Party Notes

29th June 2015


SIGN UP NOW FOR MARXISM 2015 AT http://marxismfestival.org.uk/ — AND ASK EVERYONE YOU KNOW TO COME

All roads lead to Marxism 2015
IT’S JUST over a week until Marxism 2015 starts. Think of all the political issues that are crowding in—Greece, anti-austerity after the People’s Assembly demonstration, anti-migrant racism, the role of imperialism in creating ISIS, Islamophobia, how should the left organise, ideas for the struggle.

All of these, and much more, will be debated at M2015. If you haven’t already done so, book now at
www.marxismfestival.org.uk or call the Marxism office on 020 7819 1190.

Obviously we want as many people as possible to come to the whole event, but day tickets are available as are tickets for the crucial debate on Syriza between Stathis Kouvelakis and Alex Callinicos. The meetings on Greece will be very attractive to “seal the deal” with anyone who’s not yet signed up.

Greece: This is the crucial moment as the power of the unelected bosses, bankers and the EU bears down on to impose austerity. It is a classic demonstration of how power does not ultimately lie in parliament.

1. A leaflet and poster are attached. Use everywhere.

2. Call/join the solidarity demos—if there is a demo already called in your area be part of it. If there isn’t one, then call it for Friday 5.30pm or Saturday.
Tonight in London the Greek Solidarity Campaign has called a No to Austerity demo, Yes to democracy demo at 6pm in Trafalgar Square (by National Gallery). This is backed by the TUC, Green Party etc. Be there if you can!

3. Discuss Greece in the first or second half of your meeting this week. Link it firmly to how we build Marxism.

Following up the PA demo:

1. Build People’s Assemblies everywhere: we need a PA in every town and city. If there is one in your area, get centrally involved in it. If there isn’t one, set one up with the people who marched on 20 June and all those who have been or want to be involved in anti-austerity networks.

We are going with the stream over this. One leading figure in the PA said on Saturday with reference to London, “We need People’s Assemblies everywhere, maybe a PA for every Tube station”. There is a London PA organising meeting on Thursday, 6.30pm, NUT HQ. If you are going please contact markt@swp.org.uk

2. Protest on Wednesday 8 July when George Osborne announces his emergency budget. Events are already announced in:
Birmingham 8 July: Protest 5pm, Waterstones, Bristol 8 July, Protest 5:30pm, The Fountains; Cardiff 8 July, Protest 5.30pm, Cardiff Castle; Derby 8 July, Protest 5.30pm, Broadgate; Hull 8 July, Lobby 9am, Rally 12pm,Hull Guildhall Steps; Leeds 8 July, 5pm, City Square, Leeds; London 8 July, Protest 5.30pm, Parliament; Manchester 8 July, Protest 5pm, Market Street; Newcastle 7 July, Protest 5pm, Grey's Monument ; Newport 8 July, Protest 5.30pm, Westgate Square; Nottingham 8 July, protest 5pm, Brian Clough Statue; Oxford 8 July, Protest 6pm, Carfax Tower; Sunderland 8 July, Protest 5pm, Park Lane; York 8 July, 5.30pm, Parliament St
For details and updates go to http://www.thepeoplesassembly.org.uk/protest_osborne_s_emergency_budget
Make sure there is a protest in your area. Contact others involved in the PA, organise it now and spread the word far and wide.

3. Demonstrate at the Tory Party conference, Manchester, Sunday 4 October, followed by week of action. This is now a TUC demonstration! For details go to http://tinyurl.com/nebtet6 It will be a major focus. Coaches are already being booked.

TUC backing means we can push for funding from the unions and trade councils. Make sure the transport is for everyone, not just a particular union’s members. This is a demo for everyone, but in particular we can win huge turnouts from Northern England—and Scotland too!

Marxism 2015—ten days to go!
Marxism 2015: Ideas for revolution
A five day political festival: 9-13 July, Central London
Book www.marxismfestival.org.uk. Just over a week to go!
New meetings:
Marxism Festival is very pleased to announce that Diane Abbott MP will speak alongside Sabby Dhalu and Weyman Bennett (joint secs for UAF, pc) on Tackling the Racist Offensive on Sat 11 July, 7pm

Plus Ron Marguiles will be joined by HDP MP Sebahat Tuncel to discuss “After Kobane and the general election: where now for Turkey and the Kurds” now changed to Sat 11 July, 7pm

Gareth Peirce and Mike McColgan from the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign will discuss “Orgreave: the search for the truth” Sun 12 July, 3.45pm

Plus Nicola Field and Gethin Roberts, original members of LGSM will discuss the story behind Pride on Sun 12 July, 7pm. And if you missed Pride at the cinemas there is chance to watch the film afterwards.

