Tuesday, 22 February 2011

RCT Against the Cuts meeting

The next meeting of RCT Against the cuts will be this Thursday at 7.30pm in Pontypridd Museum.

Come along and help build the fightback against cutbacks in RCT and beyond

Monday, 21 February 2011

Socialists in the News

The Socialist Party have made it into the news a few times this week after the great demonstration against cutbacks last saturday in Pontypridd. You can read a report of that here on the Socialist Party Wales website.

There is also a video of the demonstration which you can view here and an article on the Wales Online website which features a couple of quotes from Socialist Party member Rob Williams which you can read here.

Rhondda Cynon Taff marches against the cuts

Over 400 trade unionists, community campaigners and young people marched against cutbacks in a demonstration organised by UNISON. Also in attendance was a sizeable contingent from GMB, PCS NASUWT and other trade unionists. The demonstration was loud and angry as we marched through the town centre with the Youth Fight For Jobs contingent especially loud.

Many council workers are angry at the labour run Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) council for the blackmailing of staff, threatening them with the sack unless they except worse pay and conditions, which will affect their pay home pay for most workers of between £2-£4000, and in some cases even more!

The anger of the workforce was noticeable at the rally in the Muni at the end of the march, which was reflected in the speeches UNISON leaders in Wales were made even if up until now this has not been matched by their actions. It is clear that the weight of their members’ anger is pressing up against them.
Hundreds of RCT Against The Cuts leaflets were distributed on the day, both to those on the demonstration and passers-by. After the rally Socialist Party Wales held a very successful public meeting with about 50 in attendance. At the meeting several council workers expressed their anger towards the trade union branch leaderships, who they say had not really gone out of their way to inform the workforce that the demonstration had taken place, one worker went on to add “I only found out about the demo today, but most of the people I work with probably still don’t know after it has happened”.

In reply one of the organisers of RCT Against The Cuts said that this shows the importance of building this anti-cuts alliance which can communicate to all trade unionists and other campaigners in the area about the events coming up and to build a network of activists throughout all trade unions in the area to act as a lever on the leaderships to make sure they are doing what we elected them to do as represent their members interests.
On the day dozens of people said they would come to the next meeting of RCT Against The Cuts on February 24th in Pontypridd Museum and are going to help build the campaign. Two people joined the Socialist Party and many more expressed an interest in finding out more and joining as well.

Video By Ken Smith
Text By Glyn Matthews

Friday, 18 February 2011

Why I joined The Socialist Party

Rhys Harrison recently joined the RCT branch of the Socialist Party. Below he explains in his own words why he joined.

I recently joined the RCT branch of the socialist party. I’m a 23 yr old culinary student from the Graig in Pontypridd. I joined the socialist party after meeting some members at a stall in Pontypridd  town centre, the members explained to me the party’s goals and agenda, and what the alternative is to the cuts agenda.
I joined the party because I feel the ruling parties don’t care about working class people anymore, it seems that any chance they get, they make a deal to make working class people struggle and line their own pockets. You only have to walk down the high street, to see the effect of the council’s will to sell off our peoples hard work and heritage, its lined with steal shutters and boarded  up shops. They will tell you its just economic downturns and the youths laziness, were in fact, its their corruption, backhanding and greed that have put the South Wales Valleys in the state it’s in today.
If we ever hope to give our children a future we must first fight for ours, I feel that the socialist party is the only organization that can speak for the people most affected by Westminster and local greed. It’s up to us, the youth, to organize and fight all cuts, budgets, and tyrannical corporate agendas they choose to impose on working class people. The time for blindness is over, we must open our eyes and tell Westminster, and the assembly that what we see is wrong, and that we will make them change their ways. BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY.   

By Rhys Harrison

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Defending jobs in South Wales

Trade unionists, community campaigners and young people from all over South Wales will descend upon Pontypridd on 19 February for a demonstration called by Unison. We will be protesting against cuts to public services and jobs in Wales, specifically those being made at Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) council, a Labour run authority.

Following on from a similar move at Labour controlled Neath Port Talbot council last year, the workforce were told their contracts were to be terminated, and that they would be given the option of signing new contracts with worsened terms and conditions.

After the joint trade unions formally registered a dispute, the council announced they were not prepared to participate in mediation with the joint secretaries of the Welsh Local Government Association and the trade unions.
The Unison and GMB branches have subsequently initiated a ballot for industrial action.
At a question and answer session for Labour Party members last weekend, Ed Miliband's advice to council workers in RCT was: "Blame the Tory government" - little comfort when trying to pay the bills.

Labour councils willing to wield the axe of Con-Dem cuts against their workers and community must be made to understand that they will face the full might of not just the trade union movement, but all those whose lives will be devastated by the programme of destruction that they allow to happen.

By Jamie Davis