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Monthly Archives: June 2010

AN All Trades Unions Alliance fringe meeting held in the evening of the first day of the British Medical Association’s Annual General Meeting was addressed by Dr Nicholas-Pillai, General Practitioner. He explained some of the background to the peremptory closure of his GP medical practice in Enfield. Bush Hill...
BUSINESS Secretary Cable has warned General Motors that the planned development of the Ellesmere Port and Luton car plants will not get government support. This was confirmed by a Business Department spokesperson yesterday, who said: ‘To date Vauxhall has not approached the government for support for the Ampera. ‘As the...
LAST MAY the Unite union leaders agreed for their members in the UK that they would provide savings of 106m euros over four years, 2010-14, to GM Europe. This would be 10 per cent of the total GM Europe savings required to finance GM’s survival plan. To raise the cash...
PATIENTS and staff yesterday expressed their determination to stop the closure of Chase Farm Hospital’s A&E, consultant-led Maternity and Paediatrics departments, and to reopen the Bush Hill Park GP surgery. They were talking to News Line at the latest monthly mass picket outside the Enfield hospital, organised by the North...
THE BMA’s Chairman, Dr Hamish Meldrum, fired a warning shot at the government yesterday as he opened the Association’s annual conference in Brighton. His message was don’t mess with our jobs and pensions! He said: ‘I’ve said that we should be reasonable and responsible when it comes to pay but...
THE Tory crusade has begun to resolve the capitalist crisis by heaping the cost of it onto the poor, the disabled, the elderly, the low paid, and the working class as a whole, without showing any mercy. These are the very people who are not responsible in any way for...
TORY-controlled Barnet Council in north London has announced plans to scrap its housing register. At the Council’s Cabinet on June 21, the Cabinet Member for Housing, Planning and Regeneration, Councillor Richard Cornelius, submitted his department’s report, which says that a new housing allocations policy is a ‘priority’ for the Council’s...
GREEK trade unions are set for a huge one-day general strike today against the government’s ‘Double Bill’ which destroys the state pension system, allows for mass sackings and imposes a 470 euro monthly wage for youth to be employed, without rights, in the place of those older workers made...
EX-ARMY officer Iain Duncan Smith, the Tory Work and Pensions Secretary, was yesterday planning just how to force unemployed workers to give up their council homes, and move to areas where there are supposedly jobs available, without any guarantee of housing. What are they to do with their families:...
Unite joint general secretary Tony Woodley yesterday said the union has ‘postponed’ Tuesday’s ballot for further strike action at British Airways to consider a new offer made by BA during negotiations on Friday. Tuesday’s ballot would have put to a vote further industrial action for 12 weeks, starting from 3rd...
Work and Pensions Secretary Duncan Smith yesterday revived former Thatcher minister Tebbit’s savage ‘on your bike’ attack on the unemployed. Duncan Smith announced plans for people on JobSeekers Allowance living in council homes to give up their home and move to areas where allegedly there are jobs. His scheme does not...
THE NHS would become both more cost-effective and equitable if it were operated on its founding principle of co-operation rather than competition, said a group of medical bodies, unions and healthcare experts. In a joint statement issued last Saturday (June 26) – the result of a round table...

Banking Storm Ahead!

The European debt crisis is a ‘key risk’ to the UK banking sector and banks should build up their cash reserves in response, the Bank of England warned yesterday. In its latest Financial Stability Report, the Bank warned UK banks’ exposure to other European lenders made them extremely vulnerable and...
JUST days after the Tory-led coalition’s ‘emergency budget’ declared war on the working class, the poor, the middle class, children and pensioners – with wage cutting, tax raising, benefit freezing, pension busting and work-till-you-drop measures – the Bank of England has warned that ahead lies a new banking crash...
The country’s largest civil service union, PCS, has condemned the suggestion that public servants should put forward ideas for spending cuts as ‘breathtakingly arrogant and deceitful’. Responding last Thursday to Cameron and Clegg’s letter to Britain’s six million public servants, the union said it was clearly a gimmick, designed to...
