cuts

Lewisham Carnival Against Cuts

On 19th February 700 people marched through Lewisham to protest against local and national austerity measures. The “Carnival Against Cuts” had starting points all over the borough which converged at the Town Hall and marched to the centre of Lewisham. Despite the rain there was a good atmosphere with a samba band, singing, chanting and even SolFed members in wigs! The usual speeches were made by the usual people but 700 people on a Lewisham protest is not usual. It’s a positive sign but much more needs to be done.

South London SolFed leaflet produced for the event:

STRIKE, BLOCKADE, SABOTAGE!

Disruption in Islington town hall

Solidarity Federation members joined a good sizable demo of more than 200 souls who braved the cold to ensure the pressure was kept on Islington Council. Thursday evening (17 February) the council was due to reside over a council budget meeting to determine the nature of cuts in the public services in the borough. The anger from the demo spilled over, and the 'public consultation' in the council building allowing for the hearing to be observed resulted quite rightly in the retreat of the councilors under heckles and 60 protestors being removed by heavy handed means by the police. Massive turn around in fortunes have seen Labour Councilor Catherine West the previous week leading protests of over 1000 protestors to now calling on the police to turn on protestors! How the tables turn when your being held to account, eh Catherine...

Hundreds protest against Hackney Council cuts

Around 500 people turned out in the rain yesterday to show their dislike of Hackney Council's propsed service losses, as it struggles with some of the heaviest austerity cuts to its budget of any local authority in Britain.

North London Solfed members joined the rally, which was organised by Hackney Alliance Against Cuts, as it marched from Stoke Newington on a two hour route through to the centre of the borough to highlight the potential impact of a 8.9 per cent drop in funding.

Council estimates suggest around 800 jobs would go on the back of the losses, which would drain money and jobs out of some of the most impoverished areas of the country.

Councillor Joe Anderson is no ally of the working class

Joe Anderson, the leader of Liverpool City Council, is trying to paint himself as some kind of anti-cuts rebel. On 29th January he joined an anti-cuts march in Liverpool, not long after he wrote to David Cameron to withdraw Liverpool from the Big Society, and now he is asking people to march against the cuts this Sunday. This is nothing more than cheap political opportunism, and it should be rejected.

He tells us that the council is "bracing itself" for the cuts. He "warns" us that compulsory redundancies in the council will come. He is "incensed" by Liberal Democrats accusing him of having a "politically motivated" approach to job cuts.

New Cross Library Occupation

At 5 pm on Sat 5th feb, a group of about 30-50 local people, including members of SolFed and other local anarchists, occupied New Cross library. Initially this had been part of a national ‘read in’, supporting threatened libraries across the country, but developed into an occupation as participants decided to stay.

As the only occupation out of 450 read-ins, New Cross got a good amount of press. This was more or less the aim; getting publicity for the libraries campaign and keeping up the momentum of the anti-cuts movement in general.  As one optimistic campaigner, James Holland, put it; “I think with this occupation we are going to take the libraries campaign – and the anti-cuts campaign in general – to a whole new level.”

Saving St James' Library

Northampton SolFed was represented at today's 'read in' at St James' library, which is threatened with closure in the current round of cuts.

Roughly 100 people turned up to hear Alan Moore (V for Vendetta) read one of his short stories, and others to read selections from their own selected books.

Feeling is strong: this library is a very important service to an area with many families on low incomes.  As one man pointed out, it's used, it's needed, he was going to read some Dr Zeuss as a reminder of his own early library days, but all the Dr Zeuss books were out on loan...

It's a typical aspect of current political ideology that such a service should be cut, a service which the local population depend upon but would be hard pressed to replace, whilst money is loaded into banker's bonuses, wars etc.

SolFedders March Against Fees and Cuts

On Saturday 29th January, at least a dozen SolFedders from London and the surrounding area joined thousands of students, trade unionists, and workers to march in opposition to cuts to services, job losses, and increases in fees.  A similar demonstration was held Manchester where Aaron Porter, the sellout head of the NUS, had to be escorted away by police as he was taunted and chased by angry demonstrators.  Needless to say, SFers in both cities applaud the Manchester crowd in recognizing that sometimes our class enemies try to speak in our name.

Visiting London

Northampton SolFed teamed up with comrades from North London SolFed to join the anti cuts anti fees march in London today.

Hundreds marched past the houses of Parliament before heading towards Millbank, banners waving, amidts the cries 'You say cut back, we say fight back' amongst others.  Approaching Millbank, and sensing the police were ready to form a kettle protesters headed off on alternative routes.  After showing our faces (not too literally!) at Millbank, we too headed off for the Egyptian embassy to show solidarity with the Egyptian people currently engaged in their struggle against Mubarak's regime.