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Monthly Archives: April 2006

THE Gate Gourmet locked-out workers May Day campaign team got great support from fellow Transport and General Workers Union members in west London bus garages yesterday. At Fullwell Bus Garage in Twickenham, TGWU convenor for Travel London West, Paul Brown said: ‘It is so wrong the way you were sacked...
THE UNISON public sector union yesterday reaffirmed it will back strike action to defend NHS jobs. It was responding to the news that the huge Barking, Havering and Redbridge NHS Trust (BHRT) is planning to axe up to 650 jobs and cut 190 beds to recoup a £24m deficit. A UNISON...
AFTER the disgraceful sell out of final salary pensions by union leaders of the NHS, civil service and local government trade unions, the basic anger of the working class, as seen by the reception given to Health Minister Hewitt at the UNISON Health and RCN conferences, is now making...
OVER 100 bereaved relatives whose loved ones have been killed in the illegal war and occupation of Iraq were joined by MPs, peace campaigners and ex-servicemen in a march on Downing Street yesterday. Led by a piper in full regalia, tearful relatives marched from Parliament Square to the Cenotaph to...
The Board of Guildford and Waverley Primary Care Trust (PCT) in Surrey held an ‘extraordinary meeting’ yesterday where it decided to close Milford Hospital and remove all 14 beds from Cranleigh Village Hospital. Members of the public were invited to attend the meeting but were not allowed to participate. It followed...
LEON Trotsky’s theory of the Permanent Revolution shows how ‘the democratic tasks of the backward bourgeois nations lead directly, in our epoch, to the dictatorship of the proletariat, and that the dictatorship of the proletariat puts socialist tasks on the order of the day.’ (from the introduction to ‘Permanent...
HEATHROW Airport trade unionists are coming to the Gate Gourmet locked-out workers rally at the end of Monday’s TUC May Day march through London. At Heathrow Terminal Four yesterday TGWU shop steward Mo Khan said: ‘I’m very angry at the way the union has treated these members. ‘If the Gate Gourmet...
OVER 100 bereaved relatives whose loved ones have been killed in the illegal war and occupation of Iraq were joined by MPs, peace campaigners and ex-servicemen in a march on Downing Street yesterday. Led by a piper in full regalia, tearful relatives marched from Parliament Square to the Cenotaph to...
Palestinian national resistance movement, Hamas, insisted on Tuesday that it will not recognise the Israeli occupation whatever pressures are placed on the Hamas-led government. Speaking from Khan Younis, the spokesman for the Hamas movement in the Gaza Strip, Sami Abu-Zuhri, said that the Israeli arrest of Hamas members will not...
THE Hounslow local government Unison branch banner will be with the Gate Gourmet locked-out workers banner on the TUC May Day march through London on Monday. The locked-out airport catering workers are campaigning every day for trade unionists and youth to join them on the march. Yesterday the campaign team was...
The ex-Home Secretary Blunkett was forced to resign after interfering to get his lover’s nanny special treatment from the passport office, and then seeking to cover up what had happened. Before him Peter Mandelson was forced to resign over an undeclared loan from a Labour millionaire. Home Secretary Clarke yesterday pleaded...
Six RAF Harrier GR7 jets are to stay in Afghanistan until 31 March 2007 to support UK troops and their allies on the ground, Defence Secretary John Reid has announced. The planes had been due to end their deployment in June but are being kept on after a request...
‘WE want people to march with us on May Day,’ Gate Gourmet locked-out worker Parmjit Baines said yesterday. She was on a campaign team that got great support from trade unionists at Southall Fire Station, Greenford Bus Garage and Greenford Royal Mail Sorting Office. ‘We are not going to let the...
THE fact that six RAF Harrier GR7 jets are to remain in Afghanistan to support the 4,000 British troops who are being assembled in Helmand province disproves the remarks made by Defence Minister Reid that the troops are there to engage in reconstruction work. Even Reid did not stick to...
