributions from the floor focused on the NHS and the Labour Party. The main points being the sheer level of the crisis facing the NHS through privatisation and cuts.

In the afternoon the conference split into three workshops on finance and party building, the trade unions, and youth and students work.

The conference was closed with a report of the work of the Committee for a Workers' International and the election of the Southern regional committee. Members go back to their branches ready for the struggles in 2018!

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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 17 January 2018:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Carillion crisis: demand action to save jobs and services

NHS crisis: under pressure from all angles - end cuts and sell-offs!

Victory! Trump's UK visit cancelled by fear of protests


What we think

Corbyn's Labour needs 100% anti-cuts strategy and fight for democracy


International socialist news and analysis

Tunisia: explosion of protests against government austerity

Stop repression in Hong Kong and China


Workplace news and analysis

RMT strikes against driver-only operation continue

Mini-strike wave continues and intensifies

Hackney school cleaners strike

PCS union 2018 elections - nominate the left slate for a continued fighting leadership

Home care workers to strike

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

We must fight all council cuts!

No to the Woolwich monster block

Undercover policing legal challenge

Heating scandal on east London estate

Lobby pushes Liverpool council to oppose privatisation

Packed Newham meeting against academies

Socialist Party women's meeting brings together members to share experiences

Southern Socialist Party conference


Opinion

Opinion: foster care is work - carers deserve workers' rights

Opinion: British imperialism can take no credit in fight against Isis

Theatre: 'Young Marx' shows growth in great platform for his ideas


 

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