“Labour councillors ought to grow a backbone and stand up to the Tories” – Dave Nellist
Coventry Socialists announce 2016 election campaign
Election nominations are closed and we can now confirm that Socialist candidates will be standing in all 18 wards in Coventry for the local elections in May. The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC), backed by the RMT transport workers union, will be standing anti-cuts candidates across the country.
Before making the decision to stand, we wrote to every Labour candidate in Coventry and asked them to meet with us to discuss whether they would be willing to vote against cuts – cuts that will lead to the closure of libraries, public toilets, adult education centres and community centres. None of them would even agree to meet us. Ann Lucas and her colleagues have also signed up the city up to George Osborne’s West Midlands Combined Authority, without even allowing Coventry people a vote.
Our candidates include Dave Nellist in St Michaels, as well as leading trade unionists, young workers, students and community activists.
Labour’s leader, Jeremy Corbyn, wants to fight austerity .We support Jeremy’s anti-austerity policies – it is regrettable that Coventry Labour Councillors have voted to implement the Tory cuts on our city with some Councillors more concerned with attacking Jeremy than fighting the Tories.
As we have done previously, the Socialist Party and TUSC will set out a programme to fight the cuts – including the use of some of the £84 million of reserves that the Council has. This could fund services and delay the cuts, buying time for the building of a mass city wide campaign involving unions, local communities and anti-cuts groups to win back the money stolen from our city by the Tories.
We will also make the case that the Panama Papers tax scandal shows that the money exists in our society for decent public services and housing for all – the problem is that it is in the hands of the 1 per cent at the top. It is austerity for us, tax evasion for the rich! That is why we need socialism.
Will you be voting for the Socialists? Can you help with our campaign by leafleting, putting up a poster or donating? If so, fill in the form below!
Vote against austerity today – vote TUSC!
Voters in Coventry and across the country can vote against austerity, cuts and capitalism today. The mainstream parties and UKIP all think that ordinary people should pay for the crisis that the bosses, the bankers and the super-rich caused. The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) is the only party that’s 100% against austerity and pledges to vote against all cuts.
Vote for the socialist alternative – vote TUSC!
If you want to help the campaign in Coventry on election day, phone Lenny Shail on 07530429441.
Will you be voting for TUSC? let us know!
“No council cuts are necessary” – Dave Nellist
This letter about council cuts from former Labour MP and TUSC national chair Dave Nellist was printed in yesterday’s Coventry Telegraph. Read this article if you want more background on the council’s planned cuts and what the Socialist Party would do differently.
“There’s been little coverage, so far, of the 18 contests for city council seats also taking place on May 7. So allow me raise one issue that I think could define those elections.
On April 22 the Telegraph carried the welcome story of a stay of execution for a City Council jobs service which helps some of the most vulnerable people in the city, at least until the end of the year.
This follows earlier decisions to delay for consultation the imminent closure of libraries, and cuts to disabled children’s transport. None of those decisions will now be taken before the election.
But in fact none of those decisions need to be taken at all.
None of the planned cuts to libraries, children’s and family centres, community centres, adult education centres, lollipop men and women, street cleaners and park maintenance are necessary.
Because when the City Council made its decision in February to set a budget including £15 million worth of cuts to the services mentioned above (and another thousand secure jobs lost to young people in the city) it did so on the money it knew at that time it had as income.
But since then we have learned that Wasps RFC is going to re-pay this summer the balance of the £14.4 million council loan, given to the Ricoh management company which Wasps now own. In other words the City Council will have for this year’s budget £14 million more than 3 months ago it thought it would have.
So here’s a question we could ask to every aspiring councillor in the last few days of the campaign: do you agree that the repayment of that £14 million Ricoh loan should be used to save our libraries, lollipop men and women, disabled children’s transport, jobs service for the most vulnerable and the other services under threat?
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition”
Agree with Dave? Want to fight the council cuts? Fill in the form below to get involved!
Dave Nellist, National chair of the the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) and TUSC candidate for Coventry North West in the general election on May 7th, recently took time out for a 3-part interview with the highly acclaimed ‘Artist Taxi Driver’ .
Agree with Dave?
get in touch on 0753 0429 441
or come along to the Coventry TUSC pre-election rally ….
Socialist election campaign launched in Coventry
77 people attended the launch of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) election campaign in Coventry on February 25th. The Socialist Party, which organised the meeting, is standing as part of TUSC alongside the RMT trade union and many leading trade unionists.
Judy Griffiths, Coventry CWU branch secretary and prospective TUSC candidate, chaired the meeting, at which speakers from the FBU, PCS, Unison, Unite, RMT, NUT and NUS spoke (all speaking in a personal capacity), reflecting the base of TUSC and the Socialist Party in the unions across the city.
Jordan Jefferies, a sixth-form student in Coventry and a Socialist Party member, spoke about the anger felt by many young people against austerity, and said that TUSC has been amazing in attempting to engage the people who are disillusioned and disinterested in politics. People are disillusioned and angry with establishment politics and rightly so. The Socialist Party and TUSC are out to build the opposition to “business as usual”.
Nicky Downes, Coventry NUT President and prospective TUSC candidate, spoke about the effects she sees of austerity on children in her job as a teacher.
Nick Harrison, Coventry Fire Brigades Union borough rep had been on strike with his union the same day – supported on the picket lines by Socialist Party and TUSC activists – and spoke about their dispute, and the need for a viable political alternative to Labour.
Lee Cooper, RMT Coventry No.1 branch secretary, spoke about the City Link scandal, the effect it had on workers and the need for a working class political voice.
Former Labour MP and Socialist Party councillor Dave Nellist spoke about the TUSC project more widely, and why it is significant in the development of a new party for ordinary people.
This meeting showed some of the appetite in Coventry for a political party that sticks up for ordinary people. Syriza in Greece and Podemos in Spain show the potential for building an anti-austerity alternative. The Socialist Party will build TUSC and fight for bold socialist policies to combat not just austerity, but the cause of austerity – the capitalist system.
Sign up here to get involved in the Socialist Campaign Team for the election!
Dave Nellist congratulates local residents on securing Charterhouse lottery funding
Former Coventry Socialist councillor Dave Nellist had this letter published in the Coventry Telegraph this week congratulating Charterhouse residents on securing the future of The Charterhouse and Charterhouse Park. Dave represented St Michaels ward, which includes Charterhouse, on Coventry Council and was heavily involved in the residents campaign to keep the area a public space.
“The announcement of multi-million pound funding for The Charterhouse and Charterhouse Park is a wonderful success for the preservation trust, and all credit must go to them.
But equally so major recognition must be given to the years and years of work of local residents to preserve the area as a public park, which made everything possible.
Without over 40 years of campaigning to preserve public access to the land, we would not be in the position today to see the development of one of Coventry’s major historical sites married to an extension of public space for all communities to enjoy.
In particular the many hundreds of local residents whose active involvement in the Village Green application in 2011 both highlighted continual community use, drew attention to the historic nature of the land, and prevented pre-emptive plans to block access. Without them we wouldn’t be here now on the cusp of a great new park for Coventry.
Without the work of the local residents’ association kicking up a fuss when the former owner of the Charterhouse building put it up for sale this special piece of history could have been lost.
To those who tell local communities that protest, campaigns and active involvement in their areas are pointless and can never win, we can now point to The Charterhouse as living proof that when local residents get organised, things can really happen.
Now let’s do the same for our city’s libraries, community centres, children and family centres, and centres for adult education!”