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From The Socialist newspaper, 10 June 2020

As a health worker, I had to march against racism

Outside the US embassy, London, 7.6.20, photo JB

Outside the US embassy, London, 7.6.20, photo JB   (Click to enlarge)

Maggie Fricker, Southampton Socialist Party

Like all health workers, coronavirus has dominated my life. We've been concerned to see people returning to crowded workplaces, beaches and beauty spots.

But we've also felt the anger over the murder of George Floyd. I had to attend the Black Lives Matter rally in Southampton.

My 'daily walk' was joined by hundreds of young people - not of my household but of my class. Although most of us wore masks, social distancing became impossible.

Discussing with some of my colleagues, feelings were very mixed. The importance of following the rules to save lives was uppermost, "unless you're rich or a friend of Boris Johnson", one commented.

People told stories of being stopped by the police on the way home from the hospital, when white colleagues were left unmolested.

People have lost faith in the government rules, and more are beginning to see the rottenness of the whole capitalism system. People aren't just dying from Covid-19.

The fightback on the streets has started and people's anger is spilling over. We must be there to listen, to discuss and to give a way forward - to fight for socialist ideas against this system.

We need to find ways of doing this safely, with social distancing, and face coverings. But small campaign stalls and leaflets are essential during this period. Opposition to the brutality of capitalism and government failure must be organised openly.

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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 10 June 2020:


Black Lives Matter

Fight racism and class inequality. "Seize the time!"

Black Lives Matter protests sweep country: How can the movement win?

Mass protests erupt

Black and white youth rise up against racism - US protester speaks to the Socialist

Capitalism = racism: "You fight capitalism with socialism"

"We're going to fight racism and capitalism with socialism"

France: 20,000 rally against Paris's killer gendarmes

Socialists call for trade unions to join the fight


Schools

Tories backtrack in England - Stand firm for school safety

Oppose the Welsh government's reckless return to school plan


Workplace news

Non-essential retail to open - Organise at work

Debenhams: Workers made to pay for Covid-19 crisis

Workers' union and campaign group fights Derby Rolls-Royce job cuts

Homerton Hospital - withdraw private contract


News

Test-and-trace fiasco - the ringing of the cash till

Coronavirus pandemic news in brief

BAME coronavirus deaths - an indictment of capitalist inequality


Lessons from history

Roosevelt's New Deal programme - reforms to save capitalism


Obituary

Ken Douglas: A tireless and determined fighter for socialism


Campaigns and reports

Why we joined the Socialist Party

Donate so we can raise our socialist message

Domestic violence murder


Readers' opinion

As a health worker, I had to march against racism

Readers' opinion: Things will never be the same


 

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Related links:

Black Lives Matter:

triangleJustice for Mohamud Hassan!

trianglePolice use Covid laws to intimidate BLM protesters

triangleNo to Tories' new anti-protest law

triangleRace disparity gets worse - fight to improve living standards for all

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triangleTV review: Red, White and Blue

triangleMangrove: When the black community made a stand against state racism

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

triangleBAME Covid deaths due to capitalist inequality, confirms government

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triangleVaccine confidence - a worker's response

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triangleNHS Emergency - Fight for a fully funded, publicly owned, socialist NHS

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triangleNew Cross Gate fire 40 years ago

Government:

triangleNews in Brief

Capitalism:

triangleUSA in crisis - the need for a socialist alternative

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