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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 March 2021

Preparing to organise workers in Enfield

Socialist Party members, NSSN supporters and others protesting in central London on Budget Day, 11 March 2020

Socialist Party members, NSSN supporters and others protesting in central London on Budget Day, 11 March 2020   (Click to enlarge)

Josh Asker, North London Socialist Party

The National Shop Stewards Network in Enfield hosted an online meeting on 22 March. It brought together 24 trade unionists to discuss how to organise workers in the London borough.

Figures show that 40% of workers in Enfield earn less than the London living wage of 10.85 an hour. Arif Bektas, speaking for the Turkish and Kurdish organisation Day-mer, estimated there are 10,000 workers from that background in the borough, many earning poverty wages.

Day-mer is in the process of working with Unite the Union in North London to organise these workers. Onay Kasab from Unite listed recent victories of workers in London, including Hackney parking wardens and school cleaners winning the London living wage through collective action.

The meeting heard from transport workers in London: RMT underground worker Lewis Peacock outlined Labour mayor Sadiq Khan's planned attacks on workers, and victimised bus driver and Unite rep Moe Manir explained the bus workers' struggle for safety during the pandemic.

Workers in the public sector also spoke. Kathy Smith, who helped to organise Unite workers win their eight month strike in Bromley libraries, explained the need for local authority workers to coordinate action with health workers on the issue of pay, as well as to defend services.

Many of the trade unionists in the meeting are preparing to stand as candidates for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition in this May's elections on the London list for the Greater London Assembly (GLA), and in Enfield's by-elections. The point was made that workers' industrial struggle would be strengthened by a force in the councils and the GLA standing up for the working class.

Speakers reaffirmed their commitment to build the trade unions in Enfield, by organising the currently unorganised, and to forge links between existing trade union branches with the aspiration of establishing an Enfield trade union council.

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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.

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In The Socialist 24 March 2021:


Protest

Protesting is not a crime

Defying the anti-protest restrictions

Police attempt to silence mothers

Police invade student homes


NHS

NHS pay: 15% now

Fighting NHS privatisation

Haringey: Hands off our GP practices


Elections

Battle for a fighting, anti-austerity Liverpool mayor

Why I am standing for TUSC

Help fund the Socialist Party's stand as part of TUSC


Fighting Sexual Harassment

Fighting sexual harassment and gender violence on campus

Justice for Blessing Olusegun

Film Review: Moxie


Paris Commune 150 Years

150th anniversary of the Paris Commune


2011 Pensions Strike

Lessons of the 2011 pensions strike: when workers showed their power


Workplace News

PCS elections: increased support for Broad Left Network

Engineering workers strike against 'fire and rehire' in Leicester

'Sleep-ins' ruling must lead to a huge campaign for social care workers' rights

Shrewsbury Pickets win: Convictions overturned

Sparks continue protests against deskilling

Beal High school strike as management refuse to negotiate over fair sick pay scheme

Preparing to organise workers in Enfield

Support victimised bus driver reps and Socialist Party members Declan and Moe

Goodlord workers continue all-out strike


Campaigns

Save John Carroll - fight is far from over!

Stop evictions and drop the debts

Online meeting - Ending violence against women, the socialist approach

Socialist Party regional conferences meet online


Readers' Opinion

The Socialist Inbox


 

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