Defend free speech

Submitted by Anon on 12 January, 2005 - 5:59

The Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s shameful decision before Christmas to cancel the play Behzti (Dishonour) was justified in the following way by Executive Director Stuart Rogers: “[Sikh] community leaders have been unable to guarantee to us that there will be no repeat of illegal and violent activities… we cannot guarantee the safety of our audiences… [W]e have decided to end the current run of the play on security grounds.”

Defend council housing!

Submitted by Anon on 12 January, 2005 - 5:59

In the run-up to the 1997 general election, the British public was presented with a choice of two similar housing policies by the two main parties. The Conservatives promised wholesale privatisation of council housing. Labour wanted councils to ballot their tenants on whether or not they wanted ownership of their estates to be “transferred” to housing associations. The end seemed to be nigh for council housing. One of the best, and most successful, welfare policies of the twentieth century was to be swept aside by the neo-liberal consensus.

Iraqi union leader murdered. “Resistance” targets trade unions, women, lesbians and gay men

Submitted by Anon on 12 January, 2005 - 5:59

While the Islamists and former regime members continue to mainly target foreign troops and Iraqi state officials in the run-up to the Iraqi elections, the comprehensively anti-working class nature of the so-called resistance is revealed by a continuing series of attacks on trade union organisations and union members.

How fair is Fairtrade?

Submitted by Anon on 12 January, 2005 - 5:59

Within No Sweat we debate what is the best way to stop sweatshop labour. One of the biggest debates we have is around the role to be played by FAIRTRADE goods. Here Paul Hampton explains what he sees as the shortcomings and drawbacks of FAIRTRADE. We invite other readers to join the debate

The world needs trade justice, but is the FAIRTRADE label a viable strategy to get it? I don’t think so.

1. FAIRTRADE labelled goods are a niche market.

Leading Iraqi trade unionist murdered

Submitted by Pete on 6 January, 2005 - 8:20

Hadi Salih, the International Officer of the Iraqi Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU) has been murdered on the night of January 4th in Baghdad.

The Labour Friends of Iraq, LFIQ, have compiled statements of condemnation from leading trade unionists that we reproduce below.+ Update/ Iraqi unions unite in condemnation. See FWCUI statement.

Sri Lankan Trotskyists' appeal on tsunami aid

Submitted by AWL on 2 January, 2005 - 11:48

The Sri Lankan Trotskyist organisation NSSP has issued this appeal following the Indian Ocean tsunami of 26 December 2004.
As you already know, more than 25000 people have been killed and over 2.5 million people displaced by the deadly Tsunamis that swept across South East Asia, hitting Sri Lanka the hardest.

Council plans to replace public housing with private flats

Submitted by Janine on 1 January, 2005 - 10:33

Hackney Council has revealed its plan to demolish Marcon Court and replace it with private flats for sale. After failing to properly maintain the estate for twenty years, the council now wants to bulldoze it and create a new development, three-quarters of which will be private, with only 30 Council flats.