According to the Greek police, a powerful ‘parcel bomb’ exploded at 8.20pm on Thursday on the seventh floor of the Greek Ministry for the Protection of the Citizen, killing Police Superintendent Yiorghos Vasilakis, 52, a security advisor to the Minister Michalis Chrysochoides; he was alone in an office room...
BA has moved closer to a merger with Spanish national carrier Iberia after striking a deal with its pension trustees to ‘neutralise’ its pensions deficit of £3.7 billion. It was able to do this after the trade unions, including Unite, agreed to an increase in pension contributions to narrow the...
CONTRARY to Tory Chancellor Osborne’s claims that his Emergency Budget is ‘fair’ and ‘progressive’, it is actually unfair and regressive, hitting the poorest hardest. That is the warning being made by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), which said Osborne’s Budget signals the ‘longest and deepest-sustained cuts to spending on...
COMMENTING on the Chancellor’s budget statement, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the major teachers’ union, said: ‘Despite the Chancellor’s opening remarks that he will not keep anything from the British people, he is doing just that. ‘A £30bn per year reduction in public spending is announced but no...
TORY Chancellor Osborne’s Emergency Budget included measures to smash the spending on public services and smash the social security system, with the biggest spending cuts since World War Two. At the same time working class and poor people will be hammered by his hike in VAT to 20 per cent. leader...
THE NHS has been under heavy attack by both Tory and Labour governments for the last 17 years. They want to privatise it and bring in the big US medical corporations and their private insurance system. Labour and Tory governments declare that the NHS is too expensive, it is failing,...
Doctors’ union the British Medical Association (BMA) and the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges are today, calling on the UK government to take action against irresponsible, direct marketing of private health screening tests. In a letter sent to the Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, BMA Chairman of Council Dr Hamish Meldrum...
OSBORNE said of his emergency Budget yesterday; ‘Yes it is tough; but it is also fair.’ Further on in his speech he allowed just part of the truth to show its face saying ‘I know there are many dedicated public sector workers who work very hard and did not...
LEBANESE authorities have granted a Gaza-bound ship carrying aid and activists permission to sail to Cyprus as Gaza’s Popular Committee Against the Siege chief also confirmed that two boats are ready to cast anchor on Monday. Lebanon’s Transport Minister Ghazi Al-Aridi said the Julia is now docked at the northern...
TORY Chancellor Osborne yesterday confirmed the government’s intention to savagely attack child benefits, disability benefits and housing benefits in his Emergency Budget, whilst pushing up the cost of living by increasing VAT to 20 per cent. To uproar Osborne declared that it was a ‘fair’ and ‘progressive’ budget – whilst...
A delegation of over 40 Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) members and officials lobbied the Treasury as Chancellor Osborne was making his budget speech in the House of Commons, outlining 25 per cent cuts in government departments. They carried placards illustrating the over £120 billion in uncollected and dodged...
EX-LABOUR cabinet minister John Hutton, a 100 per cent Blairite, has joined the Tory-LibDem coalition, and been appointed by it to head a commission into public sector pensions, which the coalition has made no secret of its intention to destroy. In fact, the Tories have made it clear that...
On the eve of today’s budget, striking lecturers told News Line they are determined to defend their pay, pensions and jobs against the Tory-led coalition. At the University of the Arts London, Elephant and Castle site picket line, University and College Union (UCU) member, associate lecturer Paul Glavey, told News...
One Hundred BT workers and their supporters staged a lunchtime rally outside the BT centre in central London yesterday having begun their ballot for strike action against BT’s 2% pay offer. The rally incorporated a lively march around the BT centre where passing motorists tooting their horns were met with...
BY JOHN COULTER, IRISH POLITICAL JOURNALIST SINN FEIN has called for the immediate ending of the Israeli blockade of Gaza. In a major speech, one of the party’s top Stormont Executive members, Northern Farming Minister Michelle Gildernew, used a key republican commemoration to issue her call. She was addressing the annual Theobald...
