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Posted on 28 May 2021 at 16:29 GMT

Waltham Forest byelections: Council homes not unaffordable flats

Vote TUSC and Independent on 10 June

Socialist Party member Kevin Parslow addressing the 2019 trade union councils' congress, photo Iain Dalton

Socialist Party member Kevin Parslow addressing the 2019 trade union councils' congress, photo Iain Dalton   (Click to enlarge)

A byelection has been called on 10 June for the Grove Green ward of the London Borough of Waltham Forest.

Socialist Party member Kevin Parslow is the candidate for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC).

We are campaigning against council cuts and the selling-off of public land to private developers for unaffordable flats in monster blocks. Around three quarters of Grove Green residents rent accommodation. Half of residents are privately renting.

Multi-occupation is high, so the need for genuinely affordable council housing is an issue here. And TUSC campaigns for the council to bring in rent control.

With two primary schools in the ward, education is important too. We have had parents queueing for leaflets outside them, with one or two asking for more information or wanting to join an online meeting.

A TUSC councillor would oppose all cuts, and propose that the council link up with other Labour-led councils to fight for extra funding from the Tory government, with the backing of residents. A TUSC councillor would put forward a people's budget for Waltham Forest - a budget that meets our needs, that creates jobs on decent pay, and provides the services we need.

This is a rocky government that could be shaken by a mass movement of workers and their families.

The Socialist Party is also supporting independent candidate Claire Weiss in the Lea Bridge ward byelection on the same day. Claire, a local campaigner, is standing against unsustainable development in the ward, including on areas adjacent to the river Lea flood plain.

We've sold the Socialist at the two stations on the edge of the ward. We always find a number of people ready to hear socialist ideas.

What would be the point of electing another Labour councillor to do nothing for working-class people in the ward, and the borough as a whole?

Waltham Forest Socialist Party members

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 28 May 2021 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

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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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