The crisis in Greece poses sharp questions for the left.
Don’t miss our special debate: Syriza in power: Whither Greece? With Alex Callinicos and Stathis Kouvelakis

Plus Panos Garganas will join the Marxism opening rally on Thurs 9 July at 7pm and Maria Styllou will speak alongside Richard Boyd Barrett and Christine Buccholz on “Fighting the Troika and austerity across Europe”

Paul McGarr will open up debate and discussion about how socialists should vote in the EU referendum. Please note this meeting has now changed to Sat 11 July, at 3.45pm
• Follow up every contact from the People’s Assembly Demo asap as well as other activists in your area
• Ring every member and non member you know
• Ring every member and non member who has booked for Marxism to check on practicalities.

Please note:
• It is cheaper to book in advance. All tickets on the door are more expensive. Advance sales will end at 5pm Wed 8 July. After this tickets will have to be bought at the Box Office.
• All tickets booked before midnight Thurs 2 July will be sent out through the post. Tickets booked after this time will need to be collected at the Marxism Box Office in the Institute of Education. So avoid the queues at the Box Office and book up before then.
• All accommodation requests from now will be placed in a community centre.

Keep building Marxism and pushing out
This is a big week for bookings for Marxism. Last year we got over 250 bookings in the last two weeks. But this is not automatic – make sure you carry on building Marxism to ensure it is as big as possible. With just over one week to go districts outside of London need to chase up every contact, new member or student so that practicalities can be arranged. London districts need to think big. Poster your area, get publicity into shops, cafes and bars. Set up ring rounds of new members, members who pay subs and non members who came last year plus new contacts.

Last week a London teacher got his NUT branch to pass a motion for Marxism and fund 5 teachers to go. Five people at the meeting immediately signed up.

We have a special flyers to advertise the meeting on Turkey and the Kurds plus posters highlighting the anti racism meetings and Diane Abbott.

• Districts that have now booked up the same or more people than last year: Doncaster, Glasgow, York, East Devon, Somerset and Dorset, Portsmouth, Chesterfield, Essex, Lancashire, Black Country, Tyneside, Sheffield, Cardiff, Plymouth and Cornwall, Barnsley, Rest of Scotland, Merseyside, and Nottingham.

Don’t forget students
There is still time to go to your local 6th form. Not all students have finished. Build for the demo and Marxism together. Again follow up any contacts straight away.

Strikers’ Rate – we are offering a special rate for Marxism for anyone on strike – please use the attached flyer on all picket lines

Stalls and crèche at Marxism 2015
We ask every comrade to help in some way at Marxism to enable to smooth running of the event. Please check out the attached stall rota and an updated crèche rota. Please get names of comrades who can help on an SWP stall to Ben in circulation and names for those helping with the crèche to Antony on amth4@hotmail.co.uk

Picnics at Marxism 2015
Every district needs to make sure there is a pic nic set up for lunch time and in the evening break. This is crucial in making sure those on low incomes can eat at Marxism but also means activists and members can come together at Marxism. It needs to be organized in advance with comrades taking responsibility for each meal time. Why not do what Leeds is doing and bring your own gazebo and tables for it. There is plenty of room on the grassy areas around the Institute of Education. Districts should decide where they will have their picnic and make sure everyone knows. Make posters to advertise it at Marxism.

Transport and other practicalities – ring every person who has booked this week
The Marxism Organiser and Branch Secretary in every branch should ring everyone booked for Marxism to check how they are getting there. Unless we do this there may be some people who don’t end up coming. Plus check if their accommodation is sorted and if they know where to meet comrades at Marxism. We will send full lists of bookings out to each district this week.

• Fundraising for Marxism 2015
In order to ensure that students, unemployed, those on benefits, low paid workers and asylum seekers to come and participate in Marxism every branch and district needs to think about money for travel, food and other things that are needed in London. Every area should have a fundraising event to make sure that people can be supported at Marxism. Why not hold a BBQ and charge for food or drink? Or a curry night? Please let us know any planned event. If your district can make a contribution to the cost of Marxism please let us know – this will help cover our costs.

