Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/979/26774
From The Socialist newspaper, 24 January 2018
News in brief
Children were divided into rich and poor playgrounds during lunchtime at an 'academy' primary school in the West Midlands.
Wednesbury Oak Academy in Tipton asked parents for £6 donations to fund new play equipment. The school then denied access to children whose parents hadn't paid.
After exposure by the Mirror, the school cancelled the policy. But this Ryanair approach to schooling, with state education dismembered into saleable packages, is in the profit-driven DNA of academies.
Workers decommissioning a BP oil rig got just £2.70 an hour (Click to enlarge)
Bosses can legally pay less than the minimum wage to workers doing dangerous jobs out in the North Sea.
Transport and maritime union RMT has found the latest government guidance on rates only extends 12 miles into British waters.
It seems staff decommissioning a BP oil rig received just $45 for a 12-hour shift. That's about £2.70 an hour, working all day with heavy and flammable materials, over a freezing cold sea.
BP recorded profits of $1.4 billion in just the first three months of last year.
Benefit cut beaten
Campaigners have beaten a government attack on disability benefits. 150,000 people will now receive more of the support they need.
The Tories had tried to change the rules around the 'personal independence payment' (PIP) to exclude some mental illness sufferers. PIP is itself an attack, replacing the superior 'disability living allowance' benefit.
After a successful legal challenge, the government considered appealing and emergency legislation to retain the brutal cut. But a statement on 19 January conceded defeat.
The climbdown follows persistent campaigning by disabled rights activists including the Socialist Party.
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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.
- 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 24 January 2018:
What we think
Turn Carillion crisis into movement against privatisation and capitalism
Socialist Party news and analysis
Welsh NHS crisis - we cannot go on like this
£2m to remove Grenfell-type cladding: residents to get bill
Private profit out of our NHS
Leeds playing fields rescued from Blairites
May's "war on plastic" still puts profits before the planet
News in brief
Vietnam War: 50 years since the Tet Offensive
Socialist Party workplace news
Lecturers vote for strikes against pension cuts
PCS executive agrees next steps in pay campaign
Brum care workers protest council attacks
Amy Murphy Usdaw campaign meeting
Ballots against Bromley privatisers
Ferrybridge: Workers down tools over unpaid wages
International socialist news and analysis
Punishment of Tamimi family awakens wave of international solidarity
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Defend Louise Harrison - save Yorkshire women's services!
Victory against government's war on eastern European homeless
Women rally defiantly
Gentrification scourge hits Kent
Kirklees council opens consultation of library services
Southampton: Pay rise for uni boss, job losses for lecturers
Red Mary - a Force of Nature
Obituary: Maureen Mulhearn 1945-2018
Carillion and the construction industry
Carillion crisis exposes PFI chaos
Universal credit: set up to fail
The Socialist inbox
The Socialist 24 January 2018 |
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