Solidarity 050, 20 April 2004

NUT: Campaign for Ian Murch for General Secretary

By Patrick Murphy

This year's Conference of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) was one of the most unified in recent memory.

Fairly militant policies were agreed on most of the major issues facing teachers, from workforce remodelling to pay and pensions.
We even had the bizarre sight of Doug McAvoy keenly embracing Mark Serwotka of PCS and looking to his union and others like it to create a unity of those prepared to defend their members, as opposed to those keen to be partners with Government.

Bush and Blair back Sharon - Unions must condemn Blair!

By John O'Mahony

The decision of the Sharon government, with the backing of the USA and Britain, to impose on the Palestinian people an Israeli "solution" to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will, if it goes ahead, lead to further generations of conflict between Israel on the one side and the Palestinians and the Arab world on the other.

Network Rail ballot: vote "yes"!

By a an RMT member

The RMT has called a ballot for industrial action of its 7,000 members at Network Rail. These workers include signalling, maintenance and station staff. The ballot over the closure of the final salary pension scheme, pay, and travel facilities, will run from 27 April to 17 May. It raises the prospect of the first national rail stoppage in a decade.

Majnoun

by Mehrdad Seyf, performed recently at the Riverside Studios

The 'majnoun' of the title is mad with love, and refers to an Iranian story something like 'Romeo and Juliet'. The play is about an Iranian woman living in Britain who has to make up her mind who to marry, her English fiancé or an Iranian friend. The play would appeal most to British and Iranian people who are in a British-Iranian relationship: regrettably, of limited appeal then!

Thinking about abortion

'My Foetus', by Julia Black, Channel Four

They show dying people on telly. They show starving people on telly. They show people killed by war and communal conflict on telly. No one objects. But when someone wants to show a three to four minute uncomplicated medical procedure there is great controversy. Of course the procedure was an abortion and it was shown, very late at night, in Julia Black's film, My Foetus, on 20 April on Channel Four. Predictably the pro-lifers were up in arms.