“It’s a victory for them all” Coventry Socialist Party members celebrate referendum result in Ireland

“It’s a victory for them all”

Coventry Socialist Party members celebrate referendum result in Ireland

ireland women

Women across the world are celebrating what looks set to be a massive victory for the campaign to repeal the 8th amendment of the Irish constitution. This is a stunning result for the socialist movement, and all those interested in advancing our rights. The Socialist Party in Ireland – with Rosa, the Socialist Feminist Movement, have played a leading role in the campaign. We spoke to two socialist women trade unionists (in a personal capacity) in Coventry to get their reaction.

Nicky, a leading activist for the National Education Union stated

“So proud of our sisters in ROSA and comrades in Socialist Party Ireland. This historic victory will be remembered for changing the lives of women faced with agonising choices. No longer will women have to leave the country in shame for an abortion or have illegal unsafe abortions. The YES campaign has shown how far behind the church and state is from the beliefs of most Irish men and women. It’s a victory for them all.”

Meanwhile Helen, a UNISON shop steward, explained

“The landslide victory for the Yes campaign in Ireland is a huge step forward, not just for those who campaigned and voted, but for future generations of women and girls.

No longer will pregnancy mean that the life of the woman becomes of secondary importance to a foetus that in some case is not even viable.

No longer will women have to go to extraordinary lengths to get the abortion they need.

No longer will women be denied appropriate medical treatment when their health is at risk.

No longer will women have to forgo after care and counselling following an abortion. A future where Ireland’s mothers, grandmothers, wives, partners, sisters and daughters can be properly cared for will be a better Ireland for all. Congratulations to ROSA and the Socialist Party for a very determined and positive campaign.”

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Coventry Socialists show solidarity with mass movement in Hong Kong

Coventry Socialists show solidarity with mass movement in Hong Kong

Party members show support for the movement in Hong Kong

Party members show support for the movement in Hong Kong

During the last week members and supporters of the Socialist Party in Coventry have been building support and solidarity for the mass democracy movement that has erupted on to the streets of Hong Kong. At one of our branch meetings this week, attendees displayed posters produced by our sister organisation in Hong Kong, Socialist Action who have been linking the fight for democracy with the need for socialist change.

Meanwhile our members at the University of Warwick spoke with hundreds of students from China and Hong Kong, raising awareness of the work of socialists in Hong Kong and building solidarity on campus.

Posters displaying the slogans and logo of Socialist Action in Hong Kong

Posters displaying the slogans and logo of Socialist Action in Hong Kong

Socialist Party members will continue with this work over the coming weeks. We would encourage  anyone interested in finding out more to read the socialist perspective on current events by reading this article, produced by Socialist Action. To read it, click here

Coventry shows support for Palestine

Coventry shows support for Palestine

Protest in Coventry

Protest in Coventry

By Dan Crowter

Around 150 people gathered outside the Council House in Coventry to protest against Israel’s continued onslaught on Gaza. The mood was both sombre and angry as people read the names of the hundreds of innocent children who have been killed by Israeli state terror. Unfortunately this list is growing by the hour, with the latest attacks on Gaza perpetrated by the IDF.

The names of children murdered in Gaza were read out

The names of children murdered in Gaza were read out

It is not only the inhumane slaughter of innocent people. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians living in Gaza have been displaced, their homes and communities being reduced to rubble, with little or no access to basic amenities. The situation is nothing short of barbarism.

Socialist Party member Paul Hunt speaking at the protest. Anti-war placard from Israel can be seen in the background - in Hebrew, Arabic and English

Socialist Party member Paul Hunt speaking at the protest. Anti-war placard from Israel / Palestine can be seen in the background – in Hebrew, Arabic and English

Socialist Party member and Coventry Unison assistant branch secretary Paul Hunt spoke bringing solidarity for the people of Palestine from trade unions in the city.  He drew attention to the anti-war protests in Israel and the West Bank and the slogan raised by the Socialist Struggle Movement in Israel / Palestine (sister organisation of the Socialist Party)– “Money for jobs and education, not for war and occupation” which has been produced in Arabic, Hebrew and English . The protests in Israel are as yet small, however 6,000 have rallied in Tel Aviv and other Israeli cities, with a common slogan being ‘Jews and Arabs refuse to be enemies.’

A member of the community expresses his opposition to the situation in the Middle East

A member of the community expresses his opposition to the situation in the Middle East

He also echoed the feelings of many on the demo when he said that the Palestinians can’t rely on any capitalist political leaders – the US and the UK have been sending money and arms to Israel, and Labour leader Ed Miliband described himself as a Zionist. The Egyptian Government are maintaining the blockade of Gaza, which keeps the Palestinian people in poverty and locked in an open air prison. We can’t trust establishment politicians to support Palestine. Rather it will be the support, solidarity and crucially mass action of workers and ordinary people across the Middle East and indeed the world which will be the only reliable source of support for the Palestineans.

The crowd on the Council House steps

The crowd on the Council House steps

Coventry’s Labour council leader Ann Lucas and deputy leader Phil Townshend both spoke at the demo and expressed solidarity with the Palestinian people – this is welcome, but what actions will Coventry Council take to support the Palestinians? They have refused to fly the Palestinian flag from the council building, which would be seen as a basic gesture of solidarity and support.

Stop Israeli state terror

Stop Israeli state terror

There will be more protests in Coventry in the future and we urge as many people as possible to attend the national demonstration for Palestine that will be taking place in London, Saturday 9th August. There will be transport from Coventry. Contact us for more details

If you want to join the fight for a socialist solution to the crisis in the Middle East, please get in touch by clicking here