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Archive for January 2022

6 January 2022

spotBlair knighted for services to the rich and powerful

Tony Blair has joined current Labour leader Keir Starmer in being knighted, rewarded for his services to the bosses' establishment

6 January 2022

spotTory test shortage failure

There is a shortage of Covid tests. You may have failed to book a pack of seven rapid lateral flow tests (LFTs), and people are struggling to books slots at PCR test centres.

6 January 2022

spotMore fares misery for passengers - renationalise the railways

For many hard-pressed households this Christmas, news of a hefty 3.8% increase in regulated rail fares (the largest rise since 2013) will add to the prospect of a gloomy New Year.

6 January 2022

spotInvergordon posties mutiny

As we go to press, Communication Workers Union (CWU) members in the Royal Mail delivery office in Invergordon, north of Inverness have walked out

6 January 2022

spotStrike threat forces Tesco to improve pay offer

The run up to Christmas is the busiest time of year for retail workers. Despite this, Tesco workers, Usdaw members and other supporters joined an online public meeting on 14 December convened by Usdaw

6 January 2022

spotWest Mids metalworkers strike over pay

Metal workers at Somers Forge in Halesowen made history just before Christmas after taking strike action for the first time in the factory's 155-year history

6 January 2022

spotScunny scaffs enter twelfth week of strike action

Before Christmas, the 60 or so scaffolders who work at British Steel Scunthorpe finished their twelfth week of strike action with a protest demonstration outside the offices of their contractor, Actavo, in Wakefield

6 January 2022

spotNHS Covid staff crisis

The number of NHS trusts which have declared critical incidents because of Covid staff shortages is into double figures and rising

6 January 2022

spotChile's working class delivers a landslide vote against ultra-right Kast

On 19 December 2021 the second round of the presidential election was held in Chile. Gabriel Boric, of the Frente Amplio electoral coalition, obtained an overwhelming victory, winning more than four and

6 January 2022

spotFighting Fund - 162% of target, 162,000 raised

Congratulations to Socialist Party members and supporters for going well over our target for 2021

6 January 2022

spotTUSC appeals for widest possible anti-austerity socialist unity for May elections

Fighting trade unionists, socialists, and working-class community campaigners can offer an anti-austerity alternative at the ballot box

6 January 2022

spotObituary: Kate Jones - 1953-2021

We were saddened to hear of the loss of long-standing Socialist Party member Kate Jones on 20 December. Most recently a member in Swansea, Kate was previously a member in Brighton and Llanelli.

6 January 2022

spotSheffield JustEat couriers escalate dispute

In the week before Christmas, JustEat delivery couriers in Sheffield, employed by Stuart Delivery, extended their targeted strike action to hit four Greggs shops

6 January 2022

spotCoventry: Private profits from hospital parking

At our last Socialist Party campaign stall of the year on 18 December, we gathered more signatures in support of the bin workers' strike.

6 January 2022

spotTrinity Centre: Shameful eviction by Newham council

On 22 December, local groups in Canning Town in east London - tutoring for kids who've fallen out of the school system, a food bank, and religious groups - found their community centre locked up by Newham Council

6 January 2022

spotS. Yorks Stagecoach workers start indefinite strike

Around 560 Stagecoach bus workers in South Yorkshire began an indefinite strike from the start of the New Year

6 January 2022

spotUnion action needed for Covid safety

As we head into a new term, teachers are just as unimpressed by the Department for Education's performance as ever

6 January 2022

spotNew unionism - when mass workers' action changed Britain

In the second of our occasional series on the history of working-class struggle in Britain, Iain Dalton looks at 'new unionism'.

6 January 2022

spotTories' cost of living squeeze - Build workers' fightback

This year is set to inflict more pain on working-class people as rising costs outstrip incomes, meaning real-terms pay cuts. The average pay deal last year was worth just 2%, and a survey of employers found they were only planning 2.5% raises this year.

