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People on a previous anti-Austerity protest
Dear Stroud Against the Cuts supporters,

We said before the election we'd keep campaigning against cuts and privatisation whatever the outcome of the election and we'll certainly have to. We will share details of organisational and public meetings ASAP, but in the meantime please book a space on a coach to the People's Assembly National Demonstration in London on June 20th and read on for more reports, events and articles.

In this email:

  1. People's Assembly Against Austerity National Demonstration - including details of how to book a place on a coach from Stroud
  2. Anti-Austerity in Bristol last week
  3. Anti-Austerity protests in Cardiff and Sheffield last weekend
  4. Sacking of construction workers in Forest of Dean (over refusal to work overtime at less than the going rate)
  5. Boycott Workfare 'Welfare Action Gathering' 30th May, London
  6. Rail workers set to strike
  7. UKUncut Day of Action, 30th May, countrywide
  8. AND MORE...

Travel from Stroud to National Protest

The People’s Assembly Against Austerity is calling a major national demonstration & festival on Saturday 20 to send a clear message to the Tory government; we demand an alternative to austerity and to policies that only benefit those at the top.

Transport is being arranged from Stroud. Please contact: Hannah (one of SATC co-ordinators) if you would a seat on a coach: Further details on time and cost will be circulated ASAP, but we will arrive for the 12pm assembly time, and no-one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Anti-austerity protest in Bristol on the 13th May

There was a fantastic turnout for this hastily arranged - less than a week after the election, between 4 and 6,000 people turned out. This video gives an idea of the scale.

The Bristol Post reported, in their story "Thousands gather in Bristol city centre for anti-austerity protest", that:

"One of the seven girls who organised the event, Hannah Patterson, 17, said: "We are just a group of seven young women. It was an amazing turnout, we didn't really expect anything like it."

Video from the South West Socialist Party of a speech at the rally afterwards.

BBC News: "Anti-austerity protesters march through Bristol"

Bath Chronicle Story: "Thousands join anti-Austerity protest on streets of Bristol"

Picture via @22neilmitchell on twitter.

Anti-Austerity protests in Cardiff and Sheffield.

The Cardiff protest was covered by a report and video from Wales Online, and a BBC news report (from where the image of protestors assembling beneath the Aneurin Bevan statue is taken).

An estimated 1,000 people turned out for the protest in Sheffield (according to a Forge News report). A video of the protest features an interview with Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party, who spoke at the Sheffield rally.


5 workers in Mitcheldean SACKED over

Steve Barley - one of the leading figures in the Blacklist Support Group and the construction rank and file has been sacked along with 5 other workers for refusing to work weekends at basic rate plus £1.
The national collective agreement states that workers should be paid time & a half for the first 4 hours and then double time, the workers were all told this would be paid but the companies involved, on a Wates, Briggs & Forrester and employment agency Pier  withdrew the offer on Wednesday. For standing up for their rights, these workers have now been sacked! There was a picket of the workplace today and further action will follow. Read about the sacking of these workers and
contact Sue Powell for more information:

'Welfare Action Gathering'

Are you concerned about:

Job centres being places of intimidation and sanctions,
Private providers bullying claimants on ‘welfare-to-work’ schemes,
ESA assessments putting sick and disabled people in fear of destitution,
Welfare rights for young people being abolished and replaced with unpaid work
Housing benefit, Universal Credit...?

Then the Welfare Action Gathering is for you! hear from other people organising across the UK! Learn about our rights and share ideas and tactics! Saturday 30th May, 10.30am-5.30pm (arrive from 10.15am for a cup of tea), London Welsh Centre (10 minutes’ walk from King’s Cross station). If enough people are interested in travelling from Stroud we can pool costs and travel together.

Strike Action by rail workers

The largest rail union, RMT, has confirmed that members will be taking strike action and action short of a strike from Monday 25th May in the current dispute over pay and jobs at Network Rail. Network Rail members voted this week by 80% for strike action on a 60% turn out and by 92% for action short of strike action (We will share details of any local picket lines for people to show their support).

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “Our rail staff deserve a fair reward for the high-pressure, safety-critical work that they undertake day and night and the last thing that we need is a demoralised, burnt-out workforce living in fear for their futures and the message has come back loud and clear that that is exactly how they feel about the current offer from Network Rail... " "Support your rail workers - our jobs, your safety".

UKUncut nationwide day of action Saturday 20th May

"The new government will be sworn in on the 27th May. Join us on Saturday 30th May to send a loud and clear message that we’re going to continue to fight the cuts every step of the way. It’s going to be a fun, creative direct action, so invite everyone you know (and everyone you don’t) and bring the kids too!

They tell us there’s no alternative to austerity. BUT THAT’S A LIE! There’s loads of money, it’s just in the hands of a few."

One of SATC's coordinators Caroline Molloy provides "Eight reasons you really can't trust the Tories with the NHS" - "Huge hidden cuts to hospital budgets, soaring privatisation, and some scary plans to make us pay for healthcare"
There will be an anti-austerity protest in Manchester, 23rd May. More information at the Protest Against Austeriy Manchester facebook page - which indicats 4,500 are intending to attend.
Judge asks "“How are they expected to live?" after couple prosecuted for 'theft' from Tesco bins. After the mother was sanctioned and left unable to claim social security, the couple had as little as £8 a week to feed their family-of-four after rent, bills and repayments to the loan shark, .
...and finally:

"A lifelong Labour voter has been told a 30ft graffiti mural of David Cameron throttling a nurse on the side of his house will have to go.

Retired Tony Davis, 73, is so passionate about politics he commissioned a local street artist to create the giant work on his end-of-terrace property [...] But self-employed builder Tony has received a letter telling him to remove the mural or face legal action for breaching advertising rules.
[... Davis said]: "As far as I'm concerned it's not going anywhere soon."

Welcome to the 2015-2020 parliament...
James Beecher
for Stroud Against the Cuts
P.S. We now have a Stroud Against the Cuts Facebook Page. Please like the page, share this mailing with your friends and family via email, facebook or twitter, and reply with anything you're keen to share or get involved in.

"We have to make a stand" - a film about the 2014 Fire Brigades Union (FBU) strike
"We have to make a stand" - SATC film about the 2014 Fire Brigades Union (FBU) strike
Copyright © 2015 Stroud Against the Cuts, All rights reserved.

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