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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 March 2021

PCS elections: increased support for Broad Left Network

Marion Lloyd, photo Mary Finch, photo Mary Finch

Marion Lloyd, photo Mary Finch, photo Mary Finch   (Click to enlarge)

Katrine Williams, PCS DWP group vice president (personal capacity)

Nominations for the PCS union president and national executive elections closed on 11 March. Details of branch nominations have now been published and these show increased support for the Broad Left Network - left rank-and-file group supported by Socialist Party members.

The Broad Left Network presidential candidate, Socialist Party member Marion Lloyd, received 42 nominations from all parts of the union. Incumbent president Fran Heathcote received 70 nominations and the other candidate Bev Laidlaw 19.

The 2020 PCS elections were cancelled at the nominations stage - a decision which Broad Left Network supporters opposed. The 42 nominations secured by Marion Lloyd this year is an increase on her 2020 total of 40. This contrasts with nominations for her opponents which have not increased.

From the nominations, both in terms of the number and spread across the union's membership groups, it is clear that Marion Lloyd is the candidate best placed to challenge Heathcote. It is also clear that her increased nominations reflect a mood in the union for a fresh approach - for a leadership that gives members the confidence and the means to fight on the issues that matter to them.

We call upon activists to unite behind Marion's candidacy and the full Broad Left Network slate for a union democratically controlled through its elected lay structures, and a leadership which will actively coordinate across the union our fight on Covid-19 safety, pay, jobs, pensions and office closures.

The PCS postal ballot for president and national executive opens Thursday 22 April and closes Thursday 13 May.

Support Marion Lloyd for PCS president. Support the Broad Left Network-supported slate of candidates for the PCS national executive. For more information see pcsbln.wordpress.com.

Stop press: DVLA workers four-day strike

At a Zoom meeting held on 18 March, PCS members at the DVLA voted by 96% for a four-day strike commencing on 6 April. This comes not a moment too soon, with reports from members at the DVLA contact centre in Swansea that the NHS app is starting to ping again, threatening another Covid-19 outbreak unless urgent action is taken. It was at the contact centre that a major outbreak affecting over 300 staff (a third of the contact centre workforce) took place in December.

The PCS leadership has now indicated that, alongside the industrial action, they will invoke Section 44 on behalf of strikers. This is a complete U-turn from their previous position when they argued that Section 44 could only be used individually. Broad Left Network members have consistently argued that the national executive committee should give a lead and use Section 44 on a collective basis.

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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.
  • 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 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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Related links:

Elections:

triangleCWU elections: Vote for a fighting, campaigning, socialist EC member

trianglePCS elections - incumbents win, but solid vote for Broad Left Network

triangleSocialist Party national meeting: Perspectives for socialism after the elections

triangleRight-wing Partido Popular wins Madrid elections - a warning to the working class

triangleTUSC is back

PCS:

triangleConference 2021: Divide between union leaders and rank-and-file exposed

triangleFight for a socialist leadership in PCS, build a fighting, democratic union!

triangleUnison & PCS conferences Socialist Party fringe meeting

triangleDVLA workers suspend strike for talks

Union:

triangleUnite general secretary contest: Vote for Sharon Graham

triangleRedbridge school walkout over victimised union rep

triangleLeft candidate needed for Unite general secretary election

DVLA:

trianglePCS members at Swansea DVLA to strike for safety

triangleOnline workers' rally: Taking fight to the bosses

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