The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is to stand candidates in Swansea for the Council elections on May 3rd on a platform of opposing all cuts, no matter which party is carrying them through. Our candidates are committed to providing a genuine trade unionist and socialist voice in these elections as the only party that demands our politicians refuse to implement all cuts.
For many trade unionists and working class people now there is very little to chose between the main parties because all support to one degree or another making cuts in our services, privatisation, sacking workers and attacking our terms and conditions. More and more they act like different wings of one, sleazy, anti-trade union, pro-capitalist, party. 13 years of Labour government (8 of them with a majority of over 100) made not a dent on Thatcher’s anti-trade union laws, leaving us with what many commentators have described as the most restrictive anti-trade union legislation in the western world.
Some would have us think that Labour, here in Wales, is a different animal, despite being elected on the same programme. How then do they explain the fact that, when John McDonnell moved a motion in parliament to restore the inflation indexing for public sector pensions from CPI to RPI, only 2 Welsh Labour MPs were prepared to defy their party and vote for it? Neither should it be forgotten that using the threat of redundancy as a weapon to destroy national terms and conditions for council workers, which is now being used by councils across the UK through the issuing of the notorious 188 notices, was pioneered by Labour councils in Neath Port Talbot and Rhondda Cynon Taff.
Our candidates include trade unionists that have fought the same battles against both the current Tory/Liberal Democrat and the previous Labour government.
“As a UNISON member with a local government pension, I’ve taken strike action twice to defend my pension; once under the present Tory government and once under the previous Labour one. I honestly can’t say that it felt any different. We need a political voice that will genuinely represent trade unionists fighting to protect services, jobs and terms and conditions.”
Ronnie Job, TUSC candidate, Sketty Ward
The Con-Dems are hell-bent on destroying Remploy, which provides supported employment for disabled workers. 36 out of 54 Remploy factories are ear-marked for closure this summer, with over 1,700 disabled workers set to be sacked. Remploy workers are fighting this most callous of cuts, using the experience they gathered in their fight in 2008, against the Labour government’s own factory closure programme. TUSC candidate for Gowerton, Les Woodward, who is the convenor of the Remploy Trade Union Consortium, says that Remploy trade unionists have no choice but to fight.
“With jobs in jeopardy, benefits being cut, and no possibility of employment, Remploy workers have no alternative but to fight as hard as they can to protect their jobs and their factories and it is a fight that we will be taking straight to the Government. Remploy factories are not for sale or closure.”
Les Woodward, TUSC candidate, Gowerton Ward
The stunning defeat for Labour in the Bradford West by-election shows that working class people are desperate for an alternative to the “cuts are necessary” consensus of the main parties. Rich individuals and big corporations avoid paying tax to the tune of over £120bn a year so why should working class people pay for a crisis not of our making? Cuts are not necessary and neither are they inevitable; whatever the outcome of these elections TUSC supporters in Swansea will continue to build a movement against all cuts uniting trade unionists with our communities to defeat these cuts and defeat this government of the rich and for the rich.
Vote Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition on May 3rd!
For further information:
Election agent: Alec Thraves 01792 476246 firstname.lastname@example.org
Swansea TUSC election blog: http://tuscswansea.blogspot.co.uk