• Accommodation at Marxism 2015: have you got any room at all?
In order to enable people to attend Marxism from around the country (and indeed the world) comrades very generously open up their houses to provide space for people to stay. Without this we could not run Marxism in the way that we do. Thank you to all comrades who have already said they can accommodate someone.
Although we book community centres where many people will stay – this is not appropriate for older people, or those with specific requirements.
Please note the deadline for accommodation for those with specific requirements has now gone. Any accommodation requests will now be in the community centre.
We desperately need more spaces – please let us know if you have any space at al – be it a bed, sofa or floor space. Email Sarah at sarahb@swp.org.uk or call 020 7819 1190

No anti-union laws, UTR forum THIS THURSDAY
Defend our unions – Build solidarity now, Unite the Resistance this Thursday, 2 July, 6.30pm, The Venue, Student central (previously ULU), Malet Street, WC1E 7HY.

This is an important event that we want to fight to make as big as possible. Tory plans for new anti-union laws have been at the centre of debates at trade union conferences this year. Britain already has some of the most draconian anti-union legislation in western Europe.

Now Cameron plans to introduce new ballot thresholds, curbs on the right to picket and restrictions on the unions’ right to fund political parties.

Several union conferences have backed calls for protests at parliament when legislation is put forward.
Thursday’s meeting is a part of the debate about how our movement can respond to this latest round of attacks on our right to strike in the face of austerity.
Speakers include PCS General secretary Mark Serwotka, John McDonnell MP, Chris Stephens MP (SNP), NUJ General Secretary Michelle Stanistreet, Green Party Deputy leader Amelia Womack, Dave Smith (author of Blacklisted), National President of BFAWU Ian Hodson, sacked National gallery rep Candy Udwin and Sean Vernell from Unite the Resistance.

Glasgow Homelessness Caseworkers, Barnet and Bromley strikers, the London Underground dispute and DPAC’s Paula Peters will also be attending.

The event starts at 6.30pm, The Venue, Student Central (ULU), Malet Street, WC1E 7HY. You can download the latest leaflet at http://uniteresist.org/2015/06/latest-line-up-and-colour-leaflet-for-def
Branch meetings in London are cancelled on Thursday 2 July because of this meeting. Those on 1 July will go ahead.

New Socialist Review out this week
Time to get organised! The summer issue of Socialist Review leads on strategies to fight the anti-trade union laws.

Plus an in-depth interview with Ewa and Rafel, activists from the Unite Hotel Workers Branch, who talk about the difficulties of organising in the hotel industry - and how they get round them. And John Newsinger gives a taster of his new book, Them And Us: Fighting the class war 1910-1939.

Also in this issue Joseph Choonara on the EU referendum, Susan Rosenthal on how Freud sold out, Noel Halifax on how gay liberation and Black Power came from the same streets, plus columns on A to B marches, Caitlyn Jenner, students and sex work, plus a bumper book reviews section and arts.

Copies will be sent out with the papers and to subscribers this week. Please send in any outstanding money for the June issue and let us know if you want extra copies. office@socialistreview.org.uk or 020 7819 1176.

Demonstrate against the fascists
On Saturday 4 July, a group of hardcore Nazis is planning an anti-Semitic demonstration in Golders Green, which has a substantial Jewish population. UAF has called a counter-mobilisation at 12 noon at Golders Green. Go to www.facebook.com/events/1605505026359940/

Also on Saturday 4 July, antifascists will be mobilising in Sheffield against the English Defence League.

Prides
Pride in London was great. For SW report go to http://tinyurl.com/nv3faqz The highlight was LGSM marching at the head of the unions’ block. But in many parts of the demo there was a tremendous spirit of resistance and anti-commercialism—and lots of young people putting the politics back into Pride. Make sure you are at your local Pride.
Warwickshire Pride 2015 Saturday 4 July; Newcastle Pride 2015 Saturday 18 July; Hull Pride 2015 Saturday 18 July
Stoke Pride Saturday 18 July; Norwich Gay Pride 2015 Saturday 25 July; Chesterfield Pride 2015 Sunday 26 July; Brighton Pride Saturday 1 August; Liverpool Gay Pride 2015 Saturday 1 August ; Leeds Gay Pride 2015 Sunday 2 August

No to privatisation, defend Candy Udwin
Day of action for Candy Udwin Thursday 2 July
After playing a central role on the trade union section of Pride alongside LGSM, National Gallery strikers continue their action this week from Tuesday 30 June to Thursday 2 July (picket lines 9-11am every day at the gallery).

There is a day of action for the reinstatement of Candy Udwin on Thursday this week. Everyone who can should try to do something on 2 July to back Candy’s fight for reinstatement. Can you take a collection in your workplace for the National Gallery strikers on Thursday?