After a £1.3 billion cash strip, the claim that Debenhams is worth double what the venture capitalists paid for it in 2003 is grotesque, says the GMB trade union. The union said on Monday: ‘Venture capitalists CVC, the asset stripping owners of the AA, are also one of the private...
THE Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has said in a new audio tape attributed to him that the siege imposed on the Hamas government proves that the West is waging what he described as a crusader war on Islam. He said: ‘This is also clear in their...
Yesterday the two biggest health unions warned prime minister Blair about the state of the health service. Royal College of Nursing general secretary Dr Beverly Malone told Blair he was ‘skating on thin ice’, while UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said that any NHS members who felt they had...
YESTERDAY both Blair and Hewitt mocked NHS workers insulting their intelligence with the Hewitt line that this year was the best ever year for the NHS, with Blair giving her his full support. He maintained his ‘keep your nerve’ line as the NHS redundancies mounted, by refusing to give a...
A Royal College of Nursing (RCN) survey of senior nurses, released yesterday, says 13,000 NHS job losses have been announced in the last six months. This is double the number admitted by the government. Ahead of its annual conference starting today, the RCN polled 660 hospital-based senior nurses. Nearly half (45 per...
IT was Mussolini who said that he would drive the Mafia out of Italy and send it packing to the United States. Mussolini went on to place the working class in chains. Now Blair has followed the example of this pioneer of ‘third way’ politics, by spelling out that...
MORE than 1,000 angry doctors rallied at Downing Street last Friday, vowing to fight to reverse a sudden change in the law that threatens them with deportation. The new rules, imposed without consultation by the government, openly discriminate against doctors from Commonwealth countries, who have played a vital role in...
THE Royal College of Physicians, the BMA and all the leading medical organisations yesterday demanded the immediate withdrawal of a sudden, and ‘blatantly racist’ change in the law, which attacks a third of the doctors in the NHS. Speaker after speaker at a rally of over 1,000 angry doctors...
ANOTHER shameful page of British imperialist history has been turned. This time tens of thousands of Asian and African doctors, recruited to come to Britain to be at the heart of the NHS, an action that left their countries in many cases short of doctors, are now to be...
THE crisis of capitalism is now erupting in Britain with massive force. The government has declared that the bankrupt capitalist system cannot afford final salary pension schemes and the longer life spans that people are said to be enjoying. Its solution is to put up the retirement age to 68...
Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas denied on Wednesday accusations by Jordan that the movement had stored weapons on Jordanian territory. Hamas added that it regretted Amman’s cancellation of a visit by the Palestinian Foreign Minister Mahmoud Al-Zahhar, which was scheduled for Wednesday. Al-Zahhar arrived in Jeddah from Riyadh on Tuesday for talks...

Health Cuts Continue

Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton, Somerset, yesterday became the latest to announce cuts in the face of mounting NHS deficits. Taunton and Somerset NHS Trust said a number of beds and at least one ward will have to close at the hospital as part of an effort to make savings...
GATE Gourmet locked-out workers’ branch secretary Jarnail Singh condemned the company for ‘slave driving’ yesterday. He said: ‘They made their plans a long time ago to sack people and bring people in on new contracts. ‘They are working people very fast, they are making people slaves and they don’t care about...
Survivors and families of the Union Carbide Corpora-tion (UCC)/Dow Chemical plant disaster at Bhopal in India, and their international supporters, have been celebrating victory after their most recent campaign of hunger strikes. On Monday, the Indian Prime Minister agreed to provide clean drinking water, and a clean-up of toxic waste...
LEADERS of the trade unions said they were shocked by PSA Peugeot-Citroën’s announcement on Tuesday that it is closing its Ryton factory in Coventry, with the loss of 2,300 jobs, in the middle of next year. Up to three times that number of jobs are expected to be axed...
