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The latest news and analysis from SF locals

Organising in the Workplace with SolFed

This past weekend saw a number of members of the North London Local of the Solidarity Federation travel to lovely Brighton to attend a day-long SolFed workplace organiser training hosted by the Brighton Solidarity Federation.  The training, which focuses heavily on the practicalities of organising at work, not only gave us the chance to network with other SolFedders and interested workplace militants, but to have strategic conversations about establishing an organising committee in each of our workplaces.  We look forward to keeping in touch and putting the training to good use.  Bosses beware!

If you're interested in getting trained up, please send an email to training (at) solfed.org.uk

Radical Workers' Bloc on the March For the Alternative

On Saturday 26th March the Trades Union Congress has called for a march against the cuts, and there is going to be a South London feeder march starting at Kennington Park which we will be joining. South London is one of the areas to be hardest hit by the cuts and has seen some of the most inspiring resistance to their implementation with the storming and occupying of town halls, the occupying of libraries and university buildings along with large demonstrations and regular small actions.

Protests and disruption at Liverpool Town Hall

Members of Liverpool Solidarity Federation were amongst the crowd of 300 people who gathered outside Liverpool Town Hall to protest as the council set its austerity budget. With £91m of cuts on the table, local people and community campaigns - including the Park View Project to rehabilitate alcoholics and the Whitechapel Centre for the homeless as well as more than a few nurseries and SureStart centres - joined activists and campaigners to make the council hear their message.

At first, people huddled on the pavement on both sides of the road. Spirits were high and there was a lot of shouting and chanting, but it wasn't until one woman walked into the road with a banner and everybody else joined in that things really kicked off. This buoyed everybody's spirits even further and there was a mood of defiance in the air.

Drumming on the doors at Hackney cuts protest

After a slow start, protesters at a March 2nd demonstration in Hackney against Labour council budget cuts made their voices heard with a drive for the doors which temporarily saw panic in police lines amid chants of "let us in" and "it's your jobs next."

The night had started off slowly, with barely 50 people hitting the pavement outside the council's Mare Street headquarters as the cuts discussion and vote, widely seen as a rubber-stamping of government funding plans, went through.

But numbers grew as the evening got colder until around 200 people were stood outside the heavily-fortified building. Police picketed every door with at least three full riot vans on standby and barriers adorned the main entrance in a nod to events which saw Camden and Lewisham councils browbeaten by their subjects late last month.

Protest in Newham

Members of NLSF from east London took part in the march against cuts in Newham being imposed by a Labour-run council.

Around 150 people marched on the last day of February in the cold and rain to voice their opposition to local cuts, of which £100million were voted through at the council meeting.[1] This means the loss of thousands of public sector jobs, community centre closures, cuts in the voluntary sector and care for the elderly.

Newham against the cuts is an independent anti-cuts group, but many of the leftists present seemed hopelessly stuck in the 1980s, shouting against the 'Tory Cuts!' and maintaining a stifling and defeatist attitude, even sticking to the pavements so as not to disrupt the traffic.

Disruption in Brent Town Hall

Feb 28th saw about 200 activists and militants gather outside Brent Town Hall to voice their anger at Brent councillors’ imminent decision to cut public spending in the borough even further. Called by the local trades council, the protest began with public speakers discussing the implications of the coming attack -- including the severe cuts to Brent Law Centre, support for the disabled, housing, and the closure of libraries.

The protesters mainly consisted of SWPs, 'old' Labour types, Communist Party members, Green Party activists, and a small number of anarchists. This unfortunately set the tone as criticising Labour for "doing the Tories' bidding" -- however one protester's voice was heard to shout "fuck Labour!" in response.

Guides for getting organised

The Stuff Your Boss doesn't want you to know Knowing about the main workplace rights is the first step to getting organised. Find out about your righs at work from here.
The Stuff Your Sexist Boss doesn't want you to know Sexism is present in most workplaces - find out how we can organise to fight back against it!
SF workplace training The Solidarity Federation workplace organiser training programme is designed to give workers the tools and confidence to organise in their workplaces. You may find the direct action based approach we adopt offers a fresh perspective.

Donations

If you would like to support us, you can donate to the Solidarity Federation. You can use your your debit/credit card, or a PayPal account if you have one. Donations will be used to support our work, including our free newspaper Catalyst and our workplace organiser training programme.