Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1078/30451
Socialist Students speaking tour - students and workers unite to fightback
Theo Sharieff, Socialist Students national organiser
The first week of the Socialist Students national speaking tour has been a massive success - bringing together students, workers and trade union members both on and off campus.
The coronavirus crisis threatens to prompt university management to launch a new round of austerity attacks.
The meetings have featured wide- ranging discussion on how students and workers can fight further government cuts and defend students' right to organise on campus.
University campuses are in chaos, as a result of years of Tory driven cuts and marketisaton.
Staff face spiralling workload and attacks on pay and pensions. Students face overcrowded lectures and libraries, extortionate rents, cuts and 'centralisation' of student services.
At Southampton University, the University and College Union (UCU) co-hosted one if its weekly teach outs alongside Socialist Students. We discussed building student solidarity with the campus strikes.
Swansea Trade Union Council sponsored Socialist Students' meeting on campus. The branch secretary of public sector union Unison in Camarthenshire spoke about the importance of joining a trade union and the need to build a united student and worker fightback.
In Leeds, students gathered to hear speakers from Socialist Students the UCU and transport union RMT. The latter faces a huge battle against Tory attacks on the right of rail workers to strike.
These meetings are a very important opportunity for students and workers to discuss the ideas and methods necessary to defeat Tory austerity.
Donate to the Socialist Party
Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal
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.
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 click here to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.
- Click here to read our full appeal statement
- Click here for our coronavirus articles and reports
- Click here to join the Socialist Party
In The Socialist 18 March 2020:
Workplace news and analysis
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns