Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/995/27367
From The Socialist newspaper, 16 May 2018
Chesterfield May Day: march turnout great
Socialist Party members on the Chesterfield May Day march, 7.5.18, photo by Tessa Warrington (Click to enlarge)
Dave Gorton, Chesterfield Socialist Party
Glorious bank holiday weather brought a high turnout to the 40th Chesterfield May Day march and rally, where Unite's Len McCluskey and the National Education Union's Kevin Courtney delivered strong messages that the labour movement must fight back against austerity and a weak Tory government.
Len's warm mentions of the town's former MP, the late Tony Benn, and Dennis Skinner, himself in attendance, were in stark contrast to his justified attack on former North East Derbyshire MP, Natascha Engel, whose pro-fracking stance lost Labour a safe seat to the Tories at the last election. Labour had held the seat for 80 years. Engel has since become a consultant to Ineos, the company seeking to develop fracking in the area! The founder and boss of Ineos, multi-billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, has been declared Britain's richest man in the Sunday Times Rich List.
Many demonstrators were carrying Unison and Socialist Party placards calling for Derbyshire's threatened library services to remain in public hands.
Socialist Party members from Chesterfield, Mansfield, Nottingham, Leicester and Sheffield ensured the Socialist Party had high visibility on the day. Over 40 copies of the Socialist were sold, the top seller being Denise Tooley-Okonkwo, and nearly £100 collected for the Socialist Party's Fighting Fund.
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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.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.
In The Socialist 16 May 2018:
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Exclusive interview with Gazan activist: "The more they kill us, the more the anger increases"
May 1968: Revolutionary explosion as two thirds of workforce join strike
PCS conference 2018: building on the union's militant record
PCS elections - Left sweeps the board
Socialist Party news and analysis
Tories' continuing EU quagmire is Corbyn's opportunity
Royal wedding opulence... during longest pay squeeze in 200 years
Richest worth £724bn... as 100,000 kids fall into poverty
Socialist Party workplace news
Strike at Tesco Dagenham for better pay
Belgium Lidl strike victory
Lively Hull demo against college cuts
Harrogate College strike against cuts
Leeds Acas conciliators walkout
Workplace news in brief
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Thousands march on TUC demo
'When we fight, we can win' - campaign halts hospital closure
Chesterfield May Day: march turnout great
Save Our Square takes fight to developers
Save Southall Town Hall legal hearing success
Ronan Point disaster 50 years on
International socialist news and analysis
Spain: Student general strike against sexist, capitalist 'justice' system
Sweden: Socialist elected leader of 77,000-strong tenants' union
The Socialist Inbox
The Socialist 16 May 2018 |
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