THE Sri Lankan working class, both Tamil and Sinhalese, is suffering under the ‘iron heel’ of the Rajapakse dictatorship. This has killed tens of thousands of Tamils and annihilated the entire Tamil Tiger leadership which had gathered under a flag of truce, which the regime had negotiated. It has subjected...
OVER 600 people took part in a demonstration outside the Ministry of Justice last Friday afternoon over the government’s refusal to provide a relatively small amount of money to bail out Refugee and Migrant Justice (RMJ) which has gone into administration resulting from the failings in the Legal Services...
A new flotilla to break the siege on Gaza is being prepared in Lebanon. It includes an all-woman vessel, named the Mariam, organised by Samar Al-Haj and Yasser Qashlaq, who denied Israeli allegations that the new fleet had links with Hezbollah. A second Lebanese boat, named after murdered Palestinian cartoonist Naji...
Labour leadership hopeful Ed Balls yesterday accused the Tories of wanting to take Britain back to the conditions of the 1930s. Trade unions are bracing themselves for £85bn of cuts and tax increases in tomorrow’s Budget, with savage attacks being especially levelled at public sector pay, jobs and pensions. Unison general...
Reprinted from Tamil Net ‘INSTEAD of making connections with the illegitimate opposition of Sri Lanka, Venezuela should be strengthening the hand of an ally that is also suffering imperial aggressions,’ says Eva Golinger, a friend of the President of Venezuela and English editor of the Venezuela government newspaper Correo del...
The Greek government of Prime Minister Yiorghos Papandreou has unveiled the contents of a Presidential Decree which would allow for mass sackings, at half of the current compensation rate, and then let companies hire 15-25 year olds at wages far less than today’s so-called ‘minimum wage’. When the President of...
THE Tory-Lib Dem shock and awe budget is due next Tuesday. Already workers, pensioners and youth are calling for action against this savage attack that will create hundreds of thousands more unemployed in the public and private sectors, bar millions of youth from ever getting a job, increase VAT to...
‘The Government’s commitment to “free schools” will create chaos at local level,’ National Union of Teachers (NUT) General Secretary Christine Blower warned yesterday. She continued: ‘Groups setting up their own schools irrespective of local planning needs would be a retrograde step that will lead to planning gridlock and social division. ‘(Education...
ISRAEL’S move to relax its four-year blockade of the Gaza Strip is simple propaganda, Hamas said Thursday. The Islamic movement ‘considers Israel’s decision to increase the types and amounts of goods allowed into Gaza as an effort in beautifying the siege in the hopes of legitimising and extending it,’...
the Tory-led government announced the cancellation of 12 funding projects worth £2 billion yesterday, as well as the suspension of a further 12 projects worth £8.5 billion. Among the cuts was the cancellation of a loan to Sheffield Forgemasters, ignoring a plea from Britain’s biggest union, Unite, not to cut...
SYRIAN President Bashar al-Assad warned yesterday that the Israeli attack on the Gaza humanitarian aid flotilla in international waters, in which nine Turkish citizens were killed, had ‘definitely’ increased the chance of war in the region. In an interview he described the Zionist regime of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu...
‘At the end of 2009, some 43.3 million people worldwide were forcibly displaced due to conflict and persecution, the highest number since the mid-1990s,’ says a report just published. ‘This included 15.2 million refugees, 27.1 million IDPs (internally-displaced people) and close to one million individuals whose asylum application had not...
THE government of President Nicolas Sarkozy announced yesterday the raising of the pension age in France from 60 to 62. Workers will have to work longer (41.5 years) to qualify for a pension. Labour Minister Eric Woerth said it was ‘inevitable’ and necessary to balance public finances. However, this was...
Families of the victims of Bloody Sunday on Tuesday addressed a crowd of thousands outside the Guildhall, Derry, and gave their reaction to the just-published Saville Inquiry Report. At 3.30, as the inquiry was released, large banners of the faces of the 14 civil rights marchers killed were unfurled. 54...
The Private Finance Initiative ‘will burden local health economies for decades’ and drive forward cuts and closures, the British Medical Association (BMA) warned this morning. It was responding to a National Audit Office report published today which reports that most PFI hospital contracts are well managed, but questions their long-term...