Thursday, 9 June 2011

30 June: just three weeks to go

The potential mass, co-ordinated strike action of up to 800,000 trade unionists on 30 June has been discussed a number of times on this blog (see here for the most recent example).

It is clear that this is not just another date in the anti-cuts diary but is the best example so far of an opportunity to turn widespread anger against the coalition government's attacks on working class people into a generalised movement of practical resistance. We have also discussed here before how the Egyptian people toppled their tyrannical and dictatorial leader (see here). The demonstrations gave confidence to people to collectively resist the regime but it was the entrance of the working class, organised as workers, through strike action that finally toppled Mubarak.

In Britain, after the TUC-organised demonstration on March 26, the strikes on 30 June will put workers’ resistance centre stage. Vince Cable’s speech to the GMB conference had a clear message to the union leaders – thanks to those of who you who are holding down strikes, but if this changes then there may well be even more anti-union laws. This bullying blackmail needs to be confronted head on – and it can be.

Every day brings more evidence of the effect of the cuts and the way the bosses are using the crisis to reshape society – from the 40,000 extra Royal Mail job losses to the scandal of the Southern Cross care homes.

Equally this week has shown the potential for a rise in the global revolutionary challenge. In Yemen protesters have celebrated the fall of the third dictator since the start of the Arab revolutions. But there are clearly many battles still to fight.

In Cornwall, there were two meetings last night that have helped to move things forward. In Truro, Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance members met and discussed plans for 30 June. There will be a trade union special meeting of the group on 15 June to co-ordinate action on the day. NUT, ATL, UCU, PCS and Unison have confirmed so far. The FBU and CWU are also expected to attend.

The NUT have organised a rally in Lemon Quay from 10:30am on the day and Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance are organising a feeder march for all those not striking to both show their support for the strikers but also to turn it into a day of rage against the government's cuts and privatisation. The march is assembling at Pydar House on Pydar Street in Truro, also at 10:30am. The group will be leafletting in the town for the next three Saturdays and there are also plans to poster and to leaflet workplaces, colleges and schools.

In Penzance, Penwith Anti-Cuts Alliance members met and also discussed the day of co-ordinated strikes. The group agreed to produce its own leaflet and to do stalls on the two Saturdays before the march as well as on Quay Fair Day. A poster will be produced to mobilise people from Penwith and there will be a Penzance meeting point for those that wish to go as a group.

We need to be at the heart of fighting to make the 30 June a carnival of resistance for all those who face the Tory onslaught. The 30 June is the bridge to wider action in the autumn, when potentially Unison, CWU, FBU and others could also be calling strike action. We need to win every worker, every student, every campaigner to see the importance of that date and get in behind building the strikes, rallies and protests.

See also 30 June: two weeks to go and the ballot results are in!

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