Can you get a support photo from your workplace with the “Reinstate Candy” posters? Download the poster at http://uniteresist.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Reinstate-Candy-Udwin-...
The latest collection sheet for the National gallery is attached.
To make a donation go to
https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=KYY

Tube strike can be a major focus
Strike announced on London Tube 8-9 July
Drivers in the ASLEF union on London’s Tube have voted by over 97 percent (on an 81 percent turnout) to strike against London Underground’s decision to push through new night-shift and weekend rosters without extra payment.

A 24-hour strike starts at 9.30pm on Wednesday 8 July. RMT members are voting too and the ballot finishes tomorrow.

If the strikes go ahead then the capital will grind to a halt from early evening, on the day when protests will be taking place against Osborne’s austerity budget.

Everyone in London can raise solidarity with the Tube strikes. A support petition will be out later this week.

SWP branches should discuss this week how they can bring support and solidarity to the picket lines on 8-9 July.

Outside London, comrades should raise solidarity for the strike in every union branch and workplace, doing collections, sending messages of support, getting people together on the day for “solidarity selfie” pictures etc.

SW sales
In Manchester/Levenshulme, a comrade reports: we sold 36 SWs on the Stockport demo against austerity on Saturday, and another 16 on a protest against Tory housing minister last Thursday.

In Cardiff, a comrade writes: “We had a great sale today on the back of the positive mood from the People’s Assembly demo. We sold 32 papers and two reviews. We got ten people on the sale including two new members and their friend who came on the demo last week and joined”.

In Oxford, a comrade writes: “We had a good sale in Oxford petitioning in support of the porters at the Oxford JR Hospital who are balloting for strike action because of a vicious attack on their pay and conditions. We sold 21 papers”.
I
n Inverness, a comrade writes: “We sold 25 papers on a 250+ demo and gave away 100s of Marxism timetables. They were the first papers ever on a demo in Inverness. It was a great day out”.

Comrades sold 120 SWs on London Pride, 35 at TUC LGBT conference, and 25 at the “Dangerous Times” conference.

Day of action against benefit cuts & bedroom tax
Osborne’s emergency budget on 8 July will announce where the axe will fall on the £12 billion of benefit cuts. As well as protests on the day called by the Peoples’ Assembly, last weekend’s Tenants and Housing summit in London, called for a national day of action on Sat 25 July against what will be devastating cuts and the bedroom tax. We should contact bedroom tax activists, local DPAC supporters and ask the local People’s Assembly to back it. Go for local protests, mass leafleting with megaphones etc

Workplace Notes
Mid-Cheshire, Barnsley and Bradford colleges to strike to save jobs Following strikes across London last week, UCU members at Mid-Cheshire, Barnsley and Bradford FE colleges will strike against job cuts tomorrow, 30 June.
Send messages of support to: Mid-Cheshire daztol@yahoo.co.uk; Barnsley College lee.short1975@gmail.com Bradford College g.evans@bradfordcollege.ac.uk

Lobby LMU governors against job cuts, Thursday 2 July
After strikes by Unison and UCU members, staff and students at London Met will be lobbying the university board of governors on Thursday 2 July at the Tower Building, Holloway Road, 4.30-6pm.

Glasgow Homeless Caseworkers On Saturday Unison members from the Glasgow Homelessness caseworkers strike joined National Gallery strikers on London’s Pride.
Send messages of solidarity and invite a striker to speak at a trade union or campaign meeting enquiries@glasgowcityunison.co.uk
Donate to the strike fund: Unity Bank, Sort code 08-60-01, Account number 20275792, Account name “Industrial Action—Income”.

Solidarity with Ninewells NHS porters: With real progress being made by Unite members (see this week’s Socialist Worker) now’s the time to up the level of support for the Dundee NHS porters. To make a donation send cheques to: Porters Strike Fund, Unite Office, 110 Blackness Road, Dundee, DD1 5PB, cheques made payable to Unite. Facebook Support Ninewells Porters

Support Robert O’Donnell The SECC (Glasgow venue for several union conferences this year), is 91 percent owned by Glasgow City Council and has refused to recognise trade unions. Now it has sacked union member Robert O’Donnell. Send protest emails. Details at http://tinyurl.com/qgbcfwe

NUJ Newsquest strike continues The NUJ chapel at Newsquest titles in south London has called a 12-day strike over redundancies, staffing levels and pay. The strikes continue until 23.59 on Wednesday 1 July. PICKET LINE: The Quadrant, Sutton, Surrey SM2 5AS (Very near Sutton train station).