11 January 2022

spotCorbyn's Peace and Justice Project

The Telegraph has reported that "Jeremy Corbyn is considering establishing his own political party after privately accepting he will never be reinstated as a Labour MP" (9.1 22).

12 January 2022

spotTories concede under cladding pressure but don't go far enough

Tory Housing Minister Michael Gove's recent announcement that he will make the property developers pay for unsafe cladding is in part a response to the scandal that has engulfed the industry post-Grenfell

12 January 2022

spotShameless Johnson partied through lockdown

The proverb 'do as I say, not as I do' could have been written by Tory PM Boris Johnson during the course of the Covid pandemic.

12 January 2022

spotCarmarthenshire gritters take action as Plaid-led council reneges on agreement

Pickets were out for a second day on 6 January at Carmarthenshire County council depots Nantglas, Crosshands, Cillefwr, Carmarthen and Llandovery, in a dispute by gritting crews

12 January 2022

spotJobcentre Coronavirus outbreak leads to reps meeting call

Just before Christmas a number of staff at the Mosley Street Jobcentre in Manchester contracted Coronavirus

12 January 2022

spotSouth Yorkshire bus strikes spreading and getting stronger

After two one-week strikes before Christmas, and now indefinite strike action since the New Year, the South Yorkshire Stagecoach busworkers' strikes are getting stronger

12 January 2022

spotEast Mids rail conductors force concessions, train managers' dispute continues

The long-running senior conductors' dispute on East Midlands Railway (EMR) Intercity is over. RMT members voted to accept management's offer in a ballot on the pay and contract dispute, and on 'multiple

12 January 2022

spotWeetabix workers defeat 'fire and rehire' and ballot on improved pay offer

The end of 2021 saw a ramping up of strike action by the Weetabix workers at Corby and Kettering factories

12 January 2022

spotInvergordon Royal Mail mutiny wins

Communication Workers' Union (CWU) members in the Royal Mail delivery office in Invergordon, north of Inverness are back in work after walking out in support of a temporary worker who had his contract terminated, outside of the agreed industrial relations framework

12 January 2022

spotProtests against BBC transphobia

On 8 January, over 150 people assembled outside the BBC to protest the corporation's treatment of trans people in its reporting.

12 January 2022

spotCommunities fight back against Rio Tinto mine

It is becoming a tradition that the Serbian diaspora meets at the London HQ of Rio Tinto mining company, to coincide with protests in Serbia against opening a lithium mine there.

12 January 2022

spotSolidarity with workers protesting in Kazakhstan

It's clear that the Kazakhstan government is feeling the heat following international coverage of the protests and repression there

12 January 2022

spotNorth London NHS - "It's going to be us who saves it"

The newly formed branch of Unite the Union for Migrant, Food, Retail and Services workers, and Day-Mer, a Turkish and Kurdish community organisation in north London, held a rally outside North Middlesex Hospital on 8 January, with the demand: 'Fund the NHS and keep it public'

12 January 2022

spotSouthampton student vote for online exams must be accepted

Covid cases are surging across university campuses. I've never known this many people who have tested positive.

12 January 2022

spotObituary - Pauline Wall

From Liverpool youth leader to facing down press barons in Bradford: It is with great sadness we heard of the death of Pauline Wall, after a lengthy struggle against cancer

12 January 2022

spotObituary - Ethan Bradley 1993-2021

We need more Ethans to lead fight against gig economy exploitation: At just 28, the loss of Ethan Bradley, the chair of the couriers and logistics branch for the IWGB union, is tragic.

12 January 2022

spotWar criminal Tony Blair knighted

On New Year's Eve, Buckingham Palace announced that former Labour prime minister Tony Blair would be rewarded with the Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter by the Queen

12 January 2022

spotBullying weighing room culture at the races

Horse racing, known as 'the sport of kings', has a long history. And for most of that time the jockeys were male, until the 1970s, in particular 1979, when women were allowed to become professional jockeys.