A team of locked-out Gate Gourmet workers campaigned on Southall High Street yesterday. They spoke to Warish Singh an RMT member from Earls Court tube station, who said: ‘I totally support the Gate Gourmet workers in their fight to get their jobs back on their old terms and conditions and...
Workers threatened with the sack at the Peugeot plant in Coventry voted at mass meetings yesterday morning for strike action to defend their jobs and to keep the Ryton plant open. They declared their determination to fight back against company plans to shut the plant with a direct loss of...
GATE Gourmet locked-out workers yesterday won big support from UNISON members at Hounslow Civic Centre. Paul Gibbons, a student social worker, said: ‘I get irritated by the UNISON leadership caving in too easily and I am really shocked at what is happening to these ladies. Housing and community services worker Marie...
The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) will be holding a national rally in Westminster on May 11th ‘to voice opposition to the government’s deficits policy’. The RCN said yesterday: ‘Nurses from across the country will lobby MPs on the day to support patients and nurses and put pressure on the government...
PRIME Minister Tony Blair made clear yesterday that the government is determined to force through the cuts and closures, privatisation and destruction of the National Health Service. He told a formerly unheard of grouping, the New Health Network: ‘So, now, if the general thrust and direction of the present...
JUST as every volcanic eruption is preceded by a slight swelling in the earth, so the UNISON annual delegate conference, whose preliminary agenda has recently been announced, sits uncomfortably on the rage of its members in the public sector. However, there are already signs of the class explosion that is...
THE membership, branch leaderships and regional leaderships of the local government trade unions must stop the betrayal of their final salary pensions by union leaders who have postponed all of the strike actions that they put forward, to follow up on the magnificent one day strike action on March...
OUR theses were written before the outbreak of this rebellion, which must be the touchstone of our theoretical views. The views of the opponents of self-determination lead to the conclusion that the vitality of small nations oppressed by imperialism has already been sapped, that they cannot play any role...
OVER 2,500 people marched in support of the locked out Gate Gourmet workers last Saturday in the Swiss capital of Berne. The march was part of a day of action in support of Gate Gourmet workers and striking workers at AEG and Swiss Metal. The struggle of the locked out...
Hospital trade unions and patient groups are demanding that the management of Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals NHS Trust come clean on their plans to axe staff at Barnet Hospital in the face of a £31million deficit. It is believed that there are hundreds of redundancies in the pipeline at...
The leaders of Britain’s biggest teachers’ union, the National Union of Teachers, are appealing to ‘parent power’ to defeat the government’s ‘trust schools’ privatisation of education. As delegates gathered for the start of the union’s annual conference in Torquay yesterday, NUT general secretary Steve Sinnott told reporters: ‘We will...
The United States has blocked a UN Security Council statement aimed at putting pressure on Israel to stop its daily murderous military strikes on the Palestinian population of the Gaza Strip. Israeli forces have been shelling Gaza by land, sea and air for weeks, as well as stepping up assassinations...
THE selling of peerages is an old tradition in England that goes well back before the days of Lloyd George. He had an established rate for the job. Any bourgeois could buy a barony for £50,000, a baronetcy for £25,000, or a knighthood for £15,000. With today’s...
‘We were engaged in Civil Disobedience’, said New York Transit workers union President Toussaint at State Supreme Court on April 10, 2006, before he was sentenced to ten days in jail. ‘I stand here charged and found guilty of contempt, and clearly I acknowledge that I made public announcements that...
An RAF doctor found guilty yesterday of disobeying orders at a court martial after he refused to serve in Iraq, is to appeal against his conviction and sentence of eight months detention. Flight Lieutenant Malcolm Kendall-Smith was also dismissed from the RAF and ordered to pay £20,000 costs. Following sentencing...
EIGHT US soldiers have been killed across Iraq in the past four days, including three in roadside bombings Wednesday morning, the US military said. Two were killed when their vehicle was struck by a bomb south of Baghdad at around 9.20am (0520 GMT) Wednesday, the military said, adding that another...