Solidarity 478, 12 September 2018

A racist endeavour?


Michael Elms

One of the eleven examples of antisemitism in the IHRA is this: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a state of Israel is a racist endeavour.”

With the IHRA adoption by Labour, some on the Labour left, has asserted their “right” to call Israel a “racist endeavour”.

Shortly after the Labour NEC vote a posters carrying the slogan “Israel is a racist endeavour” popped up around London.

Yes "smash Israel" is antisemitic


Gerry Bates

The Labour Party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) has decided to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's (IHRA) definition of antisemitism in full.

This is a step forward for Labour but only after weeks of indecision, confusion and lack of leadership in a row which may have caused a great deal of damage.

Guards vote to continue strikes


Ollie Moore

Guards on South Western Railway have voted by 88% to continue their industrial action, aimed at preventing the imposition of “Driver Only Operation”.

Unions are required to regularly re-ballot in ongoing industrial disputes; the majority represents an increased mandate for strikes. 

South Western is one of several companies attempting to remove safety-critical guards from its services. Workers struck most recently on 8 September, alongside guards on Northern. 

Tube drivers in strike vote


Ollie Moore

Members of drivers’ union Aslef on London Underground are balloting for industrial action to win safer cabs. 

Unions say a recent incident on the Northern Line, in which passengers broke into the cab of a female driver and attacked her, vindicate long-running union complaints about the lack of security of drivers’ cab doors. Aslef’s ballot began on 4 September. RMT says it is also considering balloting its driver members. 

Home care workers fight £2m cuts


Gemma Short

Home care enablement workers in Birmingham have struck for over 17 days since January in a long running fight over unworkable shift patterns and a pay cut as the council imposes £2m of cuts in social care.

Workers struck for nine days in August. They will strike again for five days from Wednesday 12 September, five days from 24 September and a final five from 5 October. When the strike started in January, workers were trying to save 40% of jobs. Unfortunately the council has managed to impose those job cuts, but are seeking to make even more cuts.

TUC votes for gender self-ID


Rosalind Robson

TUC Conference has unanimously backed a motion from the TUC LGBT+ committee which supports “the introduction of a social rather than medical model of gender recognition that will help challenge repressive gender stereotypes in the workplace and in society.”

The motion was a response to the government's current consultation on changes to the 2004 Gender Recognition Act, which will run until the start of October.

What’s in the democracy review?


Keith Road

Labour’s National Executive Committee meeting on 18 September will be the last place the democracy review is discussed and amended before it is put before the 2018 conference.

It is unclear exactly how the varying proposals will be voted on, or how they may interact or conflict with rule changes which are due for debate at this conference.

The development of antisemitism in Hungary


John Cunningham

For part two click here

Bibó was not a Marxist but a member of the National Peasant Party (NPP) — a party of radical reformists who adhered to a political position which was loosely described as “the third road” (or “third way”): neither Communist (i.e. Stalinist) or capitalist.

It was, in effect, left-reformist and probably closer to the politics of Bennism (but with an agrarian orientation) than anything else to which it could be compared in the UK today.

Brexit and the labour movement

We oppose Brexit. We oppose it in the name of the rights of the three million EU migrants currently in Britain, our workmates, our neighbours, our friends, our fellow trade-unionists. To defend their right to reunite their families. To sustain the right of others across Europe to come to work and live in Britain, and the right of British-born people to go to work and live in Europe.

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