12 January 2022

spotFree prescriptions? Maybe when you're older

The government has a proposal on the table to raise the qualifying age for free medical prescriptions from 60 to 66

12 January 2022

spotDon't Look Up: An entertaining satire on corporate power and the US establishment

Film: 'Don't Look Up': The movie satire, 'Don't Look Up', became a major hit over the Christmas holiday season. The dark comedy, written and directed by Adam McKay, concerns a desperate attempt by scientists to alert the

12 January 2022

spotMoney Heist: A Robin Hood tale set in modern-day capitalism

TV series: 'La Casa de Papel' or Money Heist: This is a must-watch Spanish drama over five series, and now available to watch in its entirety on Netflix.

12 January 2022

spotKazakhstan: Working-class revolt only suppressed by massive mobilisation of troops

Kazakh state forces, backed by Russian paratroops, are enforcing a military grip in Almaty

12 January 2022

spotEnergy bosses: 'Jump, cuddle and eat porridge while we raise prices'

Struggling to pay your energy bills? The obvious solutions; a pay rise, decent pensions and benefits, bringing energy back into public ownership...

12 January 2022

spotEnergy price crisis: nationalise energy giants to save us from 600 hit

The energy price cap is expected to increase by over 50%

12 January 2022

spotBlow to establishment as jury backs Colston Four

There were jubilant scenes outside Bristol Crown Court as the four were cleared

12 January 2022

spotAnne: Hillsborough and the fight for justice

Kevin Sampson's short TV series portrays the crusade for justice by the family of one of the 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster's victims

12 January 2022

spotPeople's Budget: We beat council cuts before, we will again

Leeds Labour council is preparing to pass on another round of Tory austerity.

12 January 2022

spotCovid, stress and cutbacks fuel school staff shortages

Covid is running rampant and unchecked through many schools

12 January 2022

spot10,000 tube workers vote to strike over jobs, terms and pension cuts

London Underground bosses refused to give assurances on jobs, pensions and working conditions.

12 January 2022

spotLow pay, stress and Covid drive: NHS staff crisis

Over 20 NHS trusts have declared critical incidents amidst staff shortages.

12 January 2022

spotObituary - Pauline Wall

12 January 2022

spotSocialist Party members joined the picket lines of striking bin workers in Coventry fighting for better pay. January 2022

Coventry bin workers on strike, January 2022, photo by Dave Nellist

Coventry bin workers on strike, January 2022, photo by Dave Nellist

Socialist Party members joined the picket lines of striking bin workers in Coventry fighting for better pay. January 2022

12 January 2022

spotSuper-rich get richer, while we can't make ends meet. Join the fightback!

The richest 1% of households were getting richer even before the pandemic, taking their average wealth to 3.66 million. The wealth gap has widened further since.

19 January 2022

spotSouthampton uni ignores staff and students in exam farce

University management was forced to meet the student union after 95% of the over 7,000 people that participated in an all-student vote favoured moving exams from in-person to online because of the latest Covid crisis.

19 January 2022

spotDemonstrating against the Tory anti-protest bill

As Parliament continues to debate the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which aims to further restrict the right to protest, demonstrations took place on 15 January around the country.

19 January 2022

spotWaltham Forest: Campaign unites families facing eviction

Following threats and evictions of women and their families in Waltham Forest, east London, the trades council's Housing Action Network met on 5 January to discuss the defence of residents who may be forced out of their homes.

19 January 2022

spotNewham council rejects using 0.03% of reserves to fund arts

I was part of the deputation from the North and East London branch of performing arts union Equity to a Newham Council cabinet meeting

19 January 2022

spotBirmingham: Cuts consultations replaced by computer game

Birmingham City Council traditionally holds public consultations on its annual budget, but for 2022 it has decided to change the format

19 January 2022

spotBournemouth - angry people not represented by capitalist parties

Boscombe is supposedly not fertile ground for socialist values, but at our first Bournemouth Socialist Party campaign stall of the year on 15 January, we talked to many disaffected people on a range of topics - including union rights, issues effecting LGBTQ+ people, housing and homelessness.

