Part of the Our Class, Our Culture series of Scotland-wide events in the name of the Morning Star daily newspaper - daily paper of the Left http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/
(2014-2015 Program here - http://morningstarscotland.org/19-meetings/34-our-class-and-our-culture-series-2014-15-programme )
Speaker: Jackson Cullinane, Political Officer, UNITE the Union
Chair: Joy Dunn, Political Officer PCS Scotland Union
Recorded: Tuesday 2nd September @ STUC Building, 333 Woodlands Road, Glasgow G3
Monday 6 october 2014
THE People’s Assembly Scotland has called for activists in the Yes and No referendum campaigns to unite and channel their energy into fighting austerity.
Community campaigners and trade union activists from all sides of the independence debate came together at the People’s Assembly Scotland AGM in Glasgow on Saturday.
They agreed to present an agenda to the Smith commission on devolution demanding real powers which will challenge austerity.
STUC deputy general secretary Dave Moxham said the huge referendum vote was “a fantastic democratic outpouring” which had been driven to large extent by anti-austerity feelings.
“The People’s Assembly will now be a vital organ in the post-referendum period to win ‘powers for a purpose’ for the Scottish Parliament,” he said.
But he warned that the “nettle of fair taxation” must be grasped.
“The ability to shape the issues of fair pay, decent jobs and public services should underpin what powers we seek,” he said.
“We are not just talking about tax powers but tax reform — about progressive but also redistributive taxation.”
Bill Greenshields of the People’s Assembly thanked Scotland for the referendum campaign which had “given the lie to the notion created by the ruling class that ordinary people are not interested in politics.”
But he said it was vital that the anti-austerity campaign should now become a movement.
People’s Assembly Scotland chairman Phil McGarry said: “We have a formidable task to unite both referendum groups, but it is vitally important if we want the powers to combat austerity and make a real difference for people on issues like fair taxation, employment, trade union rights, public services and health and safety.”
Malcolm Burns 6/10/2014
THE leader of Scotland’s biggest union put class politics in the centre of the debate over Holyrood powers yesterday at a packed Morning Star conference in Glasgow.
Unison Scotland convener Lilian Macer said: “The outcome of the independence vote was about change — whether you were in the No or the Yes camp.
“People have demonstrated that they value public services, they don’t want more cuts, they reject privatisation and they want a fairer and more equal society.”
And she made an impassioned call for unity on the left, saying both sides must work together to empower Scotland’s Parliament in the fight against austerity.
“The real question now is how we make sure new or existing powers are used to create decent job, tackle low pay, end poverty — and deliver for working class people.
“We cannot allow any division from the referendum to deflect from that higher mission.”
Labour shadow cabinet minister Neil Findlay said it was time to “move beyond some of the entrenched positions of the last few years around the referendum.”
Mr Findlay said the big challenge is how to bring the left together as a campaigning movement.
“Talk of creating yet more parties on the already crowded left, and especially talk of creating new trade unions by some, are extremely misplaced.”
He called on those who voted “yes from a left perspective to use their influence over the Scottish government and tell them it’s time to deliver on a social justice agenda.”
Edinburgh Labour councillor Gordon Munro said the “groundswell of opinion and activity in the referendum came from the grassroots and the shop floor”
and left needed to recognise it.
“We need to make the case for progressive taxation, that seems to have got lost a bit since the only redistributive tax measure in the referendum debate was lowering corporation tax below whatever George Osborne would do.”
SNP Trade Union Group secretary Chris Stephens said there were “opportunities” arising from the referendum despite the disappointment for those who had delivered the large Yes vote.
“Winning powers over employment rights, health and safety, welfare and broadcasting would be positive developments in Scotland’s story.”
Everyone is welcome to these meetings across Scotland. There is no charge. A collection will be taken to help defray expenses.
Brenda Aitchison Secretary Paisley Trades Union Council
Mike Arnot Secretary Dundee Trades Union Council
Tommy Campbell Unite Grampians Regional Organiser
Jackson Cullinane Political Officer, Unite Scotland
Vicky Grandon Executive member Scottish VSC
Tommy Kane Editor: Red Paper on Scotland
Tom Kirby Secretary Fife RSG
Richard Leonard Political Officer, GMB Scotland
Colin Mack Chair Paisley Trades Union Council
Stuart Moir Lectures at Edinburgh University
John Quinn Fine Art, Administrator, Glasgow School of Art
Jim Whyte Veteran Communist who worked with Willie Gallacher in the 1950s
Recorded Tuesday 8 July 2014
Protests against War: 1914 and Keir Hardie
Founder of the Labour Party
Part of “Our Class, Our Culture” Series of Scotland-wide events in the name of the People’s paper
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