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From The Socialist newspaper, 8 August 2018

Protests win temporary halt to refugee evictions in Glasgow

Socialist Party Scotland members on the Glasgow protest, photo Matt Dobson

Socialist Party Scotland members on the Glasgow protest, photo Matt Dobson   (Click to enlarge)

Matt Dobson, Socialist Party Scotland

After large-scale protests, including legal challenges and activists preparing to occupy properties against evictions and lock changes, multinational company Serco has been forced to grant a temporary halt to plans to evict refugees in Glasgow.

Serco now says: "In order to facilitate the path of a legal adjudication, Serco will extend the notice period by 21 days for the six people currently subject to lock-change notices.

"We will also pause all further lock-change notices to other asylum seekers who have received negative decisions while the law is being tested and clarified.

This will also give stakeholders who support asylum seekers more time to prepare for what is likely to be an increase in the number of people seeking their help."

The retreat by Serco is partly in response to legal challenges by Govan Law Centre but is also as a result of the political pressure of working class people, youth and trade unionists who have protested in Glasgow and, organised by the Refugee Rights Campaign, outside Serco headquarters in London.

If Serco had persisted with the lock changes scheduled for 6 August, they would have found that close to a thousand people had committed to physically block evictions in Glasgow.

On 4 August, a protest of 300 gathered outside the Home Office in Glasgow and burned Serco eviction notices.

This was after two of the threatened Afghan refugees went on hunger strike outside the building. One of them is tragically stateless, growing up in Scotland after being born in a refugee camp in Pakistan, whose government says he cannot return. The previous day police in Scotland had also brutally arrested protesters.

Speakers at the rally included Brian Smith, secretary of Glasgow City Unison and a Socialist Party Scotland member, who brought solidarity from council workers.

Brian called for the public contract with Serco to be ended and housing services for asylum seekers to be brought back into the public sector.

He also called for a united working class struggle for decent jobs and homes for all and for an international socialist solution to the capitalist crisis.

Socialist Party Scotland activists in Glasgow have been active in this campaign. We have helped mobilise trade union support from PCS and Unison.

London solidarity protest, photo Tamil Solidairty

London solidarity protest, photo Tamil Solidairty   (Click to enlarge)

Step up campaign

We call on all activists to use the next 21 days to step up the campaign to defend refugees from evictions, including, where needed, the tactic of occupation.

We support the demands raised by the refugee support organisations that housing associations refuse to cooperate with Serco and refuse permission to change 'fixtures and fittings'.

Housing associations and the council should immediately draw up temporary tenancies with the refugees to prevent them having to move.

This fight must be linked to a wider, united struggle in the city against cuts and austerity. Refugees face eviction now but many of the city's tenants face rising rent arrears and the threat of homelessness with the roll out of Universal Credit in Glasgow from September.

This crisis starkly shows it's time that elected politicians, including in the Glasgow SNP-led council, stand up and fight the Tories by setting a no-cuts budget and demanding more funding for the city.

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In The Socialist 8 August 2018:


What we think

Corbyn must end false unity with Labour's right


Socialist Party news and analysis

Birmingham home carers strike

Northants Council in total collapse: for a citizens' assembly to draw up a 'needs budget'

Rents soar 60% faster than pay - while spivs plan luxury homes on Green Belt

Tax-dodging tech bosses make billons ... while 6m workers fear the scrapheap

No to Tory plans for radioactive waste under national parks

Them & us


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

The fight against Labour's Blairites and TUSC's role now


Workplace news and analysis

NHS workers angry at reality of mis-sold 'pay rise'

Government fails to deliver on funding and teachers' pay - demand action to win 5%

PCS union: break the pay cap - the fight continues!

Kirklees bin workers' strike forces management back

Ministry of Justice workers angry at barrage of attacks

Take on probation privatisation with union action

Bournemouth train guards' RMT strike

London cleaners' coordinated strike


International socialist news and analysis

Israel - Protest rally against the Nationality Law

Deadly fires ravage Greece: austerity contributed to high loss of life and property

Striking Portuguese dockers show the way forward


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

A mass campaign and trade union organisation can defeat the far-right FLA

Protests win temporary halt to refugee evictions in Glasgow

Why I joined: "I saw the need for Corbyn to stand against the right"

Shropshire NHS - fight the cuts to our services!

Tolpuddle festival: combative trade unionism and anticipation of general election

Trade unions mobilise against EDL in Worcester


Opinion

A must-read for anyone fighting NHS cuts

The Socialist inbox


 

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Related links:

Glasgow:

triangleCardiff Central Socialist Party: Lessons from the Glasgow equal pay strike

triangleEqual pay uprising shows power of working class

triangleCouncil workers - historic strike for equal pay

triangle8,000 Glasgow workers plan historic mass strike

triangleGlasgow workers striking for equal pay

Refugee:

triangleJoin the fight for refugee rights

triangleStop the Serco evictions - Fight for refugee rights

triangleSalford Socialist Party: Immigration, refugee crisis and right wing populism

Evictions:

triangleHomelessness, Universal Credit misery, high rents, cramped flats, isolated estates...end the housing crisis!

triangleHousing crisis: Corbyn's positive measures blanked by Labour's right

triangleHomelessness and evictions soar under the Tories

Scotland:

triangleNHS Tayside facing massive job cuts

triangleShocking new data on declining life expectancy

Refugees:

triangleCaerphilly & RCT Socialist Party: Refugees and Immigration - a socialist policy

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