19 January 2022

spotTheatre: Yes Yes UCS

Interview: Telling the story of the 1971 Upper Clyde Shipbuilders work-in: In June 1971, the privately owned shipyards of Upper Clyde Shipbuilders collapsed into receivership. But instead of accepting redundancy, the large workforce occupied the affected sites and began its famous

19 January 2022

spotRob Windsor - remembering a tireless fighter for socialism

It is ten years since we lost Coventry Socialist Party member Rob Windsor to a serious illness. He was only 47, sadly far too young, but what a force of nature and of socialism he was.

19 January 2022

spotWhy are things the way they are?

In the first of a series on Marxist classics, Nick Hart reviews 'An introduction to the Logic of Marxism' by George Novack.

19 January 2022

spotMurder of Ashling Murphy sends shocks waves across Ireland and beyond

The tragic and senseless murder of 23-year-old Ashling Murphy in County Offaly, in the Irish republic has sent shock waves, anger and devastation throughout communities across the country and beyond

19 January 2022

spotNorthern Ireland: Workers fight threatened closure of women's hostel

The sole women-only hostel in Northern Ireland for homeless women, those with addictions, mental health issues or suffering domestic violence, is facing closure on 27 February.

19 January 2022

spotUS: Independent Socialist Group launches new paper

The Socialist salutes the tremendous step forward achieved by the Socialist Party co-thinkers in the USA, the Independent Socialist Group (ISG), in launching a new party newspaper, 'Socialism Today'.

19 January 2022

spotEyewitness account of workers' uprising in Almaty, Kazakhstan

In the following extract, Igor Ushakov, who serves on the Almaty editorial board of the left-wing online magazine Krasnaya Yurt, explains the events on 4-5 January in the Kazakhstan city of Almaty, where a working-class uprising against the regime took place.

19 January 2022

spotMutual aid, the welfare state and the fight for a new mass workers' party

The Covid pandemic and its effects have deepened an already existing social crisis. Ravaged by years of cuts and privatisation, public services have been unable to meet the needs of working-class communities.

19 January 2022

spotPauline Wall memorial meeting

The memorial meeting for lifelong Marxist Pauline Wall will take place on Saturday 29 January, 2pm, Haworth Village Hall, Butt Lane, Haworth, Keighley, West Yorkshire

19 January 2022

spotNo trust in Tories to keep us safe

For democratic workers' control of Covid safety: The self-isolation period after a positive Covid test has been reduced from seven days to five, with negative lateral flow tests on days five and six

19 January 2022

spotEmployers use vaccine excuse to attack sick pay

Ikea has become the latest company to cut sick pay for unvaccinated workers who need to self-isolate because of Covid, and in some cases for workers who test positive.

19 January 2022

spotNews in brief

299 million of PPE brought by the government during the pandemic has gone out of date. The early days of the pandemic were marked by health and care workers' struggles for face masks and other PPE. Now,

19 January 2022

spotSomers Forge workers continue pay strike

Workers at Somers Forge in Halesowen took their fourth day of strike action in their current dispute for a living pay increase - and also the fourth ever in the company's 155-year history!

19 January 2022

spotWorkplace news in brief

Waltham Forest bin workers in Unite and GMB unions protested on the steps of the town hall on 13 January against bad pay and conditions

19 January 2022

spotBus driver Tracey Scholes reinstated at Go North West

Bus driver Tracey Scholes has been reinstated at Go North West. The campaign won after supporters of Unite member Tracey were out in full force on 11 January to demand her reinstatement against the blind

19 January 2022

spotRoyal Mail: Unofficial walkouts precede bigger battle to come on pay and workload

A number of Royal Mail delivery offices have taken unofficial industrial action since the New Year, all of which are linked to major national issues taking place within Royal Mail since the 'Pathway to Change' national agreement.

