Time to organise – thousands to gather for major online meeting of the left

By the Labour Assembly Against Austerity Team

On Saturday 27th November, thousands will join a major online gathering of the Labour left over a year after the suspension of Jeremy Corbyn from the Parliamentary Labour Party.

The online conference, organised by the Labour Assembly Against Austerity and featuring MPs, trade unionists and activists from across the Labour and trade union movement, has already had over 2,000 people register, and the organisers expect thousands more to watch and attend.

A spokesperson for the Labour Assembly Against Austerity said, “This major event will set out the alternative both to the Tories’ misrule – and Starmer’s lacklustre opposition.”

They added, “After 18 months of tepid ‘constructive opposition’, retrospective and reactive condemnation of the Government’s disastrous Covid and economic strategy, alongside attacks on Party democracy and the left, we are bringing together figures from across the Labour left, the trade unions and social movements, who will discuss the strategy for galvanising a winning coalition in defence of public services, living standards and a progressive economic and foreign policy.”

John McDonnell, one of the keynote speakers at the conference, said: “What is amazing at the moment is the huge number of people who are campaigning in the social movements and the trade union movement facing up to issues like the existential threat of climate change, the attack on wages, the development of such insecure employment within our economy, but in addition to that, another round of potential austerity, impacting on education, our schools, our colleges, the NHS, our social services and of course the attack on our local councils.

“What we need now is to talk through the sort of economy that we want to construct, and the socialist economics that will enable us to rise to those challenges and create the kind of society in which we secure our existence because of our environmental policies but also how we can improve the quality of life for everyone. Join me on November 27th.”

The event will feature lectures, roundtables and discussions such as “The political economy to secure socialist change in 21st century”, “Britain in crisis — the urgent case for public ownership”, “On the brink of catastrophe — for a socialist internationalism to end war, global injustice and climate chaos” and “Building the fightback — for socialist solutions”. Where Labour’s leadership has failed, speakers will draw key dividing lines with the Government, outlining the radical policies Labour needs to inspire, and calling for an end to the attacks on democracy – including the suspension of Corbyn – in the Party.

Helen O’Connor, a speaker at the conference from the People’s Assembly Against Austerity, said: ‘The need to unite against the Tories and effectively resist the cuts and privatisation agenda has never been greater. The economy is in crisis and the costs are being passed onto us in price rises, cuts in wages and the destruction of the welfare state, our NHS and our public services.

“This conference provides an opportunity for the best organisers across the labour, trade unions and social movements to come together and share best practice in organising whilst formulating a co-ordinated strategy to defeat this government.”

Mark Serwotka, General Secretary of the PCS union, added: “I will be attending the Labour Assembly Against Austerity event on November 27th to discuss how we resist this dreadful Tory government. Representing public sector workers, we’re facing a cost of living crisis.

“We need to organise to get people to fight back to defeat the Conservative attempt to make us pay for the cost of the pandemic. So if you want to join me and the many fantastic speakers for a great event to discuss resisting and getting rid of this Tory government, register now and join us on 27th November.”

The day will feature contributions from MPs such as Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell, Diane Abbott and Bell Ribeiro-Addy; trade unionists such as Mark Serwotka; campaigns such as We Own It, and the People’s Assembly Against Austerity; and international speakers from the US, Ghana, France and Argentina.

For more information and to register see: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/resisting-the-tory-offensive-winning-an-agenda-for-people-planet-tickets-174247939277

Image: Jeremy Corbyn. Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/chathamhouse/34292338920/. Author: Chatham House, London, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

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