19 January 2022

spotNewham college strike solid against bully privatisers

Strikers are ready to go the distance and beat 'academisation' at Newham Sixth Form College (NewVIc) in east London. Action restarted on 11 January after the Christmas break.

19 January 2022

spotOliver Campbell - 31 years fighting for justice

"I went into prison innocent. I came out innocent. And I've been innocent all the way through. I was put under pressure to confess to a crime I did not commit."

19 January 2022

spotTories on the ropes - Build a workers' alternative

Photo: Kuhlmann MSC/CC

Photo: Kuhlmann MSC/CC

The future of Boris Johnson as PM hangs by a thinner and thinner thread, following the revelations of Downing Street parties and the backdrop of the cost of living crisis.

19 January 2022

spotTory vaccine sacking threat set to deepen NHS staffing crisis

86,000 NHS staff face the sack in April if they do not have the Covid-19 vaccine.

19 January 2022

spotNUS walkout: Organise to fight for free education on 2 March

The National Union of Students has launched its campaign for a 'student strike for education'.

19 January 2022

spotWant to fight austerity?

Come to the Trade Unionist and Socialist conference:

19 January 2022

spotCoventry bin strike continues

Socialist Party members have continued to show support for striking bin workers in Coventry as the Labour council continues its campaign of disinformation and lies about bin workers' pay

19 January 2022

spotSheffield Just Eat couriers speak about strike

Just Eat takeaway food delivery drivers have been striking against pay cuts in Sheffield since 6 December in what has become the longest continuous such action in the gig economy in the UK

19 January 2022

spotS Yorks Stagecoach strike results in "huge pay win"

After three-and-a-half weeks of strike action, 560 Stagecoach bus workers across South Yorkshire have voted to accept what their Unite trade union has described as a "huge pay win" of over a 1-an-hour increase, amounting to a 10.7% rise

19 January 2022

spotScunthorpe scaffs resume indefinite strike action

The 61 scaffolders employed by contractor Actavo, working on the British Steel works at Scunthorpe, will resume indefinite strike action on 26 January

19 January 2022

spotTories hand cash to private health profiteers

Nationalise private health and big pharma: Private hospitals are set to receive up to 525 million of public money in a deal negotiated by a Tory minister

20 January 2022

spot10,000 tube workers vote to strike

RMT members working for London Underground have voted overwhelmingly for strike action

25 January 2022

spotBarts NHS workers strike back

Nearly 600 health workers at Bart's health trust are striking for fair pay, and against increasing workloads and bullying.

26 January 2022

spotNews in brief

Government considers green levy cut: Energy bills are going through the uninsulated roof and the government is under pressure. The Energy Company Obligation could be under threat. This 1 billion levy on energy bills pays for energy efficiency

26 January 2022

spotLords reject parts of anti-protest bill

Keep up the fight to defend the right to protest: In a blow to the Tory government, several parts of its anti-protest Police, Crime, Courts and Sentencing Bill were rejected by the House of Lords on Monday 17 January.

26 January 2022

spotSocial care providers put profit before residents' needs - nationalise care now

Five years ago, I wrote for the Socialist explaining what it was like working in care, the limited time we had to get people washed, dressed, and to help them eat and drink.

26 January 2022

spotCost of living crisis

Government figures put inflation at 5.4% in December - the highest in 30 years, and this is an underestimation

26 January 2022

spotDWP reps demand action from PCS leadership

More than 60 DWP PCS reps and activists met in a national Zoom meeting called by PCS DWP Greater Manchester branch on 19 January

26 January 2022

spot10,000 tube workers vote to strike - don't make workers pay for TfL funding crisis

Transport union RMT members working for London Underground have voted overwhelmingly for strike action to defend jobs, conditions and our pensions.

26 January 2022

spotStrike action by Carmarthenshire winter gritters wins concessions from council

Winter gritters working for Carmarthenshire County Council have won big concessions from the council which will now have to adhere to an agreement to pay decent shift allowances that it has been trying to cut back.

26 January 2022

spotWorksop Wincanton logistics workers begin ninth week of strike action

450 Unite members are in their ninth week of strike action against Wincanton - the logistics company running the vast Worksop site for B&Q.

26 January 2022

spotHundreds protest to save St Mary's Leisure Centre in Southampton

Southampton Tory council closed St Marys Leisure Centre on 22 December, locking out hundreds of users. They falsely claim that the building requires "millions" to maintain.

26 January 2022

spotWakefield TUSC - Fighting for low-paid workers and NHS

Wakefield Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) held its first public meeting of the new year on 20 January, in person and via Zoom, to deal with the urgent question of working-class political representation.

26 January 2022

spotThis is students' chance to fight back - help build 2 March NUS walkout

For too long now, students have been forced to pay for poor-quality higher education. Education should be a right, and free and available to all, not something to be marketised.

26 January 2022

spotSelling the Socialist

On our Socialist Party campaign stalls about rising gas and electricity prices, we have spoken to lots of people concerned and angry about the situation

26 January 2022

spotEducation: Workload and inflation goes up, incomes fall

This term has started just as last term finished: school staff under intolerable pressure from incessant workload and Covid absences

26 January 2022

spotBritain's waterways choked with a 'chemical cocktail'

How capitalism is severely polluting our waterways and what could be done to clean up the mess: Yet more depressing news on pollution of our rivers and waterways has made the headlines in recent weeks.

26 January 2022

spotTrade unionists in the USA fighting back

In 2021, union workers were involved in at least 346 strikes across most sectors of the US economy including manufacturing, transportation, and services.

26 January 2022

spotWar in Yemen, made in Harlow, profit for rich

Three children were killed by an air strike as they were playing football in Yemen on 21 January, and more than 70 prisoners died when a detention centre was bombed

26 January 2022

spotSomers 'slaughterhouse' Forge

The articles concerning the Somers Forge strike (see in Halesowen were interesting to learn that the company has the same disregard for its workers as it had in the 1930s

26 January 2022

spotUK Covid-19 mortality similar to Spanish Flu

The total number of UK Covid deaths has exceeded 150,000. Laura Spinney, author of Pale Rider, reviewed by Socialist Party general secretary Hannah Sell (see, stated the number of

26 January 2022

spotIt's my party, and I'll lie if I want to

Tory MPs and members knew that Boris Johnson's entire career as a journalist and politician was littered with lies - that's why they selected him, to win a general election based on 'levelling up' lies.

26 January 2022

spotUniversities: Strike action at 68 in two disputes

Action is soon to be announced at 68 universities, following reballots in the UCU

26 January 2022

spotOaks Park School: valiant strike exposed state of schools

The intrepid strike at Oaks Park School exemplified many of the problems facing school unions

26 January 2022

spotTrade unions and the fight against council cuts

Interview: Unite's strategy on fighting the cuts: Socialist Party member Onay Kasab, recently appointed Lead for Local Government in Unite the Union, spoke to the Socialist

26 January 2022

spotSheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally: Over 100 trade unionists and students in Sheffield rallied in support of the Just Eat delivery drivers on their 31st day of targeted strike action against company pay cuts. Photo by Alistair Tice

Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally, photo by Alistair Tice

Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally, photo by Alistair Tice

Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally: Over 100 trade unionists and students in Sheffield rallied in support of the Just Eat delivery drivers on their 31st day of targeted strike action against company pay cuts. Photo by Alistair Tice

26 January 2022

spotWe need a workers' alternative to big business Tories and Labour

Every day Boris Johnson and his government are more and more mired in scandal.

26 January 2022

spotEviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest

Every London borough has thousands of families on housing waiting lists and hundreds of empty homes. The benefit cap and the end of the eviction ban are creating a rising tide of evictions.

27 January 2022

spotFormer MP colleague of Jeremy Corbyn to stand in Birmingham Erdington by-election

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) today announced that Dave Nellist is to contest the forthcoming Birmingham Erdington parliamentary by-election on behalf of the left-wing alliance

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